Friday, August 29, 2008

Brownie Points

Dear Foodies,

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Last weekend I was at a 'international cookout' hosted at the house of one of my colleagues. Going with the theme I made some potato-paneer puffs to give them a taste of Indian street food and I made a dessert. Now don't start guessing which one of these I made, because it was not Indian. I made brownies, decadent chocolate filled brownies!

Last year I was lucky enough to have tasted these fabulous brownies and have been wanting to have more ever since. The texture was exactly what I like, soft and gooey. I could make some, but the recipe called for 4 eggs and I had not started baking as much at that time and so I did not risk making it egg less. In the last few months I have used flax seeds quite successfully in baking cakes and muffins and my confidence level is a little better now. But I still wasn't sure it would be the right substitute in this recipe. Flax seeds lend a good support structure but not the soft, sponginess I wanted. That would have to come from a leavening agent like baking powder/soda. I was hesitant about the amount of those two that I would have to use in order to get a spongy feel and there was also the risk of making a chocolate cake instead of a dense brownie.

So well, I choose the easiest route, I conveniently forgot about them :D, But not until I saw the links in this post and then went on to read all the comments in the brownie post to see Bee mention 'silken tofu' as a substitute for eggs. Now that sounded good! And with the upcoming potluck I could make the full recipe and avoid any miscalculations too :)

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I followed the exact same recipe except that I substituted for the eggs and also made them 'chocolate-almond' brownies. For convenience I am re-posting the recipe here with the additions I made. For the original go here.

Ingredients:
  • 8 ounces - fine-quality dark chocolate chopped
  • 6 Tbsp - unsalted butter
  • 6 Tbsp - unsweetened applesauce
  • I bought 2 4oz bottles of applesauce from the baby food section

  • *1 cup - pureed, silken tofu
  • 1 tbsp - coffee liqueur
  • *3/4 tsp - pure vanilla extract
  • I did not have almond extract and so used a lil extra vanilla

  • 3/4 cup - wholewheat pastry flour
  • 1/4 cup - Almond flour
  • I used a spice grinder to powder about 1/3rd cup of raw almonds

  • 1 tsp - unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp - instant coffee powder
  • 1/2 tsp - salt
  • *1/2 tsp - baking powder and baking soda
  • I might add more of each next time
  • 1 cup - bittersweet chocolate chips
  • 1/4 cup - slivered, Almonds
Method:
  1. Preheat the oven to 350° F. Line a 12×9 pan (a half cookie sheet) in one direction, and then the other to overhang the sheet on all sides. Then lightly oil the foil.
  2. *In a microwave, melt the chocolate, butter and applesauce, stirring at 30sec intervals until the mixture is smooth. Stop microwaving when there are still a few chunks of chocolate left, the residual heat will melt the rest on stirring. Let the mixture cool until it is lukewarm.
  3. *Blend the tofu, coffee liqueur, and the vanilla to a smooth puree in a processor.
  4. *Add the tofu to the bowl with the melted chocolate and sift together the flours, salt, cocoa powder, coffee powder and baking powder/soda. Add the chocolate chips too and blend them all together with a spatula.
  5. *Pour the batter into the pan, smooth the top, and sprinkle some slivered almonds. Bake the mixture in the middle of a preheated 350° F oven for 25 minutes (check at 22), (Mine took 27mins) until a tester comes out clean. It is important to take them out as soon as they are done, and not let them dry out. Let the mixture cool a bit. Lift it out with the foil and place it on a rack to cool completely. Cut it into 24 bars. (With my cutting skills I got about 30 in different shapes and sizes :)) )

reeling....

I am now reeling in the success of these brownies but that day I was definitely on a sugar high having tasted all the other desserts that were served too. These brownies are definitely for the chocolate lovers, pure, decadent, rich, dark chocolate lovers! Sorry milk chocolate fans, but this one's just not for you! The brownies were dense yet soft and really gooey. The only change I will make the next time I bake these is, to add a little more baking powder. I would have liked them to be a little less denser.

This recipe is off to lovely Zlamushka who is featuring Jugalbandi this month for her 'Tried & Tasted' event. I am not even going to attempt praising Jai & Bee, their website speaks for itself and I am happy to have found it. Thank you guys and you get 100 brownie points for this recipe :D

If you are reading this and don't already know about their blog, you better not waste any more time cos you have a looot of catching up to do!!

All in the US, enjoy your long weekend! :)

22 thoughts:

Divya Vikram said...

Brownies look too good..Tempting pics..

Manisha said...

If I could stop spinning round and round, I would write something coherent...

Anonymous said...

Exactly my thought too, Manisha :)

Divya said...

Priya, those look great! Good job

Vidhya said...

brownies looks yummy and mouthwatering. Also presentation is too good.

karuna said...

wowo, u hae used some really different ingredients here, tofu apple sauce,almond flour. really nice. and the brownies look yummy. they must have come out soft. nice

Sapna said...

Wow Priya,

I am reeling too. Excellent. I have to try them now.

Sonu said...

Hi Priya,
fab recipe for brownie. I did try this, inspired from Ashwini(Food for Thought).Next time, I'll give a try ur recipe. ur pixs are so eye-catching:)
Take care.
Have a wonderful weekend!
Sonu:)

Manasi said...

Heaven!!!!
Jai n Bee rock!!!

Madhuram said...

Recently I baked a chocolate cake for my son's birthday using silken tofu and the result was amazing. I'm so going to try these brownies.

arundati said...

they look amazing....and i agree with manisha!!

Rachel said...

That pic did give me a spin :)

notyet100 said...

looks so yum..nd nice cicks,..

Nags said...

i have tried this too. long back :)

soums said...

Heyy Priyaa..Lovely Pics..especially the last one..its just Wow!!

Vaishali said...

Hi Priya: These look scrumptious! Applesauce does add a great moistness to vegan brownies.

Shanthi said...

Yummy,I miss all these!:(

Sireesha said...

HAPPY GANESH CHATURTHI DEAR.....

Brownies look awesome and tempting priya:))

bee said...

baking powder affects the taste. try using beaten eggs or just egg whites unless you don't eat eggs at all. for this recipe i recommend using them.

Priti said...

Brownie looking yum..lovely pics ...drooling over now :)

Priya said...


Bee, the change in taste was what made me use just 1/2 tsp this time. The only way I eat eggs is in store bought cakes and pastries, I cannot get myself to use them at home :( hmmm, will using any form of carbonated drink help ?

zlamushka said...

Priya, this is such a gorgeous looking brownie, I wish it was edible over my screen :-)

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