Moist brownies are the ultimate chocolate treat. And can you believe all the varieties of brownie? We have mint brownies, salted caramel brownies, marshmallow and peanut butter brownies. Blondies (is that a brownie or a cookie?), red velvet brownies, brownies that are “outrageous” or triple deckered, which means it’s a stacked ooey gooey tower of chocolate and other stuff drizzled with caramel or fudge or both. Plus boozy brownies with everything from bourbon to Guinness.
Now I love a unique and different brownie concoction, don’t get me wrong, but this recipe is not those brownies. Not even close. You aren’t going to read the ingredient list and say “wow, I would never think to put that in a brownie”. And you’re not going to use a huge chunk of the weekly grocery budget on the ingredients found here. In fact, on first glance you might decide this is nothing special and be tempted to move on when looking for that dessert to impress your guests this weekend. Take a second look here, my friend.
This brownie recipe is not new and trendy. It’s just a simple, timeless classic. Oh, and it’s delicious and moist and chewy in all the right places. This recipe comes from the tattered recipe file in my kitchen. On an aged and yellowed index card, this recipe is written in my grandmother’s handwriting who started making these simple brownies a long time ago and then my mom made them for my brothers and me when we were little (what seems like not a long time ago).
My mom did change the recipe, sort of, when I was a kid. You see, until I was about 8, I thought all brownies were supposed to look like a slice of pie. That’s because my mom ALWAYS baked the recipe in a pie plate. And since this recipe is so easy that any time we wanted brownies, she would just whip some up. I never had brownies from a store or bakery and assumed everyone was eating the pointy triangle-shaped brownies (I still remember seeing my first square brownie and thinking “what is this?”). It wasn’t until years after that I found out the only reason she made them in the pie plate was because she didn’t own a square pan so the pie plate was a perfect stand-in.
Fast forward to a few weeks ago and I was about to make brownies in my square baking pan like all the rest of the “normal” world, and suddenly remembered my childhood brownies. I shared this little story about brownies-in-the-round with my 11 year-old. He requested the round-pan version and after making my first batch of round brownies in so many years, I wondered why I hadn’t made my mom’s version a tradition. Look how rustic yet special they are when cut like this. Sprinkle them with powdered sugar and add nuts if you like. Round or square, the real point of this story is a super moist and delicious brownie recipe that does not have to include 17 different ingredients or twice-baked, frosted swirly cream cheese ingredients. Trust me. The next time your family asks for some brownies or you need to bring a chocolate dessert to the party, whip up this simply classic recipe. You won’t be disappointed. And if you’re so inclined, why not make them in-the-round?
- 8 Tablespoons butter (1 stick)
- 2 squares unsweetened baking chocolate
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ cup chopped walnuts (optional)
- Powdered sugar for dusting (optional)
- Pre-heat oven to 325F degrees. Place oven rack at middle position. Butter and flour an 8" cake pan (square or round). Set aside.
- Melt chocolate and butter, using your favorite method (in the microwave or on the stove) and set aside to cool.
- In a medium bowl, beat the eggs until light and fluffy. Add sugar and beat until creamy.
- Add the melted chocolate mixture and mix for about 30 seconds.
- Whisk baking powder into flour and add to wet ingredients. Stir just till incorporated and batter is all one color. Don't over stir.
- Add nuts, if desired and pour into 8-inch square or round cake pan.
- The batter will be quite thick. Spread almost to edge of pan with a rubber spatula.
- Bake 22-25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out with wet crumbs. Don't over cook the brownies.
- If you want to remove the brownies from the pan, cool for 10 minutes, then cover with the wire rack and invert, tapping a bit to release the brownies. Then gently cover the brownies with serving plate and invert again. Cut brownies into serving size pieces and dust with powdered sugar if desired.