If you bake brownies, you typically fall into one of two camps. Cocoa or chocolate, as in the base for all your chocolatey goodness. Well, there is a third camp, the box mix camp, and this is a judgement free space, so more power to you if that's your zone. I mean, I didn't realize brownies came any other way until college;) but I promise once you make from scratch you can't go back.
Myself, I am a cocoa girl usually. I don't have to worry about burning my chocolate (something I have done all to many times leaving a double boiler unattended), and it produces an utterly gooey brownie that is a little square of heaven. Peep this recipe from Epicurious for a 'pure' cocoa version, it's a stand-by in my kitchen.
I got to thinking though, is there some way to amp the chocolatey-ness up a notch from my usual cocoa batch? I did switch my usual cocoa to something a little higher quality (give Droste a test-drive if you want to try something different than your standard Hersey's), which helped, but I wanted more still. Never enough chocolate, am I right? Well maybe just pregnant.
This recipe is adapted from a few favorites. Decadent. Delicious. Simply, the best gooey brownies ever. *PS, the secret is to never wait for a toothpick to come out clean. Cook the recommended time and then take those puppies out. If you eat one out of the pan like I do, it will seem to be undercooked. That is just how you want them. Once they cool they harden a bit, but retain that soft, candy-like inside. Not cakey and dry. I repeat, decadent and delicious.
Best Gooey Chocolately Brownies
Makes about 12-16 small squares (depending on how you slice and dice them)
1/2 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup unsweetened, good quality Dutch processed cocoa
1 stick plus 2 tbsp butter
1 1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
3/4 tsp flakey sea salt (you may want to adjust to 1/2, I like them kind of salty)
1 tsp vanilla extract
2/3 cup all purpose flour
Heat oven to 350 degrees. I like to place a piece of parchment in the bottom with edges extended on the sides to pull out all the brownies. Grease (over parchment) an 8x8 square baking pan. You can use non-stick spray but doesn't work quite as well in my experience.
Set a medium glass/heat proof bowl over simmering water (medium heat, not a raging boil), and add butter, sugar, chocolate, and cocoa. Stir until melted just about through and remove from heat, stirring further to incorporate any lumps remaining. Whisk in eggs (one at a time), vanilla, and salt. Finally, add the flour, and stir with a rubber spatula until fully incorporated. Pour/spread batter into prepared pan and cook for 20-25 minutes (or desired level of gooey-ness). Remember, these set a bit when cool, so don't stress if they seem underdone when you initially take them out.
Allow to cool fully, aside from obligatory sample which I MUST remove from each batch, and then cut into squares. Dust with some powdered sugar to make them look extra fancy before serving.