I have a confession to make. I am not a chocoholic. Don’t get me wrong, I like chocolate. But if I was given the choice between a chocolate and a citrus dessert, the citrus would win every time. I much prefer my citrus coconut cupcakes to the death by chocolate ones I make, I would rather a berry sorbet than a chocolate ice-cream and if given the choice between a chocolate bar and nougat, nougat would win every time. The only exception to this is hot chocolate in winter. Give me a mug of hot chocolate with a shot of white chocolate liquor in it…yum.

When I do have chocolate, I prefer it with something (chocolate and caramel, cherries, citrus, berries, coconut – the list goes on and on). Yet for the last two and a half years I have made these fudgy chocolate brownies with just chocolate (dark chocolate melted for the cake mix then with milk chocolate bits mixed through). They are incredibly rich and I cook them so they are still gooey and fudgy in the centre (as a good brownie should be in my opinion). They are great hot with ice-cream as a dessert or cold straight from the fridge (like a cross between cake and fudge).  A few months ago however, I decided to try making them with frozen raspberries instead of the milk choc bits. Wow, what a difference. I find the raspberries cuts through some of the richness, as well as  adding to the moistness of the brownie. And I love the flavour. I won’t make them without the raspberries now.

The good thing about this recipe though is you can add whatever you want. It doesn’t have to be raspberries, you could use milk or white chocolate bits, maybe some nuts. In the second picture below I used both raspberries and white chocolate. Some orange zest would make jaffa brownies. Play around with the flavours and use what you like. The most important thing though is to use a good chocolate that you like. If you don’t like the chocolate before you cook the brownie, you aren’t going to like the end result.

Bitter dark chocolate – still warm and extra gooey!

Fudgy chocolate and raspberry brownies

Ingredients

  • 150g unsalted butter, chopped
  • 360g dark chocolate, chopped (use a chocolate you like, for a bitter dark chocolate brownie, use 70% cocoa content, for a lighter, sweeter brownie, 50-60%)
  • 1 cup firmly packed (light) brown sugar
  • ½ cup caster sugar
  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1-2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup plain flour
  • ½ cup milk (I always use full fat for this recipe)
  • ½ cup frozen (or fresh) raspberries (or milk choc bits, nuts etc). Plus extra for on top.

Tin – I use a 4cm deep, 24 x 24 cm slice tin for this recipe; however the original recipe called for a 20 x 30 cm (3cm deep) lamington tin. I find the smaller, deeper tin works and ensures gooey brownies. If you use a larger tin, just keep an eye on the cooking time so they don’t overcook.

Using a different chocolate gives different results

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 160C fan forced (180C with no fan). Grease and line your tin, allowing some overhang to assist with removing from the tin later.
  2. Melt the butter and chocolate together until smooth and glossy. I prefer to do this using a bain-marie (in a bowl sitting over a pot of simmering water – make sure the water doesn’t touch the bottom of the bowl or get into the chocolate mix).
  3. Once melted, remove bowl from the heat (being careful not to get any of the water in the mix) and add the brown sugar and caster sugar. Mix until combined and then allow to cool for 5 minutes.
  4. Once cooled slightly, sift the flour into the chocolate mix. Combine the wet ingredients (egg, milk and vanilla) together and then add to the mix and stir until it is all combined. Once combined add in the raspberries (or choc bits).
  5. Pour into prepared tin and smooth the top. I like to add extra raspberries on top to ensure every slice has lots of raspberries. It also looks nice too.
  6. Cook in oven for 35-40 minutes (I always check after 30 minutes however, just in case) until it appears to have just ‘set’ in the centre. If you want them more cake like, bake for longer. Update – I’ve recently been cooking these for an extra 10 – 15 minutes to make them easier to travel with (rather than serving from the fridge) and they have still been quite fudgy and delicious. The amount of melted chocolate in this recipe does make them reasonable forgiving with longer cooking times.
  7. Allow to cool (if you can wait that long) before removing from the pan and cutting in to squares. Dust with icing sugar or cocoa powder if you like and serve. If you are making ahead or keeping them for a few days, store in an airtight container in the fridge.

 Adapted from ‘Seriously rich choc brownies’ Super Food Ideas, April 2010 p 75