Saturday, May 22, 2010

Better Than Best Fudgy Brownies with Pistachios & Dried Blueberries

Better than Best Fudgy Brownies with Pistachios & Dried Blueberries
Adapted from a recipe

Printable Recipe

Prep time: 15-20 minutes
Bake time: 40 minutes
Cooling time: the recipe says 3 hours, but at least 30 minutes (if you can wait that long)

Makes 24- 32 squares
12 oz/340g (1½ cups) unsalted butter, cut into 9 pieces; more softened for the pan
3 ¾ oz/106g (1¼ cups) unsweetened natural cocoa powder, sifted if lumpy
2 ¾ cups granulated sugar
1/2 tsp. table salt
5 large eggs
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
7 ½ oz/212g (1 2/3 cups) all-purpose flour
½ cup dried blueberries (or chopped dried cherries or cranberries)
½ cup pistachios (pecan or whatever nut you prefer), toasted and coarsely chopped
½ - ¾ cup chocolate chips (because there can never be too much chocolate)

1. Preheat oven* to 325°F/170°C. Line the bottom and sides of a 9x13-inch straight-sided baking pan with heavy-duty aluminum foil, leaving about a 2-inch overhang on the short sides. Lightly butter the foil.

2. Put the butter in a large (4-quart) saucepan over medium-low heat and stir occasionally until melted, about 2 minutes. Off the heat, whisk in the cocoa powder until smooth, 1 minute. Add the sugar and salt, and whisk until well blended. Use your fingertip to check the temperature of the batter—it should be warm, not hot. If it’s hot, set the pan aside for a minute or two before continuing.

3. Whisk in the eggs, two and then three at a time, until just blended. Whisk in the vanilla until the batter is well blended. Sprinkle the flour over the batter and stir with a rubber spatula until just blended. Fold in the nuts and/or dried fruit and chocolate chips.

4. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and spread evenly. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with small bits of brownie sticking to it, 35 to 45 minutes. For fudgy brownies, do not overbake.

5. Cool the brownies completely in the pan on a rack, about 3 hours.

6. When the brownies are cool, use the foil overhang to lift them from the pan. Invert onto a cutting board and carefully peel away the foil. Flip again and cut into 24 squares.

Serve immediately or wrap in plastic and store at room temperature for up to 3 days. They can also be frozen in an airtight container or freezer bag for up to 1 month.

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