Outrageous Brownies

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Just in time for Valentine’s Day, how convenient! This is a must make recipe if you love dark rich fudgy brownies. It comes loaded with nuts- (although I didn’t put them in mine because of a nut allergy in the family) – I think the nuts would help break up the intensity of the chocolate flavor. I chose instead to add melted caramels but you could do such a variety of amazing combos with this recipe or just leave them as written- truly fabulous.

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I am by no means a brownie baker in fact I usually have a lot of trouble deciding when to take them out of the oven, airing on the overcooked side but this recipe I followed exactly and they came out perfect with the recommended time. That makes them a huge win in my book. Plus the recipe isn’t complicated, my only slight hesitation is the pure volume you will get out of this recipe, which you could easily cut in half. So just keep in mind you will have a lot of brownies to share, which is never really a problem and could lead to you being a pretty popular person for a day.  So go ahead and buy that pound of butter!

Be sure to read over the entire recipe before you start, you will need cooling time so beware.

Ina Garten’s Outrageous Brownies  (The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook)

  • 1 pound unsalted butter
  • 28 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips divided
  • 6 ounces unsweetened chocolate
  • 6 extra large eggs
  • 3 tablespoons instant coffee granules (or instant espresso powder)
  • 2 tablespoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, divided
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter and flour a 12x18x1 inch baking sheet. Melt together the butter, one pound of the chips, and the unsweetened chocolate in a medium bowl over simmering water. Allow to cool slightly.

In a large bowl, stir (do not beat) together the eggs, coffee granules, vanilla, and sugar. Stir the warm chocolate mixture into the egg mixture and allow to cool to room temperature. In a medium bowl, sift together 1 cup of flour, the baking powder, and salt. Add to the cooled chocolate mixture. Toss the walnuts and 12 ounces of chips in a medium bowl with 1/4 cup flour, then add them to the chocolate batter. Pour into the baking sheet.

Bake for 20 minutes, then rap the baking sheet against the oven shelf to force the air to escape from between the pan and dough. Bake for another 15 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean. Do not overbake!

Allow to cool thoroughly, refrigerate, and cut into squares.

Ina’s notes: Flouring the chips and walnuts keeps them from sinking to the bottom. It is very important to allow the batter to cool well before adding the chips, or the chips will melt and ruin the brownies.

Do ahead: This recipe can be baked up to a week in advance, wrapped in plastic, and refrigerated.

**My Notes: I think using milk chocolate chips would be great, a little less bitter if you prefer a sweeter brownie. I added a bag of Kraft caramels, melted in the microwave and spread on top and mixed in before baking. Also put a few cut up caramels on top for looks but honestly they just got firm and rather annoying when I cut up the brownies. I think melting caramels and Rice Krispy’s together and putting a nice layer on top of cooled brownies would be fabulous!! Your imagination is limitless with these, have fun.

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