Chocolate Brownies

Rich, Cakey, Chocolatey Goodness!

I bet you are smiling already. 🙂

This is one thing I have found hard to resist. Even though they are easy to make at home, next time I would rather buy them by the piece just to keep my weight loss goal on track. I found couple of recipes with slight variations in amount of chocolate, cocoa powder and eggs used. The one I used came from my colleague’s mom. She has been baking these brownies for last 50 years, how wonderful is that! I think i did a good justice to her recipe and made them more special by baking them on Valentine’s day.

Chocolate Brownies

Yields – 16 big pieces
Ingredients

5 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup (1 stick)unsalted butter, cut into pieces
3 tb spoon cocoa powder
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3 large eggs
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (optional)
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped (optional)

Equipment : 9inch Square Baking pan

Method
Preheat the oven to 350F /180 C. Line the baking tray with parchment paper.

In a medium bowl, melt the chocolate and the butter over simmering water. Set it aside.
Remove from the heat and stir in cocoa powder and sugar.
Next whisk in vanilla extract and eggs, one at a time; beating well after each egg addition. Finally fold in the flour and salt, making sure you don’t over mix the batter. Add in chocolate chips and walnuts. You will notice that the metled chocolate becomes hard to work with once eggs and flour are added, but that’s okay.

Transfer this mixture to the baking pan and bake for 20-25 minutes. Pull out and let them cool for at least 40 minuts on a wire rack to get well defined pieces. Well, I dugged in immediately, nothing tastes better than warm chocolate brownie on a perfect rainy evening!

The Secret
The time you take out the brownies out of the oven is very crucial. A few minutes could turn rich moist brownies into hard ones. Test with a toothpick or a skewer inserted into the middle, it should come out sticky with a little batter and a moist clumps clinging to it. If it comes out clean, you have overbaked them.

Sending this to Rasi’s I am the Star

Deviled Eggs

With Easter just around the corner, this is a great time to try this  deviled egg recipe. These are cute, little, very tempting and especially go well for a potluck party and take no more than 5 minutes when you have boiled eggs ready!

The tricky part is getting the perfect hard boiled eggs and lengthy part is to peel the eggs but my ‘Pro Tips’ section has covered both the tricks so stay tuned!

This is a slightly modified version of classic recipe with a spring twist that comes from fresh cilantro. You can subbed cilantro by any fresh herb of your choice. Let’s get started.

deviled eggs

Deviled Eggs

Ingredients

2 large eggs (as many as you want, use other ingredients to taste)
2 springs of Cilantro
1 tb spoon scallions, finely chopped
1 tb spoon light mayonnaise
1/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 tsp lemon pepper ( or freshly ground pepper + lemon juice)
paprika (optional)
(classic European version always have mayo and mustard)

Method:
Place eggs in a wide saucepan and cover with cold water, cover the pan. Bring to a boil for 10-12 minutes. Remove from heat and let it sit for another 10 minutes. Remove eggs and cool in refrigerator. Remove shells from eggs and slice in half lengthwise. Scoop yolks into a separate bowl. Add mayo, mustard (I didn’t use any mayo or mustard in the photo’d version), salt, pepper and mash it together to make it smooth (yep, i skipped it too). Mix it with finely chopped cilantro/chives/watercress ans finely chopped scallions.

You can now pipe the mixture back into the egg halves using a plastic bag or a simple spoon or watermelon scooper. Sprinkle little pepper and/or paprika on top. Serve cold.

Pro Tips –

How do I know if an egg has gone bad?
Here is a simple test. Immerse an egg into glass of water and if it sinks it’s good to eat. If it floats, it’s time to throw it away!

Perfectly Boiled Eggs –
1. Use a wide sauce pan and cover the eggs by at least one to two inches of cold water. Using cold water and gently bringing it to boil prevents eggs from cracking.
2. Vinegar can prevent egg white running out from any cracked eggs but this is generally not needed.
3. Add 1/2 tspn salt when the water starts boiling. (For geek cooks – salt raises the boiling point of water so add salt only after water starts boiling and always cover the pan to save some energy 🙂 This makes peeling shell easier.
4. After 10-12 minutes, remove from the heat and keep it covered for another 10 minutes.

I saw this video on Facebook which has a trick for how-to peel an egg instantly. Haven’t tried it yet, but let me know if it works for you.

Happy Easter!
Happy Egg Hunting!