31.8.12

Brownie experiments


My dreams are slowly coming true and after my latest trip to Asda, I'm happy to report that they are continuing to stock more American classics! Today's find include mini peanut butter cups and tootsie rolls which are both welcome additions to their already expanding Hershey's range.

It's no secret that my boys love a sweet treat and Fin is especially drawn to anything remotely chocolatey so I decided to whip up some brownies. I had some dark chocolate and mini marshmallows that needed using up and seeing the mini peanut butter cups gave me a bright idea - I LOVE peanut butter and marshmallow sandwiches so why not try the same combination with brownies?! Surely a sugary 'win'?


I used a standard brownie recipe for this experiment and maybe in hindsight I should have used a brownie recipe that calls for cocoa powder rather than dark chocolate to get its chocolatey kick as the chocolate flavour seemed to overpower the peanut butteryness. (I've included a basic brownie recipe at the bottom of this post)

I chopped the mini peanut butter cups into quarters and a I refrigerated them before adding them to the batter to try and keep them from melting entirely into the baking brownie. I'd definitely recommend refrigeration but I'd keep the cups whole next time as a lot of the smaller pieces still disappeared.

The real surprise in this recipe came when I first peeked at the brownies baking in the oven as I noticed all the mini marshmallows had bobbed to the top of the tin! I presumed the dense batter would keep the marshmallows in place but instead they gave the brownie a strange bobbly crust which made them look like chocolate covered bubble wrap of the yummiest kind.

This brownie crust is X Files worthy - can you see that they're hollow?
Whilst this looked cool, in reality this meant the marshmallows all overbaked and melted away so once you bit into one of the bobbly topped brownies; you had the surprise of them being completely hollow! It did mean the crusts were slightly caramelised and I think it give them a bit of a smores flavour (which I loved!) so I'm guessing that maybe using Fluff swirled into the batter might be better? Has anyone added marshmallows to a baked recipe before - what were your results?

So here is my photographic journey into baking these yummy brownies - not the most successful bake ever but fun none the less;
Glistening caster sugar bagged and ready for scooping
Mini peanut butter cups, cold and chopped up
The finished brownie! Dense and studded with peanut butter and caramelised hollow marshmallow shells :)
Basic brownie recipe

  • 200g dark chocolate
  • 175g unsalted butter
  • 325g caster sugar
  • 130g plain flour
  • 3 medium eggs
  • 1tsp vanilla extract

  1. Preheat oven to 160c, line your tin with greaseproof paper (I used an 8" square tin for deep brownies)
  2. Melt butter and chocolate together; I use the microwave method for this but you can also melt them in a bowl set over boiling water. Ensure the mixture is completely melted and lump free. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly. Add vanilla extract.
  3. Add sugar and stir until dissolved. At this stage some people reheat the mixture until the batter is shiny and the sugar is melted as this will ensure your brownie has a shiny crust but I skipped that step on this occasion.
  4. Add flour until incorporated then then add your eggs one at a time until completely mixed.
  5. Bake for around 30mins or until an inserted toothpick comes out with a few crumbs still attached. Be careful not to overbake as your brownie will set as it cools and you don't want a dry brownie!
  6. Wait until completely cold to cut into squares.
  7. And DO NOT cut off a corner approx 3mins after it comes out of the oven as you WILL burn your mouth... ;)

5 comments:

  1. These look amazing! yum!

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    1. Thanks Kerry! A bit of experimenting baking is good for the soul ;)

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  2. Well...doesn't that just look insanely delicious? Also, I am looking at the pink mat and thinking...fab texture mat for bag cakes.

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    Replies
    1. Jude, I have no words. Other people are inclined to lick the screen - you just look at my brownies and think of work...! Lol!

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  3. Well don't they look insanely delicious?!! I'm also thinking the pink mat would make a great texture mat for a bag cake.

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