Brownies fulfill chocolate cravings

For added texture, feel free to add peanuts to the brownies before baking.

For added texture, feel free to add peanuts to the brownies before baking.

Cristina Lule

Some of my favorite ways to eat brownies are served warm and gooey or with ice cream.

After I tried Kahlua fudge brownies for the first time, though, I quickly added ‘baked with Kahlua’ to my list. The strong coffee aroma in the Kahlua enhances the flavor of the baker’s unsweetened chocolate and adds a nice caffeine kick.

The key to baking chewy, fudge brownies is the type of butter you use. Regular butter will make them spongy and crumbly like bread. Using margarine will keep them moist and gooey in the center of the pan and I have found it also makes them chewier than using regular butter.

This recipe is adapted from Holiday Recipes.

Kahlua Fudge Brownies

1 ½ cup flour, sifted

½ teaspoon baking powder

½ teaspoon salt

2/3 cup butter (I use margarine)

3 squares baking chocolate, unsweetened

3 large eggs

2 cups sugar

¼ cup + 1 tablespoon Kahlua

¾ cup chopped walnuts (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 F.

Grease a 9-inch square pan with either cooking spray or butter until lightly coated. If you have trouble with food sticking to your pan invest in some parchment paper used for baking. It is oven safe and non-stick so cookies, cakes and brownies won’t stick to the sheet or pan and it is oven safe. You can find parchment paper next to the foil and plastic wrap at the grocery store.

If you’re using parchment paper, outline the pan’s bottom shape on the paper with a pen and cut out the square then place on the bottom of the pan before you pour in the batter. Make sure to lightly spray the sides of the pan, even if you are using parchment paper.

Combine the sifted flour, baking powder and salt together in a medium-sized mixing bowl and set aside.

Let the butter come to room temperature on the counter for about an hour or two before you start mixing the ingredients.

Melt the butter and chocolate together in the microwave for about two minutes – time will vary depending to your microwave settings, so keep an eye on the chocolate and butter to ensure it does not overheat. Once melted, mix the contents with a spoon until you get a velvety chocolate consistency.

In a separate large mixing bowl, beat the eggs and sugar for one minute or until the mixture is light and fluffy.

Alternate between adding the flour mixture and chocolate mixture to the egg mixture with a mixer until you have incorporated all three mixtures. Add the ¼ cup of Kahlua to the large mixing bowl and beat just until well blended with the other ingredients.

Pour mixture into the prepared pan.

For a more crunchy texture, sprinkle the walnuts on top of the mixture.

Bake for 30 to 40 minutes While the brownies bake pour yourself some Kahlua, kick your feet up and relax while you wait for these babies to bake.

To check for doneness, pay attention to the edges of the brownies. If they are firm to the touch and begin to pull away a bit from the pan, they are ready. If you use a toothpick in the center, it will still be wet and appear unbaked. They will still be gooey in the center, but once you take them out to cool, they will begin to set.

Let the brownies cool in the pan for about 20 minutes then brush the remaining tablespoon of Kahlua on top of the brownies.

You can eat these brownies warm, cold, with ice cream or just by themselves. However you prefer, be sure to eat them right away because if your house is like mine, they will be gone before you can get them out of the pan.

Cristina Lule can be reached at [email protected]