Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Double Chocolate Walnut Fudgies

Before I talk about my backup plan to serve at today's meeting, update on the chocolate chip cookies that I thought were just "okay". People at work loved them.

Jim: "Those cookies. Whoa. Wow."
Tania: "Those cookies were so good."
Mitali: "If you have this cookie dough, I'm happy to take it off your hands." (That Mitali, such a giver.)

So apparently I'm outvoted. However, I'm unswayed by public opinion. I've baked better chocolate chip cookies.

Even though I might not have needed a backup dessert for my meeting, last night I made one anyway. These are called Double Chocolate Walnut Fudgies but if you've read my blog with any regularity, you know none of my brownies will ever meet a walnut. Instead I substituted Heath bar milk chocolate toffee bits. The recipe calls for baking in 2 8-inch pans but I thought that was a bit extreme so I made it in one 9 x 13 pan (if your recipe calls for baking in an 8-inch pan and you want to double it, it's perfectly fine to use a 9 x 13 pan for the doubled recipe). It's supposed to bake for 40 minutes and be super fudgy. I checked it at 35 minutes and the toothpick inserted in the middle came out clean. Uh-oh. Clean is a bad sign. You don't want clean, you want a few moist crumbs clinging to it. Clean typically means overbaked and dry. However, when I took these out and let them cool, they were surprisingly still moist. If I make these again, I would still take them out sooner and see how they come out. I think I'd also bake them in a smaller pan, maybe a 10-inch square baking pan and see if they come out thicker. This is a simple basic brownie so if you want something quick and easy to make, this is a good recipe to try.

Double Chocolate Walnut Fudgies from A Country Baking Treasury by Lisa Yockelson - baked 11.17.09

½ pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into chunks
6 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
½ cup unsifted cake flour
½ cup unsifted all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup chopped walnuts
2/3 cup miniature semisweet chocolate chips
3 extra-large eggs plus 2 extra-large egg yolks, at room temperature
2 cups vanilla-scented granulated sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 teaspoon chocolate extract

For sprinkling
2/3 cup chopped walnuts

1. Lightly butter and flour two 8-inch square baking pans. Line the bottom of each pan with a square of waxed paper; set aside. Preheat the oven to 350˚F.
2. Melt the butter and chocolate in a heavy saucepan over very low heat; stir well. Set aside to cool.
3. Sift the cake flour, all-purpose flour and salt onto a sheet of waxed paper.
4. Combine the walnuts and chocolate chips in a small bowl and toss with 1 tablespoon of the sifted flour mixture.
5. Beat the eggs and egg yolks in a large mixing bowl. Blend in the granulated sugar and mix well. Blend in the vanilla and chocolate extracts. Stir in the melted chocolate-butter mixture. Stir in the sifted mixture, blending just until the particles of flour have been absorbed. Fold in the chocolate chips and walnuts.
6. Spoon the batter into the prepared pans, dividing evenly between them. Sprinkle the top of eac pan with 1/3 cup chopped walnuts.
7. Bake the fudgies on the middle-level rack of the oven for 40 minutes, until the top is set and shiny and each cake pulls away slightly from the sides of the baking pan.
8. Cool each cake in the pan on a rack until it reaches room temperature, about 2 hours. Invert each cake onto a second cooling rack, peel away the waxed paper, and invert again on to a cutting board.
9. Cut each cake into 9 squares and store them in an airtight tin.

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