Brownie Shortbread - December 16, 2009
While I don't like to try new recipes around the holidays since I'm pressed for time and can't afford failures I can't use, I did take the risk with this one as it seemed like it would turn out. Crisp shortbread base with a brownie layer on top - what could go wrong? When I first read the recipe though, I thought there must be a typo as the brownie layer doesn't contain any flour. So it seemed like it would be supremely fudgy or like a flourless chocolate cake on top. And so it was. It still turned out pretty well as the shortbread layer was crisp and provided a nice contrast to the soft brownie layer. The texture did seem a bit grainy to me though and I think I would have preferred a little flour in it for a more robust brownie. But this is one of those cases where I'm my own worst critic and my coworkers would probably roll their eyes at how picky I am. Because the plate I left out at work pretty much disappeared in under an hour which is always a sign that people like something. So I guess it wasn't that bad.
The only thing I didn't follow to the letter in the recipe was using a food processor to make the shortbread dough. I was feeling lazy about bringing mine out and cleaning it up later so instead I chose to cut the butter into the flour and sugar with two sharp knives. This is how I made the shortbread crust for my lemon bar recipe and that one always turns out so I figured doing it that way for this one would still be okay. And it was.
Brownie Shortbread - made on December 16, 2009 from All-Butter, Fresh-Cream, Sugar-Packed Baking Book by Rosie’s Bakery
1 cup all-purpose flour
¼ cup sugar
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature, cut into 8 pieces
3 ounces unsweetened chocolate
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter
2 large eggs, at room temperature
¾ cup sugar
½ teaspoon baking powder
1. Preheat oven to 350˚F. Lightly grease an 11 x 7-inch baking pan with butter.
2. For the base, process the flour and sugar in a food processor about 15 seconds. Add the butter and process until the dough comes together, 20 to 30 seconds.
3. Pat the dough gently over the bottom of the prepared pan. Bake on the center oven rack until it is lightly golden, about 20 minutes. Place the base in the refrigerator for 15 minutes to cool completely. Keep the oven on.
4. Meanwhile, prepare the topping: melt the chocolate and butter in the top of a double boiler over simmering water. Cool slightly.
5. Beat the eggs, sugar, and baking powder together in a medium-size bowl with a whisk. Add the chocolate mixture and stir vigorously with the whisk until the batter is blended. Spread the chocolate mixture evenly over the base.
6. Bake the bars until the top rises and forms a very thin crust, about 20 minutes. The center will drop as it cools. (A tester inserted in the middle may come out with a fudgy, crumbly batter on it, but it should not be liquidy.) Cool completely on a rack. Cut the shortbread with a thin knife.