Monday, February 1, 2010


I don't have any pictures. I just watched a video podcast from "Howcast Food & Drink" and even though I enjoy the podcast, some of the things they did are not the techniques that I use.

For one, I don't use cooking spray. You are already making brownies, use butter. Grease your 8 x 8 or 9 x9 pan with butter, it dramatically improves the flavor of your final product. If you want to line your dish with foil you can but please consult either Martha Stewart's book on the subject of lining a pan with handles built into your foil or some other better guide than the Howcast. Don't get me wrong, I like their podcast, they just left a few things out.

Lets move onto the butter/chocolate. They show the pan directly on the stovetop. Its better to use a double boiler or to even melt the chocolate in the microwave on medium low at 30 second intervals until its just melting. Stir with a spatula or spoon between each interval and allow the butter/chocolate mixture to melt gently or else you run the risk of burning your chocolate which I guarantee you is not good eats. Also, you don't want the butter on the outside of your pot, rather on the inside with the chocolate.

If it were me, I would not transfer the chocolate to the bowl just yet. They could have instead either beat the eggs and sugar until light yellow or stirred the sugar into the flour and then after tempering the egg with a small amount of the chocolate added the egg to the chocolate mixture not in the pan but in another bowl.

One more thing, they did not use any baking powder. The brownies will come out more fudge like and more dense rather than cake like. The vanilla could have been added with the eggs. Their idea of "mix well" is lumpy and looks too cold. If your batter is smooth thats ok. But, brownies want to be just stirred, lumps are ok, you just want to moisten the batter not build up gluten which will toughen your food product and make it very unpleasant to the tooth. As you can see when they "pour" the batter into the baking dish that its not really pouring at all. Most brownies when mixed are a thinner consistency than this.

They didn't even sift their flour. I would suggest doing this to produce a more delicate crumb and more loft in your brownie.

If you are adding the chopped nuts I would suggest stirring them into the batter before pouring it into the pan. This prevents burning. Burnt nuts are awful. Don't eat them.

Their demonstration of inserting a toothpick and pulling it out cleanly was a very underdone brownie. Extremely.

When you go to depan your brownies, use a plate, put it upside down ontop of your brownie pan. Flip the pan and gently tap the bottom side. The brownies should just fall onto the plate.

Don't eat them too hot or else you will get burned.

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