Chocolate Brownie Birthday Cake

It’s blog posting day and I’ve been doing everything but writing for my blog. After spending the morning walking the dog, changing winter bedding to summer, washing my car, pruning shrubs and just generally enjoying a blue sky day, I’ve now realised that I haven’t made the birthday cake for my husband’s birthday today. Yes, I know, I should be wash and polishing his car, but hey, he has taken it to work.

Photo of chocolate brownie birthday square
I’m willing to bet that there is no better chocolate brownie recipe.

You get to the age when putting candles on a traditional cake is not that important. So I figure, for my husband’s birthday why not just make something everybody really wants to eat: chocolate brownies. I’ve got several brownie recipes which are all different and all very nice. But this one is my husband’s particular favourite. It’s really chocolatey and doesn’t crumble. The recipe is based on Annabelle White’s Pandoro recipe, but I make it slightly differently.

Purists might want to use a quality dark chocolate chip in this recipe, but be warned this brownie is already ultra bitter. I find the milk chocolate pieces give it just a tad more flavour.

200g full-dairy butter
4 medium eggs
1 tsp vanilla essence
2 cups castor sugar
100g best quality cocoa powder
½ cup fine-grade flour
1 tsp Baking Powder
200g milk chocolate drops

Heat the oven to 150°C/300°F and place a rack in a sightly low, central position.

Melt the butter in a large bowl and set aside to cool. Meanwhile, sift the cocoa into another large bowl and set that aside.

To the cooled butter, add the eggs and whisk well. Then add the vanilla and sugar and stir until all lumps of sugar are gone. Pour into the cocoa powder and whisk well. You should have a thin paste consistency.

At this stage (if you trust your source of eggs) you could just eat the batter and forget about cooking the rest. I know you’ll be tempted, it’s that good.

But if you are determined to see this through, sift in the flour and B.P. Fold together gently. (see * below)

Quickly & roughly lay a sheet of baking paper into a swiss-roll baking tin/pan. I have a rectangular pan which is about 15x25cm and this works well for me. Pour batter in and smooth out the surface evenly.

* For a change, I sprinkled the chocolate drops over the brownie batter as evenly as possible and patted them into the mixture lightly. But although it made the finished product look pretty, a better flavour is obtained if you stir them into the mixture before pouring into pan.

Place into heated oven and bake for 60 – 65 minutes. The mixture should feel slightly under-cooked. Cool in the pan.

Slice into large squares when completely cold, using a very sharp knife which you may have to wipe clean between slices. By doing this, you should prevent your chocolate brownie from crumbling.

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