Birdie’s Brownies

These brownies are very rich and delicious, so you only need a small square. They are best served warm out of the oven with a scoop of really nice vanilla ice cream and a cuppa. I made these recently for my friend Olivia to celebrate the bird of her third baby: Lily Rose. They make a lovely home-made gift that shows that you just didn’t go out an buy something but spent a bit of time making something from scratch.

They are a bit of work, but I think they are worth it. You need to set aside about 30 minutes (at a relaxed pace on a nice morning with the radio on) to prepare them and another 25 to 30 minutes to bake them.

250g  butter
200g dark chocolate (at least 70% cocoa solids)
100g – 150g chopped nuts (I use walnuts, hazelnuts, almonds, but use any combination you like)
80g cocoa powder, sieved
65g plain flour, sieved
1 teaspoon baking powder
360g caster sugar
4 large eggs ( use organic or free range if you can, for the sake of the poor chicken )

How to do it:

Put a bowl over a pan of simmering water (making sure the bowl does not touch the boiling water), break up the chocolate and chop the butter up in to little squares and add them to the bowl.

While they are slowly melting, take half the nuts and grind them quiet fine and leave the other half a little more chunky.
Take all the dry ingredients and sieve them together and add the castor sugar.

Quick tip: If you don’t have baking powder or just couldn’t be bothered just use 65g self raising flour. This is one of those forgiving recipes that won’t mind!

Once the chocolate and butter have completely melted, add the chopped nuts. Feel free to add more if you like them, its totally up to you. Once they are mixed chuck in all the dry ingredients and use a spatula to mix it all up.

Beat up the eggs and then add them in last, this does take a bit of work and make look dodgy for a bit but keep working the spatula and it will all mix together.

They take a square baking tray (buttered and dusted in flour) of a silicone one (no need to do anything) around 25cms but whatever you have to hand will work. Bake for around 25 minutes. I like mine gooey in the middle so that should be perfect, if you prefer them more set then go for another 5 – 10 minutes.

Once out of the oven leave to cool down a bit and cut in to squares and serve as you like. For me its a big square out of the hand with a cuppa


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