living the sweet life

Brownies from Scratch

I have some things to discuss because I’m confused.

Pumpkin. I absolutely LOVE all things pumpkin and I could eat/drink anything pumpkin related all year round, but as of right now I don’t want to (though now that I’ve said this, I will probably eat and drink all things pumpkin from now on). I’m a little confused. My guess is that up until yesterday, LA has been a victim of a miserable heat wave and that the arrival of all things pumpkin means that summer is over. I don’t know about you but I’m not ready for summer to be over, mostly because I feel like I missed so much of summer this year. I started working again by the last week of June so I was working a ton trying to make up money I had spent during my move to LA and then poof. Now it’s September.

Thankfully when Ryan would visit we would go to the beach and I tried to be outdoors as often as I could on a daily basis, but part of living in LA is that it’s always nice. Sure, it’ll get chilly and rainy during winter time, but there’s not the same sort of urgency as there was in New Jersey to soak up the sun while you could. My body is confused.

Oh, and other than going to work, I literally did nothing else for 3 days except watch Season 9 of Grey’s Anatomy this weekend. All 24 episodes were done in 3 days. It was insanity. I blame the Netflix instant play where the next episode just starts and before you know it, that one episode turned into 3.

Aaaand another thing that confuses me. Brownies. I’ve become a bit of a “from scratch” snob over the years. Not that I don’t love a good cake mix or Tollhouse cookie dough (baked or unbaked) every now and then, but I generally feel like if I can make it from scratch I should. Though honestly? Brownies are probably the one dessert that I don’t mind only using a box mix for. I nearly never make brownies, but when a box mix is involved, they’re usually leagues better than homemade brownies. I don’t know why, but that’s usually the case.

As easy as cooking with box mixes are, sometimes I don’t want to spend the money on them and would rather make brownies with ingredients I have in my pantry. So, consider me on a mission to find a brownie recipe that’s easy and just as good (if not better) than box mix brownies.

These brownies are good. They’re definitely a cake-y brownie but they still have a minor fudgey dense texture. The addition of mini chocolate chips added more chocolate and a little bit of crunch when the brownies cooled down. Since they only use cocoa powder, they’re not too chocolate-y or sweet. If you’re someone who likes a cakier (I just spent 5 minutes trying to figure out how to spell this and still not sure what’s right) brownie, try these out!

I brought them in to work and they were demolished pretty quickly, so I take that as a good sign.

Brownies from Scratch

yields 16 brownies (roughly 2″x2″ squares)

1/2 cup unsalted butter
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 cup mini chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and line a 9-inch square pan with parchment paper. Set aside.

In a microwave safe bowl, melt butter. Add butter into a mixing bowl. Stir in the sugar. Add eggs one at a time, mixing between. Stir in vanilla. Add cocoa powder, flour, salt, and baking powder. Mix together until just combined. Gently fold chocolate chips into batter.

Pour batter into the pan and spread it evenly. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Let brownies cool for 10 minutes in pan and then remove the brownies and parchment paper and let cool completely on a wire rack.

[source: adapted from The Comfort of Cooking]

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