Brownies, the all American favorite, have found their way into the hearts, mouths and tummies of people all over the world. Brownies are not only full of chocolaty goodness but also have a touch of nostalgia about them which I think makes them that little bit more special.
They really do make a lovely gift idea as they are easy to bake, pop in a box, tie up with a pretty ribbon - a thoughtful gift that will make anyone's day! These brownies travel well but I like to keep them stored in the fridge in an airtight container other and then warm them up in the microwave for 10-20 seconds before eating or serving.
My preference has always been for brownies that are rich and dense with nuts for crunch and flavor! What makes these brownies even more delicious is the addition of gooey marshmallow which gives these brownies a fun "chew factor".
The hazelnuts and almond essence really do add depth and enhance the flavor so I encourage you to not be tempted into leaving them off as the end result while nice will be quite different
The dusting of cocoa powder after baking also add another layer of chocolaty goodness
These will keep well in the fridge in an airtight container for several days
Eat as is or serve topped with vanilla, strawberry or chocolate ice-cream - they all work great, I have tried it!
Best served warm or at room temperature for best flavor and texture - 15-20 seconds in the microwave is usually perfect
Go decadent and add a rich chocolate frosting or ganache on your brownies
YOU WILL NEED
125g | 4.25 ounces butter
125g | 4.25 ounces dark roughly chocolate chopped
1 tablespoon cocoa powder
2 large eggs
140g | 5 ounces caster sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
80g | 3 ounces plain flour
50g | 2 ounces mini or chopped marshmallows
25g | 1 ounce chopped hazelnuts
Extra cocoa powder for dusting
Preheat the oven to 180ºC /350ºF.
Grease and line an 20cm x 20cm / 8” x 8” baking tin with baking paper, set aside.
Melt the butter and chocolate in a saucepan over low-medium heat until melted. Or melt in the microwave by setting on medium-high for 1 minute. Check if the chocolate has melted and if not, pop back into microwave for 15-20 second bursts ensuring you stir each time so the chocolate does not burn.
Mix in the cocoa.
With an electric hand whisk, beat together the eggs, sugar and vanilla extract until thick and creamy.
Mix in the melted chocolate and butter.
Stir in the flour and marshmallows.
Pour into the baking tin and sprinkle over the hazelnuts and just gently nudge them into the brownie batter with a spoon.
Cook for 25 minutes and check, if too soft in the centre bake in 5 minute increments until the centre is just set. I have found, depending on your chocolate and oven it may take anywhere from 25-40 minutes, so keep checking every 5 minutes to ensure it doesn’t over cook.
Dust with cocoa powder, cut into squares and enjoy warm as a treat in itself or with with ice-cream.
Makes One 20cm x 20cm / 8”x 8” tray (9 pieces)