Friday, April 11, 2008

Brown(ie) Eyed Girl

Yesterday, I got a mean craving for some brownies. I decided to go ahead and try a new recipe, so I browsed the internet until I came across this one. Being an Alton Brown fan, I figured, hey, why not? I also decided to branch out from the ghetto fabulous Hershey cocoa powder that I had been using and upgrade to some grown up stuff while I was at it.

Here's an interesting tid bit: Before yesterday afternoon, I did not own a sifter. I owned a sieve, which I used whenever I needed to sift something, and I felt it worked just fine, so I never really got around to buying a real sifter. I was reading this recipe though, and EVERYTHING needs to be freaking sifted. Including the brown sugar.

Who sifts brown sugar?

Then again, who am I to argue with the great AB? So, off to Sur La Table I went, with the thinking that if I was going to buy a sifter, I didn't want it to be a cheap one that would rust after the first use. Besides, who doesn't love a trip to Sur La Table? I also scored some Scharffen Berger cocoa powder while I was there, so I'm thinking it was a good trip.

Now, back to my original question of who the hell sifts brown sugar. The answer? DEFINITELY NOT MISS M, not after last night! My arm ached, and that sugar would not go through the sifter. I had my husband take turns with me. It got all nice and packed under the wheel, so I tried forcing it through with a spoon. I dumped it into the sieve and tried forcing it through THAT with a spoon. No dice. I decided it wasn't meant to be, and just dumped it in the bowl unsifted. So sue me AB.

Other than that, the recipe was a piece of cake (ha!) to follow. I did everything exactly as it said, and as a reward, I got perfect, gooey, super chocolatey brownies that could just make you cry they're so good. They popped right out of the glass pan that I used without the tiniest bit of resistance, and I just used a pizza cutter to slice them up while they were upside down on the cutting board. I topped them with an upside down plate, inverted the whole thing, and ta da! Perfectly sliced, perfectly arranged brownies on a platter. Genius. I just used plain old butter and flour on the pan too, as evidenced by the bit of residue along the edges. Nothing fancy.

On the reviews, a lot of people complained that the brownies didn't cook properly because the temperature was too low, and they were raw in the center but burnt on the top and edges. I'm thinking these people had something wrong with their ovens, because none of that happened for me. Either that or they really don't appreciate what a good brownie should me, super moist and slightly gooey on the inside with a crisp top crust. Too many people bake the hell out of stuff and cause it to just be dry husks of what it should be. It's sad, really. Baking times are approximate guidelines to help you along, not definitive rules to which one should steadfastly adhere!

And there is your baking mini-lesson for the day. :)

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Blogger Lida said...

Oh no!! I so want a brownie right now and yours look sooo good!!!

2:31 PM  
Blogger Devon said...

Great, now I want brownies, thanks! My brownie should be like yours, crunchy top and side if it's an edge, and gooey in the middle. I'm an AB fan too, I just made his carrot cake for DH's birthday, it turned out sooo good! Darn cream cheese frosting is addictive!

9:42 PM  
Blogger EatCrayons said...

Mmmmmm...I think I need brownies, and a big glass of milk!

6:36 AM  

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