Some like them soft, cakey, and spongy, some like them dense, moist, and fudgy. I belong to the latter group that would never say no to the kind of brownies you see in the picture above. These little squares are very intense, and mind you, very rich. But it is hard to resist the temptation to reach for another serving, and more. Especially if you are a chocoholic who desperately craves that deeply sweet rich bite every now and then. These brownies are a chocoholic’s dream, a sweet dream, to be precise. Indulge.
Adapted from “The Essence of Chocolate: Recipes for Baking and Cooking with Fine Chocolate”, by John Scharffenberger and Robert Steinberg
Makes 16 small brownie squares
Note: I used 60% cacao bittersweet chocolate, and not 70% as the original recipe suggested, only because that was what I had in hand. The brownies were delicious nonetheless. Once the brownies have cooled, they were still fudgy, with an interesting chewy texture to them. Also, I didn’t toast the walnuts as the recipe asked as I like them raw better. Do as your heart desires.
6 tablespoons (3 oz) unsalted butter, cut into cubes, plus more for the pan
8 ounces 60% bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup walnut halves (you can toast them too if you want)
Position a rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat the oven to 325ºF (160ºC). Cut an 8 x 16-inch (20 x 40 cm) piece of parchment paper.
Lightly butter an 8 x 8 x 2-inch (20 x 20 x 5 cm) pan and line it with the parchment paper, allowing it to extend evenly over the opposite sides. Butter the parchment including the paper on the sides of the pan.
Place the chocolate and butter in a large heatproof bowl set over a pan of gently simmering water and stir occasionally until melted and smooth. Remove from the heat.
With a large rubber spatula or wooden spoon, beat the sugar and salt into the chocolate mixture (no need to cool the chocolate mixture before this step). Beat in the eggs one at a time. Add the flour and mix vigorously until the batter is very glossy and pulls away from the sides of the bowl.
Break the nuts into large pieces over the batter and fold them in.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan and gently level the batter with spatula. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until a skewer inserted in the center comes out moist but clean (note: mine took 35 minutes to bake).
Let cool in the pan on a cooling rack for 10 minutes. Remove the brownies from the pan using parchment “handles,” and cool completely on the rack before cutting into 16 squares.