Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Recipe corner - whisky and stem ginger brownies

I can’t really take credit for these brownies. Which is a shame because they are seriously, seriously good.

They came about because of an unsatisfactory Starbucks brownie. D’s, not mine I hasten to add, I’m not that bad at weight watching! Anyway, the brownie was disappointingly dry so I rashly declared that I would bake some myself that we could take up to Scotland with us and that they would be as satisfyingly damp and fudgy as brownies should be. “If they’re going to Scotland,” said he, “They should have a Scottish theme.” And so the whisky and ginger brownie concept was born.

I’m not the biggest fan of alcohol and chocolate in combination – odd when you consider how much I adore the two things separately. But the whisky here is not in your face, it just adds a subtle spiciness that works incredibly well with the chocolate and the little zinging pieces of ginger. You could add a little ground ginger to the flour if you wanted to make the taste slightly more overt.

At 6 pro points a piece, these are obviously not the lowest point option treat in the world but they’re about the same as a chocolate bar – and well worth the expenditure in my opinion. Fortunately they keep excellently well – for at least two weeks in a tin, or even freeze, so one is denied any excuse to scoff the lot in one sitting.


185g unsalted butter
185g dark chocolate
85g plain flour
40g cocoa
50g white chocolate chips (I used buttons here)
50g stem ginger, chopped
2tbsp whisky
3 eggs
275g golden caster sugar

Makes 20, 6 pro points per brownie

Prepare your (approximately) 20cm square tin (I spray mine lightly with oil and put baking parchment in the base) and preheat your oven (180 or 160 for a fan).

For this recipe you’re going to require three bowls. In your first bowl, place your dark chocolate, butter and whisky. You are going to melt these together – you could do this over a bowl of simmering water but I think by far the easiest way is to use the microwave. A couple of minutes at a medium setting should suffice – give it a brisk stir every thirty seconds or so to ensure that nothing untoward is happening. Once the mixture is melted and glossy, set aside and allow to cool slightly.

Now you can sieve your flour and cocoa powder together in a second bowl. Add any spices at this stage, and perhaps a decent pinch of salt.

The eggs and sugar will require whisking together until pale and doubled in volume – this took about a minute in my beloved Kitchen Aid.

Gently, gently take your cooled chocolate and fold it into the whisked eggs: a rubber spatula works well here. You need to be very careful and fold as opposed to stir so that you retain the air you have whipped in. Once the chocolate is incorporated, sieve (again) the cocoa and flour mixture into the mix and again, fold it gently in. Perseverance is required here as it will take a while to come together. Finally, stir through the chocolate chips and ginger pieces.

Pour into the tin and bake for 25 minutes. The difficulty with brownies is to know whether they are ready or not – a skewer inserted into the cake should have some crumbs clinging to it and the top should be shiny and crisp looking and starting to come away from the sides of the tin. I also found that as I removed it from the oven it had the slightest hint of a wobble to the middle of it which had disappeared less than a minute later. The resulting brownies were the perfect amount of squishy.

I’m linking this up to Mrs M’s April Recipe Link party to spread the word – boozy brownies for all!

1 comment:

  1. Blimey - no wonder he married you. For this alone it would be worth the ring! All your other accomplishments and charms must be mere icing on the cake (or brownie)!