Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Salted Caramel Brownies!

First, you need to bake some brownies.  Use whatever recipe you like, but keep it simple.  I really like Martha Stewart’s deep dark chocolate brownies and I’ve included the link here (you can omit the optional chocolate chips).  Here’s the link:

If you’re not a baker, you can use a boxed brownie mix – the fudgiest you can find.  I won’ tell anyone and honestly, it’s the topping that makes these things like crack, so ease up on yourself about the actual brownies if you like!  When making brownies, be sure NOT to use extra large eggs as they’ll make the brownies cake-y.  Use large or medium eggs only.  If you have to use extra large, reduce the amount of eggs you use.

Bake and thoroughly cool brownies.  Then make the caramel sauce and pour it over the brownies, allowing it to cool a bit, before finally drizzling the dark chocolate and sprinkling the salt over the top.  Allow it to cool again once fully made – even chill in the fridge if you like.

For the caramel (you can double/triple this recipe – just use this ratio – for a 13x9 pan, you should double this, and honestly, why would you ever make just an 8x8 pan?)

½ cup butter (regular salted butter)
½ cup light brown sugar
pinch of salt
3 Tbsp evaporated milk (or cream)
½ tsp vanilla
1 cup powdered sugar

Melt the butter in a saucepan and add the brown sugar and the evaporated milk.  Cook about 2 minutes.  Remove from heat and add the vanilla, salt, and powdered sugar, whisking until smooth.  Pour/spread evenly over the brownies and allow to thoroughly cool before topping with the dark chocolate and salt.

For the chocolate drizzle

2 oz. bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped (chocolate chip are good in a pinch!)
2 Tbsp Evaporated milk (or cream)
good quality sea salt – flakes or medium grind ideally

After the caramel is hardened, chop the chocolate and carefully melt it in the microwave along with the cream or milk, being sure not to burn it (30 seconds maybe?).  Stir until smooth.  Using a fork, drizzle the chocolate over the caramel brownies.  Alternatively, you can spoon the melted chocolate into a small Ziploc bag and make a small cut in one corners, squeezing it out that way.  While still warm, sprinkle sea salt evenly over the dish.  Cool and cut into small squares before serving.  Very rich – small portions are fine.  Easiest to cut if brownies are cold and you use a hot knife.  Please try not to eat the entire pan at once!  I know it’s the holidays, but really, try and remain civilized J

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