With its paper thin crust, fudgey centre, rich chocolate, & hidden soft toffee chunks, these wonderful brownies are certainly going to be a big hit with your sweetheart this year!
I'm sure I don't need to give any introduction to chocolate brownies: soft, fudgey, chocolatey, rich....simply heaven on a plate!
As Valentine's Day is fast approaching I thought that a simple brownie recipe would be the perfect nod to it, providing a lovely, easy, recipe suitable for sharing with your sweetheart. After all, chocolate is synonymous with Valentine's Day alongside roses and teddies.
But these are a little more than a simple chocolate brownies as they each hide a little surprise in their centres!
Do you remember the Rowntree Role advert from some years ago (though they're now made by Nestle) which coined the phrase "do you love anybody enough to give them your last rolo?" I was but a young teenager back then and that year on Valentine's Day I received an anonymous card and small ring sized box containing, not a ring, but a rolo! I was so embarrassed and honestly wondered if it really was his last rolo :-)
So inside these already deliciously rich brownies is a rolo. Extra chocolate. Soft toffee. Oh my, it's a wonder these beauties successfully made their way to the plate ready for a few pictures to be taken! In fact it's a wonder that Mr E & I managed to parcel some of these bad boys up for his work colleagues. Needless to say they'd all been eaten within 5 minutes of him arriving in the office!
Now, brownies are often made from dark chocolate, which I personally find to be too rich. So, in order to reduce that richness but still retain the wonderful chocolate flavour, which we all love, I have used a 50/50 ratio of milk and plain chocolate in this recipe. For me that was just right, though if you like your dark chocolate do feel free to replace the milk chocolate with more of the dark stuff.
Brownies, although simple in their preparation, need to be monitored closely when the bake nears completion. As we know, a brownie should be soft and fudgey and too long in the oven can transform them into a cake...but served with some warm custard all is not lost ;-) When ready, the brownie will no longer wobble when the baking tray is rocked, though soft fudgey crumbs will cling to a skewer when it is inserted into the baked mixture. A cleaner skewer indicates that the brownie has baked for too long....and the bird's custard powder may need to be dug out of the cupboard ;-)
James Morton (remember him from GBBO a few years ago) shares with us his tip for stopping the brownie cooking further once it has been removed from the oven, in his book 'How Baking Works'. He advises to submerge the brownie pan for a few minutes in a little cold water to cool it down. I followed his tip and it hey presto it worked a treat!
With its paper thin crust, fudgey centre, rich chocolate, and hidden soft toffee you're certainly going to be a big hit with your sweetheart this year!
Do you love anybody enough to give them your last
rolo brownie? ;-)
So, let's get to it and bake!
Valentine's Day Brownies Yum
Freezable: Sorry, not tested
Time: hands on time about 15 minutes; bake time 40 - 50 minutes; plus cooling time.
You will need:20cm Square Brownie Tin
Bowl and small pan for melting the chocolate
large Mixing Bowl
Large Roasting Tin
Pallet Knife (or similar)
Skewer / Tooth Pick
For the Brownie200g Butter, plus extra for greasing
100g good quality Plain Chocolate, broken into chunks
100g good quality Milk Chocolate, broken into chunks
3 Eggs + extra Egg Yolk
150g Caster Sugar
125g Light Muscovado Sugar
100g Plain Flour (I used gluten free plain flour)
1 x 52g tube Rolos (NB Sadly these chocolates may contain traces of gluten so aren't suitable for those following a gluten free diet)
How to make it:
1. Pre-heat the oven to 160c / 140 Fan / Gas 3
2. Prepare the brownie tin. Grease and fully line the brownie tin with greaseproof paper, ensuring there is excess paper beyond the edge of the tin to aid the removal of the brownie once cooked.
3. Melt the butter and chocolate. Pour an inch or two of water into the bottom of a pan which is small enough to allow a bowl to be placed on top without its base touching the water. Place the pan on the hob over a low heat. Cube the butter and place into the bowl. Add the broken milk and plain chocolate. Allow the butter and chocolate to slowly melt, stirring periodically with a spatula. Once the mixture is fully melted and lump free remove the bowl from the pan. Sit the bowl on a clean cloth / kitchen roll to dry the underside.
4. Mix the eggs and sugar. Place the sugar and eggs (including the extra egg yolk) into the large mixing bowl. Use a balloon whisk to mix until just combined.
5. Combine the two mixture. Pour the melted chocolate and butter mixture into the bowl containing the combined eggs and sugar. Use the balloon whisk to combine.
6. Fold in the flour. Sieve the flour into the mixture. Use a spatula to fold the flour into the mixture. Fold until the flour has been combined, paying attention to the bottom of bowl. Avoid over mixing especially if using a flour containing gluten
7. Add the rolo chunks. Pour the mixture into the prepared brownie tin. Evenly distribute 9 rolos over the surface of the brownie batter, aiming to position them in the approximate centre of where each slice will be once baked.
8. Bake. Place the brownie tin in the centre of the oven and bake for 40 - 50 minutes. You may need to rotate the tin half way through the bake. After 40 minutes of baking check the brownie every few minutes to avoid over baking it (see notes below).
9. Cool. Pour some water into the base of the large roasting tin, about a centimetre deep. Remove the cooked brownie from the oven and sit the brownie tin (containing the brownie) into the tray carefully so as to avoid splashing the brownie.
10. Slice. Once fully cooled use the excess greaseproof paper to lift the brownie from the tin and sit it on a board. Slice into 9 equal pieces. Use a pallet knife to remove the slices from the greaseproof paper.
Notes:a) Cubing the butter and chocolate small will help the mixture melt evenly.
b) There's no need to push the rolos into the brownie mixture as they will slowly sink into it during the bake and meld together.
c) It's key to avoid over baking the brownie. Removing it too soon will result in it being too soft, though over baking it will create something more cake like. After 40 minutes of slow cooking, regularly check the brownie. When ready, it will no longer wobble in the centre, though an inserted skewer will still hold onto some fudgey crumbs. If there are no crumbs the brownie has been over baked.
d) Store in an airtight container in the fridge.
e) Allow the brownies to come back to room temperature before enjoying any slices which have been chilled.
This post has been shared with:
FiveStar Frou-Frou hosted by Mimi over at A Tray of Bliss
Tin and Thyme
Simply Eggcellent hosted by Dominic over at Belleau Kitchen
and guest hosting this month by Lisa over at United Cakedom