This brownies recipe is known ubiquitously in our house as 'Claire's Brownies', named for my friend Claire that gave me the recipe years ago. Every time I say I baked brownies, everyone in the house will ask -"are they Claire's brownies?" like I'm making secret, substandard brownies just for fun. And God forbid I ever make a packet mix lol.
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Plain flour (you can substitute for GF flour no problem)
Tips for making the perfect brownies
Use High-Quality Ingredients: Start with the best-quality ingredients, including good chocolate (dark or semi-sweet), high-fat butter, and fresh eggs. Quality ingredients will have a significant impact on the final taste and texture of your brownies.
Measure Accurately: Baking is a science, so accurate measurements are crucial. Use measuring cups and spoons for dry ingredients and a kitchen scale for precise measurements.
Balance Sugar and Chocolate: Achieve a perfect balance between sugar and chocolate. Too much sugar can make brownies overly sweet, while too little can result in a dry texture. Experiment to find the right balance for your taste.
Melt the Chocolate and Butter Gently: Melt the chocolate and butter together over low heat or in a microwave at short intervals to avoid scorching. Stir frequently until smooth and combined. Make sure you don't 'set and forget' on the stove, you'll need to keep stirring so the chocolate doesn't burn.
Don't Overmix the Batter: Once you start adding dry ingredients, mix only until they are incorporated. Overmixing can lead to tough brownies. A few lumps in the batter are perfectly fine.
Use the Right Pan: Choose the right pan size and line it with parchment paper or grease it to prevent sticking. The type of pan can affect baking times, so adjust accordingly. I always use either a 20cm x 20cm square tin, or a 27.5cm x 17.5cm brownie pan.
Watch Baking Time Closely: Brownies can go from perfectly fudgy to dry and cakey in a matter of minutes. Start checking for doneness a few minutes before the recommended baking time. A toothpick inserted into the center should come out with a few moist crumbs clinging to it, but not wet.
Allow to Cool Properly: After baking, let the brownies cool in the pan on a wire rack. This allows them to set and develop their flavor and texture. Cutting them too soon can result in a messy outcome. Don't give into the kids who want them immediately!
Experiment with Add-Ins: Feel free to get creative with your brownies. Add nuts, chocolate chips, caramel, or even a swirl of Nutella or peanut butter for extra flavor and texture.
Chill for Clean Slicing: If you want perfectly clean slices, refrigerate the brownies for an hour or so before cutting. This makes it easier to achieve neat edges.
Store Properly: Store brownies in an airtight container to keep them fresh. You can also freeze them for longer storage.
I've also made these into delicious Christmas brownies, that are fantastic for class parties and Christmas parties when you need to bring a plate.
The Perfect Brownie Recipe
- 200 g butter
- 180 g milk or dark chocolate I like Nestle Plaistow
- ¾ cup cocoa Use high quality like Nestle. Not homebrand
- 1 ½ cups sugar
- 4 eggs
- ⅔ cup plain flour GF flour can be substituted in the same measurement.
- ½ teaspoon vanilla paste
- Preheat oven to 160 degrees celsius
- Melt butter and chocolate together in a saucepan on medium heat.
- Combine all other ingredients in a mixing bowl
- Add melted chocolate and butter mixture
- Pour into a lined brownie pan and cook for 20-30 minutes.
- Once removed let them cool before slicing
- Store in airtight container