Wednesday, April 4, 2012

White Chocolate Brownies = Hot Blondies?

A few years ago when I dabbled in baking, I somehow managed to make a batch of white chocolate brownies (or blondies) that tasted really, really good. The recipe I found online used hazelnuts and had a raspberry sauce that I never bothered to try and make. I'm fairly certain I undercooked the blondies and they ended up being amazing. It happened twice! 

Recently I decided to make them again because I felt bad for baking something not so good. I wasn't going to tell the story, but here it goes now because I even have pictures. While in one of my classes, one of my students (yes, the baking queen herself) was looking at the while taking a break from her work. Being the great teacher that I am, I peered over her shoulder, admiring all of the pictures of delicious baked goods. 

"I'm going to bake something tonight, Eunji. You have inspired me." I say, feeling the need to declare this to her.

"So will I." she replies but then hesitates "Wait." She opens her agenda and checks what homework she has. "Yes, so will I." 

There is a silence in which we both clearly agree to exchange whatever we make.

Unfortunately for me, I tried to make coconut macaroons which I love but clearly messed up. See, before they went in the oven, everything looked fine. Afterwards, I couldn't even stand the thought of taking a picture! It's a recipe from a colleague of mine who brought them to a potluck we had once and they were amazing. It will be shared soon...
Looking good and ready to go in the oven...
I couldn't come to school empty handed, so I brought one in a plastic baggie. I handed it to my nemesis and she took it without a word. Later during my science class, she wordlessly hands me this beautiful cupcake!

Chocolate cupcake with a cream cheese filling
My feeling of guilt lasted for about as long as it took to eat the cupcake, which wasn't very long. Don't worry, I waited until after my class left. Of course, I felt guilty enough that I needed to go home and redeem myself which brings us to

White Chocolate Brownies, adapted from Critical Mastication
1 cup flour
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup white sugar
2 large eggs
12 oz. white chocolate, coarsely chopped (One package of baker's chocolate has six 1 oz, pieces of chocolate)
8 tbsp (1/4 cup or 120 mL) unsalted butter, melted
1 tsp vanilla or half a vanilla bean
Optional: 1 cup toasted hazelnuts, chopped
Optional: Raspberry sauce (see original post)

Preheat the oven to 350 F. Butter and flour a 9x9 baking pan. Sift together the flour and salt, and set aside.
In a mixing bowl, beat the eggs at high speed until frothy, I do this by hand but you can use a mixer if you like. Gradually add the sugar, and beat for about 3 minutes, until thick and pale. In a double boiler, melt 7 ounces of the chocolate and gently fold into the egg mixture. Add the melted butter, vanilla and stir well; the mixture may appear curdled. Add the flour and salt, and mix thoroughly. Fold in the remaining 5 ounces of chocolate. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for about 20 minutes, until a tester or toothpick comes out not-quite clean. It could take up to 30 minutes to bake, but the edges start to brown before the centre. My last batch came out quite gooey in the middle and most of the time they set to a delicious, soft brownie. Let cool in the pan and cut into squares.

My 'double boiler', a pan on top of a pot of water.

Gooey blondies
bouquet of lovely words