6 Ways To Make Better Boxed Brownies
How to Make Brownies Better
Brownies are enjoyed by millions of people each day and are a popular dessert. Known for their delicious, rich chocolate consistency, they are a delicious treat. Make brownies even tastier using these cooking and preparation steps, add ins and baking methods.
Choose the recipe with care.Often people pick the first recipe they see, but there are two different types of people; those who prefer cake like brownies, and those who prefer fudge consistency brownies. Decide which category you fall into. Here is how to tell what type of brownies the recipe makes:
- Brown sugar, butter and egg yolks suggest it will be fudgy.
- Egg whites and flour suggest it will be cakey.
Stir in the flour roughly.Mixing in too well will develop the gluten. Gluten is present in all wheat flour but usually only activated by kneading. Shift flour for a lighter texture to your brownies. While taking care to mix lightly, ensure that the flour is evenly distributed through the mix to avoid powdery, floury mouthfuls.
Stick to the recipe.It is important to stick to the right temperature, baking tray and quantities because brownies are very delicate.
- Find a recipe similar to the brownies you wish to create. For example, if you wish to added dried cranberries to your brownies, find a recipe that includes currants or raisins and substitute the cranberries for those ingredients.
Allow extra baking paper on both sides.Don't worry about greasing the pan, as long as you can lift out the brownies you will be fine.
Ensure the ingredients are at room temperature.Eggs, butter and other ingredients will mix into the batter better at room temperature. Mixing in melted butter also creates the risk of spoiling the chocolate, so take it out an hour before you need it.
Avoid using food processors.Using a food processor or electric beater will make the mixture stodgy and increases the incorporation of air. For dense and fudgy brownies, use a wooden spoon.
Turn up the chocolate.Add some cocoa powder or chocolate chips for a bigger flavor kick. You could even add some vanilla extract for even more flavor.
Chill the prepared batter before baking.Place the tray of raw brownie mixture into the refrigerator and allow it to chill for a few hours, so when the brownies bake, it will make the center fudgy with crispy edges.
Keep a close eye on baking brownies.There is nothing worse than a dry brownie.
- Use parchment paper: Using paper underneath can not only help with the brownies not sticking, but avoid over-browning on the base.
- Ensure the mixture is even. In order for brownies to cook consistently, the mixture must be level. Use a spoon dipped in hot water to spread out the batter neatly.
- Take out when still soft. Brownies firm as they cool, so toothpicks should come out moist.
- Cook to the right consistency. Brownies should be firm and sticky. To check, when you put a skewer it should come out with moist bits.
- Cook them for longer. Cook them for an extra ten minutes for a crunchy crust.
- Get to know your recipe: Sometimes it just takes experience to make a perfectly cooked brownie.
Add some fruit.Dried and fresh fruits work well, but stick to combinations you know such as cherries, prunes, pears, raspberries, raisins or dates.
Throw in nuts.Nuts provide add a delicious, crunchy flavor bite to brownies. Toast and chop up a handful of your favorite variety and add it to the mix.
Embody a twist.Use your imagination and get inspiration for your other favorite sweet treats to come up with a unique brownie flavor. Here are some delicious twists to try:
- Rocky Road: Combine shredded coconut, glacé cherries, marshmallows and peanuts into the brownies.
- S'mores: Add some marshmallow topping and broken graham crackers on top for an authentic campfire experience.
- Peppermint: Throw in some hard, crushed peppermint lollies with the batter and then spread some green peppermint icing on top.
- Chai: Stir in cardamom and ginger into batter, then press on melted marshmallows, butter, pepper and crisp rice cereal.
- Popcorn: Stir in roast peanuts into batter and press caramel popcorn on top.
- Peanut Butter: Stir in peanut butter and top cooked brownies with creamed peanut butter, then top with banana chips.
Infuse some spices.Spices like cinnamon, ginger, chilli and chai spices work great.
Incorporate a layer in the middle.Half the mixture, add a filling and top the remaining mixture. Caramel, peanut butter and cream cheese work well.
Add coffee.Adding coffee to brownies really brings out the chocolate flavor. Just add a few tablespoons of freshly brewed coffee.
Hide a few candy bars in the mixture.Add a few of your favorite chocolates and pour the remaining batter on top.
Add some liquor.Throw some into the batter, then splash some on top. Try chocolate liquor, Bailey's Irish cream, or use peppermint schnapps.
Put together condiments.Work in some jam, peanut butter, cream cheese or whatever you can think of into the prepared batter. Use your common sense, condiments like salt, pepper and ketchup do not taste good with brownies.
Go crazy.Invent new flavor combinations or put in additions you know already go well with chocolate, for example, pretzels or bacon.
Make them healthy.Brownies aren't diet friendly, but here a few recipe alters to help your waistline:
- Use different flours. Most recipes call for white flour, but since they don't need to rise, substitute healthy alternatives such as wholemeal and spelt.
- Use cocoa power. Find a recipe which uses cocoa powder instead of chocolate, cocoa powder is much less sweet, but still provides a strong chocolate flavor.
- Use dark chocolate. Aim for a minimum of 75% cocoa in the chocolate, it means the chocolate will have less sugar and a stronger chocolate taste.
- Add healthy additions. Most people add chocolate chips and caramel, but be bold and add something healthy such as nuts, dried fruit and fresh fruit.
- Substitute unhealthy ingredients. Cut down the sugar and replace it with some fruit or try oil instead of butter.
Wait for the brownies to cool.It is a lot easier to take the brownies out and cut them when they are cool. You could even put them in the freezer for a few minutes to make them even firmer to cut.
Make the brownies cold.Place the brownies in the fridge or briefly in the freezer for a more fudge-like slice.
Microwave brownies.Putting brownies in the microwave for half a minute will make them soft and piping hot.
Add a topping.Try giving them to dusting of cocoa, a touch of salt, a coating of icing sugar. You could also top hot brownies with chocolate chips and let them melt on or cover the brownies with your favorite frosting.
Add a sauce.Try serving with melted white chocolate, ganache, maple syrup or thick caramel sauce.
Mix into other desserts.Chop up a few brownies into chunks and add them into ice cream, cheesecake or even more brownie batter.
Turn it into a dessert.Brownies are finger food, but when added to cream, berries and roasted fruits, this becomes a third course.
- Creaming the butter and sugar will make your brownies lighter but don't add air to the mixture as this is bad apparently.
- Remember to not overdo the toppings.
- Some nuts like pistachios can go waxy.
- Brownies keep for up to six months in the freezer.
- Try brownies the next day, some people think that the richness will develop.
- Only use glass or shiny metal pans. Dark or non-stick pans will cause brownies to be soggy and low in volume.
- Don't go overboard with the flavors, the point here is to add ingredients which will compliment the chocolate.
Video: 6 Creative Brownie Recipes
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