Muscovado Blondies

I’ve been preparing my book launch. That’s my excuse for having abandoned Sister Bakers for so long. Not sure what my sister’s excuse is. Sam? 🙂

 

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While most of you might think I’m just a cupcake connoisseur, some of you might know that my actual profession is writing. I published my first book, Ghostboy, Chameleon & the Duke of Graffiti, ten months ago, and my second, The Masterpiecers (a story of twin sisters set between prison and reality TV), will be out mid-April. To celebrate the upcoming launch, I’ve created a series of giveaways on my author page where my faithful readers can win kindles, gift cards, free books, neat mugs with quotes from the book… If you’re interested in winning free, very cool stuff, click here.

Anyway, this morning, I am taking the time to share with you a recipe I adore: luscious, chewy, dark brown sugar blondies. They are to die for, and go extremely well with a cup of steaming coffee, and a great book, like The Masterpiecers. 😉

 

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The dark bits in the blondies are chunks of dark sugar, not chocolate. Although, these would be super yummy with chocolate chips. Then again, what wouldn’t be yummy with chocolate chips?

 

For 12 people

200 g muscovado sugar (dark brown sugar)

140 g white sugar

2 eggs

250 g butter, room temperature

450 g all-purpose flour

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp fleur de sel (salt)

 

  1. Line a rectangular baking pan with parchment paper and preheat your oven to 325 F or 165 C.
  2. Cream the sugars with the butter until light and fluffy.
  3. Add the eggs and beat until just incorporated.
  4. Beat in the flour and baking soda and salt. Don’t overmix.
  5. Bake for 30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out with a few wet bits attached.

 

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Black Magic Brownies

We have half a dozen brownie recipes on our website. Yet I believe there’s always space for a new one (The Milk Chocolate Brownie recipe is my all-time favorite, even though I’m a dark chocolate fan). This one is like the dark chocolate counterpart to the Milk Chocolate recipe. It’s cooked at a lower temperature and the chocolate and butter are melted over the stove top before going into the batter. The result is a thin crispy layer on top and super chewy chocolate batter in the middle.

 

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On a side note, I found this advice on Pinterest which I cared to share with all of you. See image below:

 

brownie guide

 

Makes 12 brownies

Ingredients:

180 g unsalted butter
150 g chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 ½ cup (90 g) all-purpose flour
2 tbsp cornstarch
½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
1 cup (200 g) sugar
4 eggs
1tsp vanilla extract

 

  1. Preheat oven to 325 F or 160 C. Either grease a 13x9x2-inch baking pan or line it with a sheet of parchment paper.
  2. In a small saucepan over low heat, melt the butter and chocolate, stirring constantly, until the mixture is completely melted and smooth. Set aside to cool.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the sugar and eggs on high speed for 2 minutes, until fluffy. Add cooled chocolate mixture and vanilla. Beat on low speed until combined. Add the flour, baking powder and salt, and beat on low speed until just combined, then give it a final stir by hand with a rubber spatula. Spread the batter in the prepared pan.
  4. Bake until brownies appear set and a knife blade inserted in the center comes out with some gooey batter, about 25 minutes. Cool before cutting.

 

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Cocoa Brownies

Okay, okay… I know we have a lot of brownie recipes – and we keep on calling them the best (which they are) – but there is always room for one more variant.

These brownies are chewy and super rich, and yet contain no melted chocolate. I made these last night for a last minute dinner and they were such a hit that I was ordered (yes, ordered) to put them up on the website.

They take 15 minutes to make and 25 minutes to bake.

 

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Cocoa Batter

160 g salted butter, melted

1 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

1/2 tsp baking powder

1 tsp vanilla extract

2 large eggs

2/3 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 cup chocolate chips

 

1. Preheat oven to 325 F or 170 C and line a square baking pan with parchment paper, or just grease it.

2. In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar. Add the eggs and whisk until bubbly.

3. Add the cocoa powder, baking powder, and vanilla extract. Pour in the flour. Mix until creamy.

4. Fold in the chocolate chips.

5. Bake for 25 minutes or until the top is set and a knife comes out with just a few crumbs attached.

 

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Meringue Cookie Bars

By now, you know that I have a love for all things chocolate. I found this recipe and thought it was an original take on the traditional blondie. The meringue adds lightness and a certain crispness to the chewy cookie bar crust.

 

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We made these bars with my son to bring on one of his playdates. I’m not sure who ended up eating more of them, but I strongly believe it was the mommies. Although the kids had extremely sticky fingers which makes me suspect they polished up quite a few.

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1/2 cup butter, room temperature

½ cup white sugar

1 tsp vanilla

1 whole egg + 2 eggs, separated

1 1/2 cups flour

1 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

2/3 cup semisweet chocolate chips

2/3 cup light brown sugar

 

  1. Preheat your oven to 350°F or 180°C and line a square or rectangular baking pan with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, cream together butter, white sugar, 1 whole egg plus 2 egg yolks and vanilla extract.
  3. Beat in flour, baking powder, and salt and mix until just combined.
  4. Fold in chocolate chips and spread in your prepared baking pan.
  5. In a clean bowl, whisk the 2 remaining egg whites until stiff peaks form, about 2 minutes on high.
  6. Fold in the brown sugar and stir until smooth.
  7. Spread on top of unbaked cookie crust and bake 25-30 minutes until top is golden brown.
  8. Allow to cool completely before cutting into squares.

 

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Summer Coconut Bars

Summer is about relaxing and spending time with the kids so I have to admit I’ve been staying out of kitchen. Cooking is so time-consuming. I love it but the day goes by too quickly when I spend it in front of the oven.

So I decided to bake something super simple and that can please all. The only thing I would do differently is add chocolate chips. Believe it or not, I had absolutely no chocolate around the house.

They’re really delicious without them, but for the flavor-lovers, it would just add that extra zing.

Summer Coconut Bars - sisterbakers.com

Makes 20 bars

 

1 cup butter, softened

1 1/4 cups brown sugar

½ tsp fine sea salt

2 eggs

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 cup shredded coconut

1 tbsp vanilla extract

1 tsp baking powder

½ cup chocolate chips (optional)

Summer Coconut Bars - sisterbakers.com

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F and grease a sheet of parchment paper. Place the sheet in a rectangular baking pan.
  2. Cream sugar, butter, and salt. Add the eggs and beat until smooth.
  3. Whisk in the flour, the shredded coconut, the vanilla, and the baking powder. Add the chocolate chips now if you want chocolate.
  4. The dough will be sticky. You’ll have to press it into your baking pan, somewhat evenly (don’t worry, it will spread).
  5. Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out with just a few sticky crumbs.

EU

Summer Coconut Bars - sisterbakers.com

Peanut Butter Brownies

By the number of brownie recipes I’ve posted, I think you can tell how much I like brownies. I think, if they were considered nutritious, that’s all I would be eating. Brownies and peanut butter (which is my second drug of choice after chocolate).

I combined the two to make my dream dessert. They’re not as rich as the milk chocolate brownies that tasted like caramel, but they’re incredibly heavenly nonetheless. If you like Reese’s Pieces, than you’ll love this.

 

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Brownie Batter

4 tbsp (60g) of butter

1/3 cup oil

1/3 cup cocoa powder, unsweetened

60 g semisweet chocolate, chopped finely

½ cup + 2 tbsp of boiling water

1 cup brown sugar

1 ¾ cups all-purpose flour

3 eggs

¼ tsp salt

1 tsp baking powder

1 tbsp vanilla extract

½ cup mini chocolate chips

 

  1. Grease the bottom of a square or rectangular baking pan.
  2. Place the butter in a microwave-safe bowl and heat 30 seconds or until melted. Add the boiling water, cocoa powder, and chocolate and allow the mixture to come together.
  3. Whisk in the sugar, oil, and eggs.
  4. Add the flour, baking powder, salt, and vanilla and beat until your mixture is perfectly smooth. Fold in the chocolate chips.
  5. Pour into your prepared baking dish.

 

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Peanut Butter Batter

4 tbsp (60 g) melted butter

120 g organic unsweetened peanut butter, chunky or smooth

½ tsp fleur de sel

1 tbsp vanilla extract

1/3 cup powdered sugar

 

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F or 180 C.
  2. Whisk all the ingredients until smooth.
  3. Pour the batter on top of the brownie batter. Drag a knife through it so that it twines with the chocolate batter.
  4. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes.

 

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Milk Chocolate Brownies

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This recipe wasn’t meant to be on SisterBakers because it was kind of a repeat on the Perfect Brownie recipe. However, not having all the proper ingredients, I made these with what I had on hand: milk chocolate, no cocoa powder, and brown sugar.

They tasted like pure caramel with just a hint of dark chocolate. So I decided they needed their own spot on the blog. Even if you’re a dark chocolate lover, like myself, you will fall head-over-heels in infatuation with these gooey, perfect little bites.

 

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Serves 14-18

 

1 cup unsalted butter

500 g milk chocolate, chopped up

2 tsp fleur de sel

2 cup all-purpose flour

1 tsp baking powder

1 cup brown sugar

4 large eggs

1 tbsp of vanilla extract

1/4 cup bittersweet chocolate chips

 

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  1. Line a rectangular baking dish with oiled parchment paper or simply use a silicone mould. Preheat oven to 350°F or 180°C.
  2. Put the butter and chocolate in a bowl and melt in the microwave (1-2 min). Whisk and let cool while you get the rest of your batter ready.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk the eggs, the sugar, and the vanilla extract on medium speed until very pale yellow (about 2 minutes).
  4. Turn the speed down to low and pour in the chocolate mixture. Beat until fully incorporated.
  5. Add the baking powder, salt, and flour, and beat until smooth.
  6. Fold in the chocolate chips and pour into your mold.
  7. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until a knife comes out with just a few crumbs attached to it.

 

My 1 year-old daughter (and favorite model) — in case you couldn’t tell — was mesmerized.

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She was desperately trying to get her little pudgy hands on one of these chocolatey beauties.

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Chocolate Caramel Bars

I’ve been spacing out my posts so that you only get the best of the best—tested on many and approved by all.

This bar recipe is to die for, and I’m not a caramel-addict like my little sister and mother.

 

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When I set out to make this recipe, I was dead-set on using semisweet chocolate (I rarely cook with any other kind). But of course, it was the one thing I was missing in my pantry. So I had to use milk chocolate. Poor me. 😉

 

They turned out divine.

 

I strongly recommend using dark chocolate, though. It will offset the sweet caramel to perfection.

 

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The Sweet Base

300 g of flour
200 g of butter
75 g of sugar
½ tsp salt

 
The Sticky Filling

300 g sweetened condensed milk
50 g of butter

30 g maple syrup

½ tsp fleur de sel

 
The Bittersweet Topping

150 g of semisweet chocolate, chopped
10 g of sunflower oil

 

 

  1. Preheat oven at 170°C and line a square baking tray with parchment paper.
  2. Mix the flour, the sugar and salt, in a large bowl. Cut the butter up into small cubes and add it to the flour. Work with your fingers until the dough becomes crumbly.
  3. Press the dough into the baking tray and bake for about 25-30 minutes, or until the shortbread browns lightly.
  4. For the caramel filling, combine all the ingredients in a thick-bottomed saucepan, and cook for about ten minutes over medium heat, stirring constantly. When the mixture takes on a thick, golden color, pour over the cooled base and tap the pan on the work surface in order to obtain a smooth layer.
  5. Melt the chocolate in a double boiler or in the microwave, then whisk in the oil and let it cool before pouring over the caramel. Place in the refrigerator for at least 2-3 hours before unmolding.
  6. Cut using a sharp knife. For a perfect cut, run the blade under hot water, dry it, then cut.
  7. They keep perfectly in an air-tight container in the refrigerator for one week but they’ll never last that long, trust me!

EU

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Yogurt Brownies

Don’t you just hate when you’re in the mood for a particular dish and all ready to start baking when you open your fridge and realize that an essential ingredient is missing? That’s why I’m always on the lookout for delicious alternatives to classic recipes. When I saw this recipe pop up on Bon Appétit, I was immediately intrigued. I changed it a bit to suit my taste (not crazy about the tangy greek yogurt/chocolate combo), and I have to say the resulting brownies are incredibly delicious. The yogurt replaces eggs and leaves you with a moist chocolaty, fudgy brownie. This is definitely a must-try recipe! Oh and you could probably get away with calling it healthy…ish!

Recipe:

Yogurt Brownies (adapted from “Fudgy Yogurt Brownies” by Bon Appétit)

4 tbsp salted butter (or unsalted if you prefer, just add a 1/2 tsp of salt to the recipe)

2 tbsp vegetable oil

1 cup bittersweet chocolate chunks/chips, divided

3/4 cup granulated sugar (add 1/4 cup if you like your brownies sweeter)

1/2 cup good quality cocoa powder

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 1/4 cup plain yogurt, mild and full fat (Recommend: Brown Cow Cream Top Plain Yogurt in the US)

1 cup all-purpose flour

1/4 tsp baking soda

  1. Preheat your oven to 350˚F. Lightly grease an 8×8 in. baking dish and set aside.
  2. Melt the butter, oil and 1/2 cup chocolate chips together and stir until smooth (double-boiler style or microwave).
  3. Add the sugar and cocoa powder. Stir until fully incorporated.
  4. Add the vanilla extract and yogurt and mix well.
  5. Add the flour and baking soda and blend until just combined.
  6. Fold in the remaining 1/2 cup of chocolate chips.
  7. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake 30-35 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean with just a few crumbs attached.

US

Chocolate Cream Bars

After a 3-week cooking hiatus, I am back to my stovetop, armed with oven mits and whisks. Craving chocolate (as always), I decided to restart my baking addiction with these chewy multi-layered chocolate bars. The contrast between their fluffiness and denseness make them every chocolate-lovers dream.

If you like orange and chocolate or orange and cinnamon, add 1 tsp of orange zest or cinnamon to the crust and ½ tsp to the filling. If you like chocolate and nuts, add ½ cup chopped toasted pecans to the chocolate crust. The possibilities are truly endless and mouth-wateringly delicious.

Chocolate Crust

¾ cup butter, room temp

1/3 cup white sugar

1 egg

1/3 cups unsweetened cocoa powder

½ tsp salt

½ tsp baking powder

1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour

  1. Preheat oven to 325 F and spray a rectangular or square baking pan with non-stick powder.
  2. Beat butter, sugar, and salt until creamed.
  3. Whisk in the egg, then the cocoa and baking powders.
  4. Finally add the flour. Your dough will come together in a ball which you’ll then press into your pan to even it out.
  5. Bake for 15-20 min or until the edges of the crust slightly retract from the sides.

Chocolate Marshmallow Topping

1 ½ cups heavy cream

1 ¼ cups semisweet chocolate chips

4 eggs

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 tsp salt

1 cup mini marshmallows

  1. Heat the cream in a microwave-safe container. Pour it over the chocolate chips and whisk until melted.
  2. Add the vanilla and the salt.
  3. Beating continuously, add the eggs, then the marshmallows.
  4. Pour over baked crust.
  5. Bake for another 30-35 minutes or until slightly puffed and center is just set.
  6. Let cool 15 minutes at room temperature, then 2 hours in the fridge before cutting into bars.

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