My oven is back in business (yay!), so I decided to try Mint Chocolate Brownies from the December 2006 issue of Everyday Food. Unfortunately, my experience was disastrous, but – BUT! – I will make these again, knowing what I know now. Lesson #1: Sometimes it’s a good idea to Google your recipe title before you attempt it.
I started by lining at 8 x 8 baking pan with foil, leaving an overhang on all sides. (This let me lift the brownies out to cut them, rather than cutting them in the pan.) I buttered the foil and set the pan aside.
I brought an inch or so of water to a simmer in a saucepan and then set a Pyrex bowl over (not in) the water. I melted a stick of butter and 8 ounces of chocolate in the bowl until the mixture was smooth. I removed the bowl from the heat and whisked in 1 cup of sugar and 3/4 teaspoon of salt until the mixture was smooth. Next, I whisked in 3 eggs. Finally, I whisked in 1/2 cup of flour and 1/4 cup of unsweetened cocoa powder.
I spread 1/3 of the batter in my foil-lined 8 x 8 pan. I arranged 25 York peppermint patties over the top of the batter in a single layer, leaving a narrow border on all sides.
I spooned the remaining batter over the top of the patties and smoothed the surface. Here’s where things went wrong. The recipe says to bake these brownies at 350 F for 45 – 55 minutes. Wrong, wrong, wrong. Dr. O asked me if something was burning at 32 minutes. I opened the oven, and my once-promising pan of brownies had basically blown up – the brownies were puffed high, cracked, and had a dark spot in one corner (the burning smell, I’m sure).
I took them out and basically wrote them off. I decided to let them cool overnight, though, to see if they would fall and if anything could be salvaged. I hopped online and Googled “mint chocolate brownies everyday food.” I found multiple posts about how *good* and how *easy* these were (grrrr), but also came across several posts saying they were done way before the recommended cooking time. (Most folks said 30 – 35 minutes was about right instead of 45 – 55 minutes.) So, I’m sure that was my problem. I’ll check them at 30 minutes next time.
Anyway, they fell a bit by morning. I cut all the edges off (and the dark spot!) and what was left over was actually pretty delicious. I guess a dose of kitchen drama makes for a good story at least. 🙂
TIPS: My brownie batter was very elastic – don’t let this freak you out. Also, I was tempted to buy just one bag of peppermint patties since it had 24 pieces in it, figuring that one wouldn’t really make a difference. I’m glad I bought two, since 25 patties cover the entire surface perfectly.
Recipe link: Mint Chocolate Brownies