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Tuesday, March 25, 2008

When Life Gives You Raspberries...


Only in the past few months did I first hear of Donna Hay. While I am glad to have found her, I am still somewhat bummed that I didn't find her a long time ago. I feel slightly jipped by this. Oh well, at least now I know. And I am SO glad!

The last HHDD round was for Coconut Chocolate Tarts and we were to put a twist on them. I chose to add some raspberry flavor and make these Chocolate Coconut Raspberry Swirl Tarts. They were incredible. Since then, it seems like I keep coming back to the chocolate-raspberry connection.

Which brings us to this post. I found this recipe on Epicurious and thought that their photograph was so beautiful that I knew I would have to try this. Now, I am so glad I did. Though my photography skills aren't as good as the pro's at Epicurious, I think these lstill ook pretty fantastic. I have to tell you, they taste even better.

If you love a brownie that is slightly dense, dark and a little cakey, with a little fudgeiness too (is that even a word?), then this is a great choice for you. I will however mention, that, as you can really see in the photo with the Vanilla Frozen Custard below that these brownies are dark. If you aren't into dark chocolate, then I imagine you could easily substitute semisweet. I, however, love dark chocolate, but my husband wasn't as impressed as they were too dark for him.

For some reason I realized that I don't have a 9-inch square baking pan (seriously! what is up with that!?) in my kitchen I had to use a 7-inch dish that I have. Obviously this didn't fit all the batter, so I will show you in another post what I did with the rest of the batter. However, the measurements below are for a 9-inch pan, since I'm sure the rest of the world isn't as lame as I am. (I think I had a pan, and it broke, and I've still never replaced it!)

Anyway, these Raspberry Spiked Brownies were incredible and easy to make, as brownies should be. Yet they look all dressed up and impressive. Since these brownies got all dressed up, I couldn't leave them with nowhere to go and show off, so I am sending them over to the Monthly Mingle for Spring Fruit Sensations, hosted by Abby of Eat the Right Stuff for this round on behalf of Meeta, the event's creator.

I ate my brownie all by itself, because it really didn't need anything else in my opinion. However, since I had just made a batch of Vanilla Frozen Custard (too rich to be just "ice cream") I served a huge bowl of ice cream with one of the brownies to my husband (he is an "ice cream" fanatic). I've given you the recipe for both the brownies and the frozen custard below. They are amazing, together or each on their own.


Raspberry Spiked Brownies

200 grams (7 ounces) dark chocolate, chopped
250 grams (8 ounces) butter
1 3/4 cups brown sugar
4 eggs
1 1/3 cups plain (all-purpose) flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/3 cup cocoa, sifted
1 1/2 cups raspberries, fresh or frozen* (I used only about 3/4 cup since it was a much smaller pan)

*If using frozen raspberries there is no need to defrost them first. You can also use fresh or frozen blueberries.


Preheat the oven to 180°C (355°F). Place the chocolate and butter in a small saucepan over low heat and stir until melted and smooth. Place in a bowl with the sugar and eggs. Sift over the flour, baking powder and cocoa and mix to combine. Pour into a 23 cm (9 inch) greased square cake tin lined with non-stick baking paper. Top the mixture with the raspberries and bake for 30–35 minutes or until set. Serve warm or cold with thick (double) cream or vanilla bean ice-cream.


Vanilla Frozen Custard (Extra-Rich Ice Cream)
(Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Vanilla Bean Ice Cream Recipe - Book: Ice Cream)
1 1/2 cups half-and-half
1 1/2 cups heavy (double) cream
7 large egg yolks
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract

In a heavy 2-qt saucepan, combine the half-and-half and 1 cup of the cream. Cook over medium heat until bubbles form around the edges of the pan, about 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, combine the egg yolks, sugar, and remaining 1/2 cup cream in a bowl. Whisk until the mixture is smooth and the sugar begins to dissolve.

Remove the cream mixture from the heat. Gradually whisk about 1/2 cup of the hot mixture into the egg mixture, whisking constantly, until smooth. Pour the egg mixture into the saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon and keeping the custard at a low simmer, until it is thick enough to coat the back of the spoon and leaves a clear trail when a finger is drawn through it, 4-6 minutes, approximately. Do not let the custard boil. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl.

Whisk in the vanilla extract. Place the bowl in a larger bowl partially filled with ice cubes and water. Stir occasionally until cool. Cover with plastic wrap, pressing it directly on the surface of the custard to prevent a skin from forming. Refrigerate until chilled, at least 3 hours or up to 24 hours.

Pour the custard into and ice-cream maker and freeze according to the manufacturer's instructions. Transfer the ice cream to a freezer-safe container. Cover and freeze until firm, at least 3 hours or up to 3 days, before serving.

Makes about 1 Quart


Do I have to cut this into bars? I think this one could just be my piece!


Melanie said...

Wow! I'm a HUGE dark chocolate fan and can't wait to try these. They look so delicious and the ice cream combined with the brownies - let's just say I have no self-control when it comes to brownies and ice cream.

Gretchen Noelle said...

What lovely brownies! They look terrific studded with raspberries!

Steph said...

Wow, these look amazing! Rasberries and chocolate...mmmm. Great recipe!

Jenny said...

I love everything about this recipe! Great job!!

Anonymous said...

i love brownies with raspberries in - what a great choice! thanks for joining the monthly mingle.

Deborah said...

I love the chocolate/raspberry combo, too. I actually made a chocolate cake on Easter (that I need to post about!) and served it with fresh raspberries. Yum!

Meeta K said...

Holly are you kidding? I love your photos better - it makes me want to dive straight in! LOL! I love raspberries and chocolate and this looks just perfect for Fruit Sensations.
Thanks for joining the MM with this entry!

RecipeGirl said...

I haven't yet discovered Donna Hay. Your brownies look better than Epi's. I LOVE rasp. and choc. mixed together. DELISH!

Anonymous said...

You know what you have published here is probably considered sinful by some. It looks and sounds truly decadent and you have me craving a taste right now!

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