Gratitude is the memory of the heart.
Jean Baptiste Massieu
I try, once a day usually in the morning, to humble myself and have a little gratitude session. It goes kinda like this:
Today I am grateful for ______________.
It isn’t fancy. It’s not always deep or super-contemplative. It just is.
It reminds me of all the positive things in my life (even if the best I can come up with is that I’m grateful I have long hair or I’m grateful that I’m out running or that the sun is shining). On days when the sun isn’t shining (outside my sparkling clean windows in the grey prairie sky, or in my not so sparkling mind) it serves to remind me of what is really important. It often reminds me that my world is so much bigger than me – to be thankful for others. It even helps to see some of the negatives things in my life in a new light.
Now, you may be wondering, how can a lowly brownie recipe be linked to gratitude? Very simply.
I am grateful for my Mom (have patience… you’ll see the link soon enough). I inherited my love for all things sweet, chocolate-y, home-baked and sinfully high in calories from my Mom. In a negative light one might deem this a curse. After all, it leads to numerous extra treadmill sessions, hours spent baking in the kitchen instead of accomplishing other “worthy” tasks, and really, really high grocery bills. But in a mindset of gratitude that love for a good chocolate dessert has lead to a commonality with my Mom, time spent together as she passes down her knowledge and skills. It has lead to fabulous desserts shared around a table of friends and family. I think it might have even lead to this blog and it most certainly led me to try out the wicked brownie recipe below.
On a more serious note: I am truly grateful for my Mom. She gave me my roots and my wings.
And my love for chocolate.
The BAKED Brownie
source: Baked New Frontiers in Baking
- 1 1/4 C all purpose flour
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 Tbsp dark, unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 1/3 C dark chocolate (60-72% cacao), coarsely chopped
- 1 C unsalted butter chopped into 1″ pieces
- 1 tsp. instant espresso powder
- 1 1/2 C sugar
- 1/2 C firmly packed brown sugar
- 5 large eggs at room temperature
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and grease a 9×13 baking pan.
- Whisk together the flour, salt, and cocoa powder.
- Put the chocolate, butter and espresso powder in a large bowl. Set the bowl in a saucepan of gently simmering water. Sir the mixture until completely melted and smooth. Turn off the heat and whisk in the sugars. Let the mixture come to room temperature.
- Add three eggs to the chocolate mixture and mix until combined. Add the remaining two eggs and whisk again until combined.
- Add the vanilla and whisk another fifteen seconds or so.
- **Do NOT over beat the brownie mixture at this point or your brownies will be cakey. This is NOT a cakey brownie recipe.
- Sprinkle the flour mixture over the chocolate mixture. Using a spatula (not a whisk. NO over beating!) fold the flour mix into the chocolate until just a tiny bit of flour mixture is still visible.
- Pour the brownie mixture into your greased pan and bake about 30-32 minutes. Your brownies are done when you insert a toothpick in the center and a few moist crumbs stick to it.
- If you can wait, let the brownies cool…. then enjoy!
- There will be no nutritional information for this recipe.