The perfect fudgy chocolate brownie

by Nikki Temkin
the perfect fudgy chocolate brownie
Reading Time: 4 minutes

Is there such a thing as the perfect fudgy chocolate brownie? Not really. They’re like jeans. Finding the fit that feels right and flatters where it matters, is like hitting the sweet spot. And so it is with brownies. For some, the appeal lies in a crackly meringue-like crust with a melt in the mouth crumb. Free-spirited brownie eaters are happiest when faced with knobbly bits of nuts and chocolate chunks baked into the centre. And then we have the fudge lovers, which is where we’re at. written by Nikki Temkin

While I can’t claim that these fudgy chocolate brownies are the ultimate brownies, they most certainly are the fudgiest brownies I’ve made. They’re dressed for the occasion with a glossy ganache and speckled eggs.

Secrets to the best Fudgy Chocolate Brownies:

  • Use the best dark chocolate with a minimum of 70% cocoa solids
  • The temperature and baking time is calculated on the suggested pan size. Any deviation will alter the outcome of the brownie texture.
  • Melt the butter and chocolate over a low heat atop a pan of gently simmering water
  • Don’t overmix the batter.
  • Check for doneness with a toothpick – you’re looking for moist, sticky crumbs not gloopy batter.
  • When baked, the centre should be ever so slightly underdone and will set once cooled.
  • Cool completely in the tin before un-moulding.

PS. 

The first official printed brownie recipe was by none other than Fanny Farmer (really?) in 1896. The original recipe contained no chocolate, just cocoa.

What makes a brownie a brownie and not cake? It’s all in the high fat and sugar ratio to flour.

Like curries, brownies taste best the next day. The flavours will mature, mellow and bloom overnight.

Ingredients:

Makes 25 squares

  • 150g (1 stick plus 2 tablespoons) butter
  • 200g dark (70%) chocolate, roughly chopped
  • 160g (3/4 cup) castor sugar
  • 80g (1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon) brown sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 5ml (1 teaspoon) vanilla extract
  • 120g (3/4 cup) cake wheat flour
  • 30ml (2 tablespoons) cocoa powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine salt

Ganache topping

  • 100g 70% dark chocolate, roughly chopped
  • 50g milk chocolate, roughly chopped
  • 125ml (1/2 cup) coconut milk or fresh cream
  • Easter eggs and flowers, to decorate

 Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 160 C. Grease and line a 25cm square baking tin with parchment paper.
  2. Place the butter and chocolate in a bowl set over a pot of just simmering water. Heat gently until the chocolate mixture is smooth and glossy.
  3. Remove from the heat. Add the castor sugar and brown sugar and whisk to combine. Add the eggs, one at a time, whisking well between each addition. Stir in the vanilla extract.
  4. Sift the flour, cocoa and salt together. Add the dry ingredients to the chocolate mixture and fold through. Scrape the mixture into the tin and smooth over with an off-set spatula. Bake for 25 -27 minutes. Allow to cool completely in the tin.
  5. For the ganache, place the chocolate and coconut milk in a heat proof bowl set over a pot of simmering water. Heat gently until the chocolate is melted and glossy. Pour the ganache over the brownies and smooth over. Chill until set. Decorate with chocolate eggs and fresh edible flowers just before serving.Cook’s Note: Brownies are best served at room temperature. Set on the counter for 15-20 minutes before serving.
Fudgy Chocolate Brownies

Find the original recipe from Bibby’s Kitchen

FAQ’s for the perfect fudgy chocolate brownies

What’s the secret to achieving the perfect fudgy texture in chocolate brownies?

To achieve the perfect fudgy texture, it’s crucial to use high-quality dark chocolate with at least 70% cocoa solids. Additionally, be careful not to overmix the batter, as this can result in a dense and cake-like texture rather than the desired fudginess.

How can I tell if my brownies are done baking?

To determine if your brownies are done baking, insert a toothpick into the centre of the brownies. You’re looking for moist, sticky crumbs clinging to the toothpick, indicating that the brownies are cooked through but still fudgy.

Why is it important to cool the brownies completely in the tin before unmoulding?

Cooling the brownies completely in the tin is essential as it allows them to set properly. If you try to unmould them while they’re still warm, they may crumble or fall apart, resulting in a less-than-perfect presentation.

Can I use milk chocolate instead of dark chocolate for the ganache topping?

While the recipe calls for both dark and milk chocolate, you can experiment with using only milk chocolate if you prefer a sweeter flavour. However, keep in mind that using dark chocolate adds depth and richness to the ganache.

What’s the significance of the high fat and sugar ratio to flour in brownie recipes?

The high fat and sugar ratio to flour is what distinguishes brownies from cake. This ratio contributes to the dense, fudgy texture of brownies, as opposed to the lighter and airier texture of cake.

Why do brownies taste better the next day?

Brownies, like many baked goods, benefit from resting overnight as it allows the flavours to meld and develop. During this time, the moisture from the brownies redistributes, resulting in a richer and more intense flavour profile.

Can I substitute coconut milk with fresh cream for the ganache topping?

Yes, you can substitute coconut milk with fresh cream in the ganache topping recipe if you prefer. Both options will yield a creamy and indulgent topping that pairs beautifully with the fudgy brownies.

How should I store leftover brownies?

To keep your leftover brownies fresh, store them in an airtight container at room temperature for up to three days. Alternatively, you can refrigerate them for up to a week to extend their shelf life.

Can I freeze brownies for later consumption?

Yes, you can freeze brownies for future enjoyment. Once they have cooled completely, wrap them tightly in plastic wrap and foil to prevent freezer burn. They can be stored in the freezer for up to three months.

Why is it recommended to serve brownies at room temperature?

Serving brownies at room temperature allows their flavours to fully develop and their texture to soften, resulting in a more enjoyable eating experience. Allow them to sit on the counter for 15-20 minutes before serving to achieve the best taste and texture.

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