Food: Comforting Chocolate Brownies

Bleak, wet weather calls for one thing… Comfort food! Ordinarily, I’d be heading to my local Starbucks for a latté and chocolate fudge brownie but as it’s ‘No Spend November’ I needed to get a bit more creative with stuff lurking in my cupboards!

Chocolate brownies are really pretty simple in terms of ingredients – all you need are eggs, butter, flour, sugar and of course chocolate. I also like to add vanilla essence and chopped walnuts but as I didn’t have these in store, I figured it doesn’t make that much difference! Cooking chocolate is obviously very bitter so a lot of recipes call for a lot of sugar to balance this out but I’ve found no one has ever complained when I’ve reduced the sugar – kids included!

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Katie really enjoys cooking and I like to include her as much as possible when preparing all types of meals. She’s not at an age where ‘healthy’ eating really means much, but I think it’s important that she is introduced to a broad range of foods and flavours. Cooking meals from scratch provides plenty of opportunity to try raw ingredients and to see what all the things smell like. Whilst chocolate brownies may not be the best thing for her to eat on a daily basis, it did provide a learning experience – for example, it was hilarious watching her discover cooking chocolate! As soon as she saw it she insisted she would break it into pieces (I’m sure she was planning to scoff the lot!) but after tasting a sliver ended up munching an apple from the fruit bowl instead!

I find when cooking with children it’s much easier to weigh out all the ingredients first so it’s all ready to go. Even the youngest children can help with this and I often then just give Katie a bowl of something to mix if there’s a trickier bit to be getting on with!

On this occasion, Katie very helpfully mixed the eggs whilst Grandma melted the chocolate and butter in a bain-marie (and I fed Thomas!). When this was completed, the sugar and eggs were stirred in before sifting in the flour which was then folded until smooth.

I had prepared the tin by lightly greasing it with butter and lining the bottom with grease proof paper so it was into the tin and then oven for 25 minutes.

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Usually with cake, I want to be able to stab it and for the skewer to come out clean when removed, but with these I was looking for cakey crumbs. The result? Chewy, moist chocolate brownies that make you want to eat the lot! Perfect with a mug of coffee as the rain persists!

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