Basic brownie – basically delicious!
Where were brownies when we were growing up? (or am I showing my age here??) We had chocolate cupcakes and chocolate cake, a good old chocolate crackle and even chocolate slice, but no chocolate brownie. No fudgy chocolatey centre with a slight oozy moistness with that crisp outer crust – so good! And so easy to make.
I was given the recipe for this brownie from my friend Morag and it became known as “playgroup brownie” in our household. When the boys were young, I could whip up this melt and mix one-pot wonder , pop it into the oven, jump into the shower and be ready to go for a play with friends in under an hour. As the boys got older, it was the perfect thing for little helping hands to measure out ingredients and stir it all together. I’m sure it would make the perfect thing for young cooks to start out on as well – just none of my boys really took to baking. (And before you mention how antsy I get when someone gets on the business side of my kitchen counter Wendy, remember this was way before then and we had a “kitchen in the round”) Whilst now on less of a rotation than in “the olden days”, it is a good quick solution to providing morning or afternoon tea. Today Mr L is going to a friend’s house for a swim and “hang out”(I hesitate to type “play” – how uncool for 12 year olds!) so perfect to take along and share with his friends. In our house we love these brownies – I love the crispy corners, Mr L loves the goopy centre, and TM is happy to eat any/all of the above.
Start out by preheating the oven to 180°C and line a 20cm square cake tin with baking paper. Grab a medium size saucepan (this looks too big just for the butter but it becomes your mixing bowl as well – less washing up is a bonus!) and add 125g butter. Melt butter over a medium heat and add in the cocoa. Cook for about a minute – you will know when it is done by the wonderful chocolatey smell coming from the pot.
Set the pot aside to cool just slightly while you grab all the other ingredients – sugar, eggs, vanilla, flour, baking powder, coconut and chocolate chips. Now mix in the sugar and when combined, add the eggs, beating well after each addition. Add in the vanilla, then the flour, baking powder and coconut and stir until just combined. Now adding the chocolate chips is apparently optional – I have only ever left out when we did not have any in the house! Today Mr L chose milk chocolate – he really struggled to move past the Reese’s peanut butter bits but was not sure if Matthew was a PB fan, so played it safe.
Now pop into the prepared cake tin and place on middle shelf in the oven for 30-35 minutes – the edges should be a little crusty and pulling away from the sides of the tin, and the top firm but a little movement in the centre is okay (and preferable to Mr L – if you like a firmer brownie you may want to cook for longer)
Cool for 5 minutes in the tin before turning out (if travelling to a park or a friends, you can leave in the tin until you get there) Cut into squares and dust with icing sugar if you’re feeling a bit fancy.
Soooo much nicer than something picked up from the bakery, and soooo easy to do! Enjoy!
- 125g butter
- ¼ cup cocoa
- 1 cup caster sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ½ cup of dessicated coconut
- ½ cup flour
- ½ tsp baking powder
- ¾ cup chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 180°C and line a 20cm square cake pan with baking paper.
- Melt butter in a medium saucepan. Add cocoa and stir over low heat for 1-2 minutes - it will smell very chocolaty when ready
- Remove from heat and add sugar - stir to combine.
- Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Mix in vanilla and coconut.
- Sift in flour and baking powder and mix until just combined. Add chocolate chips.
- Pour brownie mixture into prepared cake tin and bake for 30-35 minutes. Brownie will be ready when it is pulling away from the sides and crisper on the edges although may still be slightly sticky in the centre.
- Leave to cool in tin for 5 minutes before turning onto a wire rack to cool completely.
- Cut into 16 squares and dust with icing sugar to serve