Friday, March 24, 2006


My first foray back into the baking world after my sugar detox was mostly a bust. But that's okay. We still ate it.

(ps--still mainly staying off of sugar, but every now and then I am allowing myself a "treat.")

March 22, 2006
Occasion: Brownies and Documentaries With The Stinky
Name of Cake: Supposedly Fudgy Brownies
Constituents: failed fudgy brownies with raspberry sauce and whipped cream

the pretty photo of a brownie slice plated with the sauce and cream got deleted, so you'll have to enjoy this one instead

So on a whim I decided that Stinky and I should bake brownies and watch movies. In my head, I thought it would be easy and yummy. In my head, the world is a perfect place. I should know better than to trust my head.

I got the recipe out of the Fannie Farmer Baking Book. I would say that I have enjoyed maybe 45% of what I have baked out of the book. Although the failure of the brownies to be fudgy was my fault, I also think that there are better fudgy brownie recipes out there.

I was pretty sure I had all the necessary ingredients in my (ahem) fairly well stocked baking pantry, and I did, except that the chocolate I had wasn't unsweetened. It was 70% dark and I thought, that's fine, I'll just decrease the amount of sugar I need to add. No problem!

That wasn't the problem. The problem was that I melted the chocolate and butter in a pan over low heat, and didn't stir frequently enough. The problem was that I didn't think twice about melting chocolate over low heat when it really should have been in a double boiler. The problem was that I overheated the chocolate which separated--making it look like the batter has curdled--and the oils didn't emulsify into the batter.


Which leads to this problem:

foamy brownies; what the hell is this?

I would have pulled them out of the oven sooner, because with all the moisture from the butter lost the resulting chocolate mass was pretty dry, but to pull them out at the foamy stage would have meant oily brownies. Not fun. So I let the oil bake off or dry up or whatever you let it do.

Harumph. The brownies were thin and dry and more cakelike in texture. The chocolate taste was good (I use Green and Black's 70% chocolate...good stuff) but the brownies were a little bitter. Needed more sugar.

The raspberry sauce was nice, could have used a little bit of lemon juice to brighten up the flavor but it did its job marvelously.

sweet nectar through the sieve

The whipped cream could have used a little more sugar but I didn't complain.

About those brownies: both Stinky and I agree that there could have been more. More chocolate flavor, more gooey fudgy texture, more richness and satisfying cloyingly good fudgy brownie I-need-a-nap feeling. I know not overheating the chocolate would have helped, but I would also like to blame part of it on the recipe. Fannie, dear Fannie, you let me down!


  1. This was so entertaining, I'm happy to see you're baking again! Great pictures, love the foam!! Stinky is brave.

    Still, be ware of the sinister sugar! Granule by granule it creeps back into the lives of unsuspecting addicts until one day waking up from a weekend bender with a crazy look in the eyes and realizing, “Shit, it happened to me again!”

  2. yes, i've already had to reprimand myself for already breaking my own rules about when it is appropriate to eat sugar and i've only been off the fast for 5 days. thanks for your warnings.

    stinky is very brave. he dates me, he must be ;)