This recipe will make you over 150 inch (2.5cm) square, extra dark, super gooey, internationally infamous caffeinated chocolate brownies! They're also fantastic if you'd like to raise money for charity!
You'll probably want to scale this down, but when I make them I go industrial! :)
- 1.5kg of plain dark chocolate
- 1.5kg of unsalted butter
- 1.25kg of caster sugar
- 20 free range egg yokes (and half the whites)
- 400g of 100% cocoa powder
- 300g of plain OO flour
- 50g of apple pureé
- 2 tbsp of honey
- 1 tsp of baking powder
- 5 pinches of salt
- a few grams of caffeine powder
- A few hours before you begin (over night is good) let the unsalted butter warm up naturally to room temperature, it should be very soft
- About four fifths of chocolate should be melted gently in a bowl above boiling water and removed from the heat once melted
- In the meantime, the warm and soft unsalted butter should be mixed together with the sugar to form a smooth, consistent paste
- Now the pureé and honey can be mixed in
- The egg yolks and whites should be lightly beaten and then also added and mixed
- Slowly add the flour, baking powder, and salt, mixing everything in smoothly as you go
- Now add the melted chocolate (which should be cool but still runny) and the cocoa powder, again mix until smooth
- The caffeine powder should be added with care (and you can avoid this step and make fantastic plain brownies instead!)
- First decide how many brownies will result by cutting up your baking tray into a grid
- Next decide what strength each brownie is going to be ie. 70-100mg is caffeine equivalent with an espresso
- Then multiple the number of rows by the number of columns by the caffeine weight to work out how much you need
- Weight out this amount carefully and mix it in really well
- Finally, the final fifth of chocolate should be broken up into small-ish crumbs and added to the mixture and mixed in too
- The resulting mixture can be spooned into grease-proof baking paper lined trays, just over half an inch (1.5cm) thick
- Your oven should be set to about 140℃ and the tray added to the middle of the oven
- After about 20mins keep checking periodically,remove when the centre is gooey but not runny, and if it is dry then remove immediately!
- And put the tray somewhere cold/cool to stop the cooking process - ideally an ice-bath to quench it quickly - this helps give the brownies their gooey centres
- Once cool, or even when a bit warm, eat and enjoy! - carefully! ;)
Notes and Warnings
- This recipe and its result should be treated with care. You should consult with your doctor if you have any heart issues or are extra sensitive to caffeine due to any medications you are taking. More information on caffeine toxicity.
- By making these brownies you are taking full responsibility for your health and those you give them to - I cannot be held responsible for any adverse effects that result from making and/or consuming them.
- You must warn anyone you give these to! This is very important!
- Caffeine is a bitter, white compound that sublimes at about 180℃ (although I do not know how this changes in a brownie batter), so the oven is kept cool (and a couple of oven thermometers can make all the difference - almost science!). It also has a well documented stimulant effect on our central nervous system, hence you need to be careful about how much you put into the mix, and how much you consume.
- As an example of how much caffeine to use, imagine you have a tray that will be divided up into a grid with 10 columns and 15 rows, and that you wanted the brownies to be about 160mg of caffeine each (about a double espresso) - then you would need to add 10 × 15 × 160mg = 24000mg, which is 24 grams, of caffeine which should be thoroughly mixed in.
- In my experience, between 150 and 200mg of caffeine in brownies about an inch (2.5cm) square produce a pleasing taste - the bitterness of the dark chocolate is extended by the bitterness of the caffeine in a very pleasant way - but do experiment to find your perfect point and let me know how you get on!
- Also, do experiment! An addition of crushed walnuts is common, but try adding a little nutmeg (especially over the Yuletide), or chili (fresh or powdered), I have even experimented with Kernöl with surprisingly excellent results!