Have you ever had one of those days were every little thing bugs you? You know the days where you make breakfast for everyone but yours ends up barely warm and no matter what he says, you want to strangle your husband? So I am having one of those days. The bad news is that everyone I encounter today, not just my husband and whining kids (nothing out of the usual), but also my other family members makes me feel like growling. Here's what I know:
Everyone has days where everything outside of their control goes wrong.
More often than not, they are not all out to get you.
Finally, when everyone seems to drive you crazy, it is most likely you.
I hate to admit that is me, just like everyone else I want to believe it isn't my fault but I know it is me. I am hormonal today. (Ok the last couple of days. Today is just worse.) In moments like this though I try to remember something a good friend once said: You bring your own weather to the picnic.
So if I want to shake this mood, I am going to have to change it. Thus, my decision to make brownies. Not brownies with maple syrup or honey but real, sugar brownies that I wouldn't let my kids eat.
I have a confession: I like cakey brownies. Okay, please don't run away screaming yet. I swear there must be a few of us as some cookbooks and brownie packages add the advice to add an extra egg for a more cake like brownie. If you are one of them, please let me know in the comment section so I can later say that there are plenty of people who like cakey brownies. If not, suggest a recipe to try and change us cakey brownie eater's minds.
Now my dad always made the best cakey brownies so I called him for the recipe. After he gave it to me, I remember my last attempt at making them. They call for shortening and I don't usually cook with it. Some sites suggested that I could substitute butter so that was what I did last time. They were overcooked on the outside and very dense. After my failed attempt, I did some searching and found that I should lower the temperature when cooking with butter and extend the time. But today, I just don't really have the patience for that kind of uncertainty.
I Googled and searched and came across this Brownie recipe from The Joy of Baking. The author said her brownies were between fudgy and cakey. I was sold as it was the only recipe that wasn't fudgy or chewy. I will admit that I misread the title and thought it was from the Joy Of Cooking. By the time I realized that wasn't the case, I had already written the recipe down and the authenticity of the author no longer mattered. (See patience comment above.)
The only deviation from the recipe I did was the recipe called for 3 large eggs and I had only 2 large eggs so I also used my 2 smallest eggs. These are the ingredients I used:
5 oz Ghirardelli bittersweet chocolate broken into pieces
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
1 cup white sugar
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
2 large eggs plus 2 smallish eggs
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
First I started the oven to 350 degrees. Next, I melted the butter and chocolate until everything was gooey, stirring constantly so that nothing burned. Then I turned off the burner and added the cocoa and sugar, whisking until it was fully blended. I let the mixture cool a bit (I use Viking pans and they hold the heat) and buttered the pan. Once a little cooler, I whisked in the vanilla, followed by an egg, whisk, then another egg, whisk, then the last two small eggs and whisked it smooth. By this point I could smell the chocolate and my mood had lifted, the process being a bit zen for me. I added the flour and salt together and whisked it all. Finally pouring it into the buttered 8x8 pan.
I baked it for 30 minutes because my convection oven tend to run on the longer side of cooking times.
The verdict? Delicious. I let them cool only long enough to not burn myself and the top was a little too crunchy and the insides a bit gooey. As they cooled though (I came back 20 minutes later) The moisture inside wasn't gooey, it was cake like and spongy. The extra moisture soften the top too. I am eating them out of the pan with a spoon as I type and I feel better with every scoop.
Note: I don't not condone eating to deal with your feelings. I am not recommending eating to feel better. Please take note, consuming more calories than your burn can contribute to weight gain. I am not a doctor or a nutritionist. It is a common opinion in the medical field that excessive sweets can be harmful to your health. If you are concerned see your doctor.