What do you do when you hear of family or a friend in need? You can call, you can write, you can lend a hand, you can send flowers… I bake. It is the one thing I know I can do that will almost always bring a smile to the face of the receiver. I often bake when I know someone is down or in the need of some comfort and reassuring. But what to bake is the question? In this particular case I am shipping my baked goods back to New Jersey. I could send cookies, or make a quick bread; but then it hit me: Brownies! They are the ultimate comforting homey baked good I can think of. When served with a glass of milk they exude love & comfort, and that is just what I am going for. So I hope my aunt will be surprised when she receives some Old Fashion Walnut Brownies this weekend from me.
I have developed this recipe long ago and have been making them for years now. They are actually the same brownies that I put into my Brownie Chunk Cookies (minus the walnuts and a bit of salt). It is also the same recipe that was published in Bon Appetit Magazine’s issue of Best of Bakeshops back in September of 2008 when I had my bakery in Phoenix. I hope that you all try it and feel the love and comforting warmth that I believe they give.
Old Fashion Walnut Brownies
8 oz of unsweetened chocolate, chopped
8 oz of butter
4 cups of sugar
1 tbsp of Vanilla Extract
2 cups of Flour
1 tsp of sea salt
3 cups of walnuts
First, on a double boiler melt the chocolate and the butter. Stir and be sure you have a smooth consistency, remove from boiler and cool slightly (10 min). Also preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
Next, in a large bowl place your sugar and whisk it together with your eggs & Vanilla. Once combined whisk it with the melted butter and chocolate mixture.
Then, mix in your flour and sea salt. Once all is combined; fold in your nuts and set your brownie batter mixture aside.
Finally, line a 9 by 13 inch pan with foil and butter it well. Pour your batter into it and smooth out to even it in your pan. Place in the center of your oven and bake about 35 – 40 minutes until it feels set and does not jiggle when touched. Let cool before slicing and serving.
Note: If you chill the brownies, the foil will assist you to lift the brownies out of the pan easily. It also slices a lot more nicely if it is chilled first, as opposed to slicing it warm.