Blackberry and almond brownies

Blackberry and almond brownies

IMG_3959[1]

These brownies are literally the best brownies I have ever eaten. They are dense, chocolatey and squidgy, but with a sharp hit from the blackberry layer and a crunch from the almonds. They are a perfect dessert brownie: ideal served warm with a scoop of icecream and some fresh blackberries, but would not survive so well in a lunchbox…! The only slightly annoying thing about these brownies is that you have to wait at least, AT LEAST 30 minutes before cutting them up and diving in, otherwise they really don’t hold their shape. But that is the only annoying thing… apart from that they are absolute heaven!

IMG_3949[1]

Blackberry and almond brownies

For the brownies:

  • 4 eggs
  • 240g dark chocolate, roughly chopped
  • 240g salted butter
  • 320g caster sugar
  • 70g cocoa powder
  • 100g self-raising flour
  • 60g plain flour
  • 100g dark chocolate, chopped
  • 50g toasted almonds, chopped

For the blackberry layer:

  • 150g blackberries
  • 30g caster sugar

30 x 20cm brownie tin

  • Heat your oven to 180°C
  1. Make the blackberry layer by putting the blackberries and sugar into a heavy bottomed pan and heating until the sugar is dissolved, the cook until the blackberries are soft, but not mushy.
  2. For the brownies, first brown the butter by melting it in a saucepan, and then continuing to heat it until it bubbles and turns a golden brown colour, with a nutty smell.
  3. Put the sugar and chocolate in a large bowl and pour the butter over, then stir until everything has melted.
  4. Beat in the eggs, then sift over the flours and cocoa powder and stir together.
  5. Stir in the almonds and chopped chocolate until they are well dispersed.
  6. Spoon half the mixture into the tin and spread out evenly. Spoon over the blackberry mixture, then top with the rest of the brownie mix and smooth the top.
  7. Bake the brownies for 25 minutes, until they still have a bit of a wobble in the centre, but have a bit of a crust.
  8. Leave to cool in the tin for AT LEAST half an hour, then eat!

IMG_4022[1]

Advertisements
Cinnamon buns

Cinnamon buns

IMG_1012[1]

Baking with yeast has always scared me slightly, as there seem to be so many possible ways it could go wrong! The apricot couronne (https://elliespinkcakes.wordpress.com/2013/09/26/apricot-couronne/) I made back in September was my first real foray into the world of yeast, so I decided it was high time I conquered my fear!

I had a couple of problem making these, the first being that my mixing bowl has acquired a hole, and has now made its way to the bin. 😦 I wasn’t going to let this stop me however, so I decided the only course of action was to make the dough on the kitchen table! My second problem was that I don’t actually have a rolling pin here at uni… cue new use for a lemondade bottle!

IMG_1005[1]

These cinnamon buns are surprisingly easy to make, as they only require one rise. The dough is very quick to make, and only needs 5 minutes of kneading, so they are perfect if you don’t have much time. I made the dough and rolled the buns, then left them to prove whilst I went to a lecture, then came back and baked them – heaven! These buns are incredibly moreish, and they also make your kitchen smell amazing!

IMG_0995[1]IMG_0998[1]

Cinnamon buns

(recipe from http://sallysbakingaddiction.com/2013/05/08/easy-cinnamon-rolls-from-scratch/)

For the dough:

345g strong white bread flour

3 Tablespoons granulated sugar

1 teaspoon salt

1 packet dried yeast

120ml water

60ml milk

40g butter

1 large egg

 

For the Filling:

45g unsalted butter, softened to room temperature

1 and 1/2 Tablespoons ground cinnamon

50g granulated sugar

 

For the Glaze:

120g icing sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 Tablespoons milk

Directions:

  1. For the dough, set aside 50g of flour. In a large bowl, (or on the table…!) mix the remaining flour, the sugar, salt, and yeast together until evenly dispersed. Set aside.
  2. Heat the water, milk, and butter together in the microwave until the butter is melted and the mixture is hot to touch. Stir the butter mixture into the flour mixture.
  3. Add the egg and enough of the reserved flour to make a soft dough. The dough will be ready when it gently pulls away from the side of the bowl and has an elastic consistency.
  4. On a lightly floured surface, knead the dough for about 3-4 minutes. Place in a lightly greased bowl and let rest for about 10 minutes.
  5. Make the filling: After 10 minutes, roll the dough out in a 14×8 inch rectangle. Spread the softened butter on top.
  6. Mix together the cinnamon and sugar and sprinkle it all over the dough. Add more cinnamon/sugar if desired. Roll up the dough tightly. Cut into 11 even pieces and place in a lightly greased dish.
  7. Leave to rise for about 2 hours at room temperature, or overnight in the fridge.
  8. After the rolls have doubled in size, preheat the oven to 190°C. Bake for 25-30 minutes until lightly browned. You might need to cover them with silver foil.
  9. Right before serving, top your cinnamon rolls with glaze. Mix the icing sugar and milk together until smooth and drizzle over the rolls.

IMG_1001[1]

 

Baking (with essays!)

Baking (with essays!)

cake3

Sorry I haven’t posted for a little while, but the reality of essays and deadlines caught up with me a little bit last week, and I had to impose a baking ban! I am happy to say that these have all been handed in now, and I can bake freely again! This post will basically be a round up of everything I’ve baked in the last couple of days.

IMG_0917[1]cake5

So, it was Halloween on Thursday, and, not being able to choose between making a cake or biscuits, I decided to do both, and make this graveyard cake! I made the inside of this a chequerboard cake – inspired by Kimberley’s one in the Great British Bake Off final. The pink cake was supposed to be blood red, but for some reason our campus shop doesn’t stock red gel food colouring…!

cake1

Today it’s my flatmate’s birthday, so to celebrate I made her a brownie stack! This is basically brownies stacked up and drizzled with melted chocolate, then sprinkled with chocolate chips, to make a chocolatey browniey (yes that is a word!) pile, which is perfect to share.

IMG_0963[1]