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maimai16 Apr 7, 2008 04:46 AM

Why is it that my brownies end up somewhat like cakes? I've been following all the instructions carefully but still the same results. What's the secret to make perfect brownies?

  1. r
    Reene902 Apr 7, 2008 09:56 AM

    If you're making brownies from scratch, make sure you're using all purpose flour and not self-rising. My best friend can never remember which jar is which and has made that mistake several times.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Reene902
      Kelli2006 Apr 7, 2008 10:01 AM

      Self rising flour will make cakes out of your brownies. I used either AP or pastry flour for a VERY fudgy product.

    2. k
      Kelli2006 Apr 7, 2008 09:35 AM

      I have a brownie recipe that I have posted a few times. These are quite dark and dense but definately fudgey. If you like them fudgier, you can pull them a few minites easry, when they are still slightly gooey in the center. A toothpick should not come out clean in brownies, as that you make them overdone.

      preheat the oven to 325°F. Prep a 9x12 or similar pan with grease and cocoa powder.

      6 oz of bittersweet chocolate, chopped
      8 Tbls unsalted butter, chopped
      2 TBl of cocoa, dutched or otherwise
      3 Lg eggs
      1/4 tsp salt
      1-1/4 Cup granulated sugar
      1-1/4 Cup AP flour
      1 tsp vanilla
      1 cup chopped nuts, optional

      Grease and use the cocoa to to prep the pan, reserve the remaining cocoa.

      Melt the chocolate and butter in a double boiler, stirring occasionally. Stir in the remaining cocoa, vanilla and salt. Add the sugar (and optional nuts )and incorporate well. Stir in the beaten eggs, I at a time. Add in the flour and incorporate well,(20-30 strokes)

      Pour the batter in the prepped pan and bake for 30-35 minutes.

      cool on a rack for 20 minutes. Cut, eat, repeat as necessary.

      I occasionally frost these brownies with a very stiff semisweet ganache, but that is very optional. The brownies should be very cool or even chilled before applying ganache.

      1. m
        meleyna Apr 7, 2008 09:12 AM

        I've always had great success with Ina Garten's Outrageous Brownies. Every time I make them people rave about them.


        1. lupaglupa Apr 7, 2008 06:01 AM

          One trick is to mix them as little as possible. Increasing any of the liquids will make them more moist but that is tricky as you run the risk that they will seem uncooked (which is okay for some people).

          2 Replies
          1. re: lupaglupa
            maimai16 Apr 7, 2008 06:42 AM

            what do you mean with "mix them as little as possible"? is it ok to leave a bubble of flour?im looking for a crumbly (dry texture) outside but fudgey/moist on the inside...

            1. re: maimai16
              lupaglupa Apr 7, 2008 09:51 AM

              mostly make sure you barely mix the eggs - just combined enough that the yolks are incorporated but adding no volume. Also fold as gently as you can. Ift the flour is sifted into the bowl then you will gat fewer clumps to deal with - I often leave really small ones without a problem.

          2. k
            Kagey Apr 7, 2008 05:09 AM

            I did a LOT of research on this a while back, because I was looking for the secret to chewy brownies. I finally found what I was looking for in the 1974 Joy of Cooking recipe for Brownies Cockaigne. For me, these were the perfect texture, but they were less chocolatey than I'd wanted. So I used more chocolate. Whammo. Perfect brownies. I think that this amendment makes them pretty similar to Nick Malgieri's Supernatural Brownies. That recipe should be easy to find if you Google it. If you want me to post the JoC recipe, let me know and I will.

            4 Replies
            1. re: Kagey
              maimai16 Apr 7, 2008 06:39 AM

              can you please post it kagey?im going to try it... im dying to make a perfect brownies from scratch..does it have a crumbly outside and fudgey inside?a friend gave me such brownies last christmas since then im craving for one...

              1. re: maimai16
                goodhealthgourmet Apr 7, 2008 06:58 AM

                maimai: i found this re-post of the JoC recipe on recipelink. hope it helps!

                Brownies Cockaigne - 30 brownies

                Description: "Almost everyone wants to make this classic American confection. We guarantee good results if you follow the -> signals. Brownies may vary greatly in richness and contain anywhere from 1 1/2 cups of butter and 5 ounces of chocolate to 2 tablespoons of butter and 2 ounces of chocolate for every cup of flour. If you want them chewy and moist, use a 9x13" pan; if cakey, use a 9x9" pan. We love the following."

                Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
                Melt in a double boiler:
                1/2 cup butter
                4 oz. chocolate
                ->Cool this mixture. If you don't, your brownies will be heavy and dry. Beat until ->light in color and foamy in texture:
                4 eggs ->at room temperature
                1/2 teaspoon salt
                Add->gradually and continue beating until well creamed:
                2 cups sugar
                1 teaspoon vanilla
                With a few swift strokes, combine the cooled chocolate mixture into the eggs and sugar.
                ->Even if you normally use an electric mixer, do this manually. Before the mixture becomes uniformly colored, fold in, again by hand:
                1 cup sifted all-purpose flour
                And before the mixture is uniformly colored, stir in gently:
                1 cup pecan meats
                Bake in a 9x13" pan for about 25 minutes. Cut when cool. Wrapped individually in foil, these keep well 3 or 4 days.
                A good way to serve Brownies is to garnish with whipped cream.


                1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                  Kagey Apr 7, 2008 08:16 AM

                  Yup, that's the one. As I mentioned, I use more chocolate, usually 7 oz rather than 4. Also, I omit the nuts because people in the house are allergic. They turn out sort of chewy and fudgy. More fudgy if you undercook them slightly.

                  1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                    Chile Pepper Apr 7, 2008 08:51 AM

                    This is the recipe that my Gram absolutely swears by. She stresses that the cooling the chocolate step is VERY important!

              2. Tehama Apr 7, 2008 05:07 AM

                8 hits came up at Epicurious when I searched "fudgy brownies" -- maybe some of these recipes will shed a little light on your quandary :-)

                1 Reply
                1. re: Tehama
                  maimai16 Apr 7, 2008 06:40 AM

                  thanks for the reply... im going to put it on my to try lists of brownie recipes :D

                2. n
                  NE_Elaine Apr 7, 2008 04:58 AM

                  Are these brownies made from scratch or from a box?

                  On the back on my box mix, the directions state to use 2 eggs for fudgey brownies and to use 3 eggs for cakey (is that a word???) brownies.

                  If you are making these from a recipe, I would try a similar substitution in the recipe or search for a fudgey brownie recipe specifically. Maybe Alton Brown has done a show on the science of making brownies fudgey.

                  OT - I just saw his show on the science of making chocolate-chip cookies whether you wanted them thick and chunky or thin and crispy. It was very interesting.

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: NE_Elaine
                    gfr1111 Apr 7, 2008 05:27 AM

                    Yes! Alton Brown has done a "Good Eats" episode on the Food Netwoork on cakey versus dense, chewy brownies. Since all but a few copyright protected recipes show up apparently permananently on the Food Network's web page, I am certain that you will find it there. (Incidently, I've never seen Mr. Brown's recipes with the "for a limited time only, due to copyright considerations" (or somesuch caveat) on the Food Network's recipes section. However, I have noticed this on some of Ina Garten's recipes.

                    1. re: gfr1111
                      NE_Elaine Apr 7, 2008 05:59 AM

                      Thanks for the info!
                      I will have to go check out his fudgey brownie recipe. I have been trying to get away from baking out of a box, but brownie mix is almost a kitchen staple. :-)

                      1. re: gfr1111
                        maimai16 Apr 7, 2008 06:34 AM

                        im going to check it later... thanks for the info.

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