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Apr 7, 2008 04:46 AM

I'm desperate... need your help! =(

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?

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  1. 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

      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

        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

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

      2. 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

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

        2. 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

            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

              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

                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

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

            2. 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

                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

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