Actually, you can choose any kind of nuts you like: I made this batch with pecans and then the next with almonds. And the next and the next, etc. Of course you can leave off the nuts and it will be just as scrumptious.
I took the brownie to MrsDrWho's new house drinks and nibbles and, shockingly, the guests ate it all!! I had to bake her some more, and then some for The GardyGardeners and The Vet.
If you want to, you can make the salted nut topping yourself. I decided to use the same recipe from the Sticky Date Cupcakes. Otherwise, you can buy some vanilla almonds or honey macadamias from the supermarket. Either works exceedingly well.
These are super easy and super fast. They are mixed up in the saucepan and then straight into the tin. Being quite rich, you can cut the brownie into 24 pieces easily, even 30 at a stretch. They are moist and the salty sweetness of the caramel nuts and chocolates is divine. The slice will freeze well too.
This recipe is from the BH&G new Chocolate Heaven cook book, and I've already made quite a few heavenly treats. With 196 recipes for around $10, it is a bargain.
Salted Pecan Brownie makes 16-24 pieces
- 120g good dark chocolate, chopped
- 120g butter, cubed
- 330g (1 1/2 cups) caster sugar
- 3 eggs
- 1 tspn vanilla extract
- 150g (1 cup) plain flour
- 1 tbspn cocoa (20ml) Dutch cocoa is best but more expensive
- 1/4 tspn baking powder
- 180g dark choc bits, 100 in the mix and 80 for the topping
- 150g (1 1/2 cups) pecans, chopped
- 1/4 tspn sea salt flakes
Or to make your own salted toffee pecans:
- 150g (1 1/2 cups) pecans
- 110g (1/2 cup) caster sugar
- 1 1/2 tspn sea salt flakes
- and 20ml of brandy if you choose
Preheat the oven to 180*C. If you are making your own salted toffee nuts, mix the ingredients in a bowl, and then spread in a single layer on a tray lined with baking paper. Pop into the oven while it is heating. Keep an eagle eye on the mix, it can catch very easily. It can take up to 15 minutes, but more or less depending on your oven. When the nuts are in a golden brown toffee, remove from the oven and allow to cool. Break or chop coarsely when cold. If they do catch at the edges, just break the burnt pieces off, the rest will still taste delicious.
Grease and line a 26 x 15 x 5cm slice tin.
Put the 120g of chocolate and the butter into a saucepan over a low heat and melt, stirring, until smooth. Cool slightly and then add the sugar. Mix well.
Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well with a spatula or wooden spoon. Then add the vanilla extract. Sift over the flour, cocoa and baking powder, add 100g of the choc bits and fold until just combined.
Pour the mixture into the slice tin, smooth the top and then sprinkle with the remaining choc bits and the nuts and salt OR the salted toffee pecans you made. Bake for 25-30 minutes. It should be just set in the centre, but firm and perhaps a little cracked at the edges. Cool in the tin on a rack.
Cut into pieces and enjoy this incredibly easy and impressive brownie!!!