Last Friday night, I invited some friends to a Pinterest Party. There is nothing better than delicious food, some great girlfriends and teaching them how to "pin" their favorite pictures, ideas and websites. It started when a few people had asked me for invitations into Pinterest, then came the comments on Facebook. How do I use this? How do I pin pictures? How do I sign in? Will you have a party?
In my real life, I teach social media marketing. Whenever there are new networks setting trends, I'm usually fully engaged. I try and learn as much as I can, knowing that in a very short period of time, I will be teaching people how to use the network. If you would like, you can follow me on Pinterest.
I was looking for a brownie recipe and came across a chocolate-stout brownie recipe from Bon Appetit. The combination of beer and chocolate piqued my interest so I was going to try these chocolaty treats. The picture reminded me of a Texas sheet cake. I was heading to the liquor store so grabbing a can of Guinness Stout would be easy.
The brownies were easy to make, but watch the stout while you are reducing it on the stove. As mine started to boil, it bubbled over (ugh! what a mess). Once I got it under control, it reduced fairly quickly. As I read the reviews on the Bon Appetit website, people suggested that the cooking times were incorrect. I have a convection oven and mine took about 45 minutes. In a conventional oven, I might go closer to an hour. I started checking at 35 minutes but they do take longer than suggested.
The brownies came out perfect. We used bittersweet chocolate which gave the brownies a very dense and rich taste, not overly sweet. Everyone enjoyed them saying they loved the wonderful chocolate flavor that wasn't overpowering. I did make an observation though, they tasted better the second day. If you have the opportunity to make them a day ahead, I would make that suggestion. I found they were still dense, but less sticky. The next day, everyone kept eating little slivers of the brownies, trying not to admit they wanted a big piece. The chocolate-stout brownies disappeared with ice cream as well as large glasses of milk.
Who says beer and chocolate aren't a good combination.
1 cup of stout beer (we used Guinness - * UPDATE * Recently we used a Spiced Sweet Stout called Mexican Radio from Bluejacket in DC - AMAZING! Don't be afraid to try different types of stout.)
12 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1 cup of butter
1-1/2 cups of sugar
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon of vanilla
3/4 cup of flour
1 teaspoon of kosher salt
4 ounces of bittersweet or semi-sweet chocolate, chopped (or bits)
2 tablespoons of butter
1/4 teaspoon of kosher salt
1/4 cup of reduced stout
1. Preheat oven to 350°. Line a 9x9x2" metal baking pan with aluminum foil, leaving a 2" overhang.
2. Bring stout to a boil in a medium sauce- pan, watch to make sure it doesn't boil over; cook until reduced to 1/2 cup, about 12 minutes.
3. Let cool. Reserve 1/4 cup of stout for glaze.
4. Stir 12 oz. chocolate and 1 cup butter in a medium metal bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water until melted and smooth.
5. Whisk sugar, eggs, and vanilla in a large bowl to blend. Gradually whisk in chocolate mixture, then 1/4 cup stout from pan.
6. Fold in flour and 1 1/4 tsp. salt. Pour batter into prepared pan.
7. Bake brownies until surface begins to crack and a tester inserted into center comes out with a few moist crumbs attached, 35-40 minutes. (We cooked ours a bit longer more like 50-60)
8. Transfer pan to a wire rack and let cool for at least 20 minutes.
1. Stir remaining 4 oz. chocolate in a medium metal bowl set over a sauce-pan of simmering water until melted and smooth.
2. Add reserved 1/4 cup reduced stout, remaining 2 Tbsp. butter, and 1/4 tsp. salt; whisk until well blended.
3. Pour warm glaze over brownies. Let stand at room temperature until glaze is set, about 40 minutes.