Tuesday 11 August 2009

Walnut Brownies

Take a brownie recipe with a fine blog pedigree (made by Deeba, Travellers Lunchbox and Cookbook Catchall). Make them with cheap chocolate and old peanuts, then wonder why they taste too sweet, too cakey, too dry, too crumbly and not quite right (you can see them in the photo below). Try the recipe again with best lindt chocolate. This time, leave out the olive oil that defines them and substitute walnut oil.

So now I am confused about the name – it wouldn’t be right to take the ‘olive’ out and call them oily brownies. Finally settle on calling them walnut brownies. That seems right given this is my winter of walnuts.

E is a little lukewarm about them. The edges are a little dry and he tells me they aren’t chocolatey enough. I feel a bit the same way when I sample them warm. They are better the next day when we are eating the middle pieces. We both find we love them. Rich and gooey, just like brownies should be.

I would tell you more but there is a crying baby demanding my attention. So you will just have to believe me when I say these are excellent and I must rush. So my advice is this: make them, use good chocolate, eat them in small squares at room temperature and impress your friends and family with them.

Walnut Brownies Adapted from Adventures of an Italian Food Lover by Faith Heller Willinger

100g dark chocolate, at least 70% cocoa solids, broken up
⅓ cup walnut oil
½ cup plain flour
¼ tsp sea salt
2 large eggs
⅔ cups brown sugar, not packed
½ cup white choc chips
⅔ cups toasted walnuts nuts, chopped
1 tsp vanilla extract (I forgot)
Extra walnuts for sprinkling (optional)

Melt chocolate and stir in oil. Add sugar and eggs, and stir till glossy. Gently mix in flour, salt, walnuts, choc chips and till just combined. Spread into a greased and lined 20cm square cake tin (or in my cake a 22cm round cake tin) and bake at 180 C for 22-26 min. It is ready when the top is just dry and a toothpick is still a little moist when inserted in the middle. I did mine for 26 minutes and it could have been a little more gooey. Cool in the tin and cut into squares.

On the stereo
The Best of Blur


  1. YUMMY. One day I will be brave enough to try making brownies, they seem hard to get right!

  2. I really like hearing how recipes go through different iterations - though it's funny that your has ended up needing a new name! The second batch sounds really good, and the walnuts even up its healthy credentials!

  3. Gorgeous. Been a winter of walnust 'round here, too.

    Blur will fix you up nicely - nothing cheers me more than a bit of Damon Albarn being Very British.

  4. Thanks Flower - hope you do try brownies - they taste so good when fresh and gooey

    Thanks Lysy - I would still like to try them and have success with the olive oil but the walnut oil was calling my name!

    Thanks Lucy - blur and walnuts make a great winter - strange I have not used walnuts much lately until this winter when suddenly I just can't get enough of them

  5. I tend to think brownies in any form would be yummy, but I'm sure the lindt/walnut oil ones were spectacular!


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