I had originally intended on making macarons this week. I bought everything I needed and set out to make them when I got home from work. I checked out some of the posts from Crystal at Windshield Diaries because she is a macaron baker extraordinaire, and…well, I guess I didn’t realize they were so intense. Even though they only consist of four ingredients, baking them perfectly is an art form. A lot of recipes call for “aged” egg yolks set out at room temperature for 24 hours. And there are dozens and dozens of troubleshooting guides. Then I saw this quote from The Times posted in Not So Humble Pie’s Macarons 101:
Even the professionals struggle with macaroons, says Meike Beck, chief home economist at the Good Housekeeping Institute. “Three seconds of overbeating and they’re ruined.” The institute spent a month making hundreds of batches of macaroons, trying to perfect a recipe. In the end it gave up. “They’re best left to the professionals. Macaroon recipes do work. But they are not consistent.” – Times Online
Sigh. Clearly I hadn’t properly prepared myself. Maybe I’ll try these…another time.
So I have the cocoa and eggs and big ‘ole jar of Nutella I was planning on using for the filling of the macarons. What to make, what to make…
Nutella brownies? Ok, sounds good.
I had seen a recipe for Peanut Butter and Nutella Brownies on Noble Pig a while back, but decided to tweaked it a little bit to make it extra Nutella-y.
On the first go-round, I made brownie cupcakes, because cupcakes are so goshdarn cute. However, if I were going to make them next time I would have to tweak the recipe a bit – because there’s more surface area on cupcakes, the brownie cupcakes were far too chewy and not nearly gooey enough. They were cute, though, especially with the turkey toppers.
The brownie bars, though…wow. Super moist and amazing.
(recipe adapted from Noble Pig)
1 cup butter (2 sticks), melted
2 cups granulated sugar
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
4 eggs, room temperature
1 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup Nutella
Baking Tempurature: 350 degrees
Baking Time: 30 minutes
- In a medium bowl combine flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
- Over low heat, melt butter. Stir in sugar and vanilla extract until well combined.
- Add eggs one at a time to butter mixture, mixing completely after each addition.
- Whisk in cocoa mixture to butter mixture until combined.
- Warm Nutella in the microwave in 20 second intervals until softened. Stir into the batter.
- Pour into greased 9×13 baking pan and bake for 30 minutes.
- Garnish with icing, hazelnuts, or chocolate chips if desired.