Super Chocolate Brownies

For some people brownies are a popular picnic dessert. The particular combination of bitter, astringent, and sweet tastes, and the slightly dry quality of this rich cookie recipe is a good one for anyone who loves to eat chocolate. Kapha types should still eat moderately of them. The only thing wrong with these delicious brownies is that they are so moist when they first come out of the oven that you have to wait until they are completely cool to cut them. They are best made by hand and not in a food processor or with an electric beater.

Makes 1 dozen

2 squares (2 ounces) unsweetened chocolate

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter or ghee

1/3 cup unbleached flour

1/4 cups cool water

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1/2 cup cocoa (best quality available)

2 cups unbleached flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

2 cups sugar

1 cup coarsely chopped pecans or blanched almonds

1. Grease a 7 x 11-inch pan. Preheat the oven to 350°F.

2. Melt and stir the chocolate and the butter together in a small heavy pan over low heat. Set aside when it is well blended. In a small saucepan, mix 1/3 cup flour with a litde water to make a paste, then add the remaining water and cook over moderate heat, whisking constantly, until thickened, about 5 minutes. A few lumps are okay. Remove from the heat and stir in the salt, the vanilla, and the chocolate mixture.

3. Measure the cocoa, unbleached flour, and baking powder into a large bowl. Stir well or sift together. Mix in the sugar, the liquid mixture, and the nuts. Stir until just blended, about 1 minute. The mixture will look very thick. Spread it into the pan and bake for 30 to 40 minutes on the center oven rack. The brownies are done when they just start to leave the edges of the pan. For moist brownies, a knife inserted in the middle will not come out completely clean. Remove from the oven and cool completely before cutting.


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