Monday, March 10, 2008

Guinness Brownie Recipe


Another year, another Guinness recipe. This is a great brownie recipe ANY day of the year, but it's perfect for St. Patty's. These brownies do not taste like beer, but you can detect the smoky flavor of stout, which is a dream date for the intense dark chocolate in this recipe. Read on if you're a brownie fan (and who isn't?!) or check out last year's Guinness cupcakes with espresso buttercream (or this Guinness Beef Stew while you're at it).

I've been eating these brownies for a few days now, feeling guilty about not sharing them with you. Last week was so busy with work, and it carried right into the weekend (but don't feel bad for me; work is good news if you're a freelancer). Now that things have calmed down a bit, I can finally get back to my blog!

This is an easy recipe that I found on here on about.com. "About" is not my favorite recipe source, due to a truly awful cookie recipe I tried years ago, but this one looked solid compared to a few of the other Guinness brownie recipes I turned up. Then I saw that one of my favorite bloggers also used it with good results. There is not a lot of sugar in this recipe, so I think the white chocolate is there to add some additional sweetness, and the brownies are definitely sweet enough for me.

I recommend a good quality bittersweet chocolate (I used Lindt 70% cocoa), but I'm sure you could get away with semisweet too. The texture is fudgy, but not in an under-baked sort of way. I think the Guinness imparts a unique bubbly lightness, so these brownies are not as dense and heavy as your typical fudgy brownie. To my surprise, I like them just as much as these peanut butter swirl brownies. Both are rich and chocolatey, but that's where the similarities end. Just give them a try for St. Patty's Day, and you'll see what I mean!

Guinness Brownies
Adapted from About.com and Cookie Madness
I used Ghirardelli unsweetened cocoa powder; Hershey’s or Green & Black’s Organic are two other good brands. I used Lindt 70% cocoa bittersweet chocolate, which I believe is widely available in large, 3.5 ounce bars that cost about $2 each. I have to mention that this is also my favorite everyday eating chocolate. The price makes it a steal, and it’s just as satisfying to me as more expensive brands. For white chocolate, I used a Ghirardelli white chocolate baking bar. I don’t know if they are that different, but I think the bar has superior flavor to the Ghirardelli white chocolate chips, which I think are totally tasteless (but I’m not a fan of white chocolate). Finally, be sure the beer is at room temperature so you don’t bring an unwelcome chill to your other ingredients.
Makes 24 brownies (in a 9 x 13 pan)

1 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup unsweetened natural cocoa powder (not Dutch process)
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into cubes
8 ounces dark bittersweet chocolate, chopped
4 ounces high quality white chocolate, chopped
4 large eggs, at room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
1 1/4 cup Guinness Stout beer, at room temperature
3/4 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a 13 x 9-inch baking pan with nonstick foil (or regular foil coated with nonstick spray); or, use a nonstick pan coated well with nonstick spray.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa and salt; set aside.

Melt the chocolate in the microwave: In a medium glass bowl, or other microwave-safe bowl, combine the dark chocolate, white chocolate and butter. Microwave on medium power for 45 seconds and stir. Continue microwaving and stirring at 30 second intervals, reducing to 15 second intervals as the chocolate is nearly melted. Stop just when the chocolate is smooth (all microwaves are different, so take care not to burn it). Set aside.

Combine the eggs and sugar in a large bowl and mix on high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add melted chocolate in two additions, beating on medium speed until combined. Add flour mixture in two additions, beating on medium speed until combined. Add one-third of the Guinness and the vanilla and whisk until combined. Repeat two more times with remaining Guinness.

Pour brownie batter into prepared pan. Sprinkle chocolate chips evenly over top. Bake for 23 to 27 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean (mine took exactly 25 minutes). Cool completely in pan, cut into 24 squares and serve. These are excellent eaten within 24 hours (possibly longer; I’m not sure), and they freeze very well.

16 comments:

Lisa said...

Thank you so very much for providing the perfect recipe to prepare for my best friend who adores guinness and brownies.

Bliss in a pan indeed.

LisaRene said...

It's fun to see all the beer recipes on blogs, due to St. Patrick's day. Beer really adds something special to baked goods.

I would second your feeling regarding "About". I have found some great recipes as well as some horrible ones, I think it depends on who is presenting them. "About" is kind of like Food Network in that you have your favorite hosts, like their style and trust their recipes. Glad these turned out well for you!

Julie said...

Lisa: she will LOVE these, and so will anyone else who eats them, seriously:)
Lisarene: Yeah, I totally agree; and beer's not just a novelty in cooking. It makes these brownies really light. You're right about "About" (hehe). But I'm still not forgiving them for that horrific cookie recipe.

Leslie said...

These look really good, I can't wait to try them. Thanks for the recipe.

Lalaine said...

They look so fudgy, rich and sinful!

I just want you to know this: I have this little black dress that I bought and have been trying to squeeze myself into these past weeks. It's obscenely over-priced and a tad too small but I thought it might give my diet a boost. Sleep tight tonight knowing you saved me money as that dress is on its way back to the store first thing morning. The heck with looking good. I am baking this tomorrow!

Anonymous said...

Those look so sinfully delicious! I want one...no, two of those and a tall glass of cold milk.


Ari (Baking and Books)

Julie said...

Leslie: Thanks, hope you like!
LaLaine: That is so funny. These are worth it, and you know what: they are not a diet disaster. I have this funny habit of totalling up the calories of things I baked, and if you cut these into 24 brownies, each one only has about 225 calories. NOT AT ALL unreasonable, so they can actually fit into a balanced diet.
Ari: I like them with a cup of peppermint tea:)

Meghan said...

The directions didn't say when to add the vanilla (or did I miss it?!?), so I just put it in at the same time as the Guinness. Hopefully that will work. They're in the oven right now and they sure smell good!!

Julie said...

Meghan: Thank you for catching that! You're right, and I fixed it in the post.

bobbinis-kitchen.com said...

Interesting combination the choclate with the beer.
Thank you for giving this idea.
Greetings from Germany!

Anonymous said...

just made these brownies with a secret ingredient....hehehehehe

Anonymous said...

These are really good! I don't cook or bake much, but I thought these looked really interesting and turned out great. A couple thoughts:
1) My wife does not like dark chocolate or Guinness, but really liked these. I substituted with Ghirardelli 62% cocoa dark bittersweet chocolate, thinking it might be more her taste, and it went over well.
2) I am thinking these would be really great with a good vanilla bean ice cream and a sprinkling of fresh raspberries.
3) As you mention, these have a very unique texture. They look like they'll be extremely heavy, but actually are fairly light (though they still have a dense texture). Hard to explain, but drew a bunch of compliments. I'm assuming this is a result of the beer.

Thanks for the recipe. It is one of the few things I've added to our recipe box :)

Julie said...

Anonymous: Thanks for coming back and summing up your experience with this recipe. I'm so glad you liked and got compliments all around!

Anonymous said...

Hey! Thanks, this was great. We added ground marihuana to the butter (maybe 1/8) and the beer really cut down on the bitterness of the buds. The best pot brownies ever!

Renula said...

I made brownie from Your recipe!It was gorgeous! Soft and silky! I substituted beer with cola ;) and added a tbs of milk! That's the best brownie I've ever made!

Anonymous said...

Great recipe, came out amazing, but have to be pedantic as an Irish person...its St Paddys not St Patties