Tuesdays with Dorie – French Chocolate Brownies

Dorie, Dorie, Dorie… what’s with all the raisins?!

This week’s Tuesdays with Dorie recipe was chosen by Di of Di’s Kitchen Notebook. Di chose Dorie’s French Chocolate Brownies which is a pretty typical brownie recipe except it includes a bit of cinnamon and some rum soaked raisins.

Cinnamon I can do. Infact, I doubled the amount it called for. But the raisins… I even bought raisins this time around thinking I could do it. I couldn’t. So I grabbed some dried cranberries. And I couldn’t do that either. I just couldn’t imagine what dried fruit would be like in a brownie. And believe me, I’m not willing to take chances with brownies. I love them way too much.

Overall, I thought these were pretty boring. They weren’t cakey and they weren’t fudgy. They were just brownies. I thought the extra cinnamon I added made them a little better but the husband couldn’t tell there was any cinnamon at all. I’m very sad to report that this is the first time a plate of brownies has lasted longer than 24 hours in my house.

Make sure you check out the rest of the blogroll!

French Chocolate Brownies
from: Baking: From My Home to Yours

1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon cinnamon (optional)
1/3 cup raisins, dark or golden
1 1/2 tablespoons water
1 1/2 tablespoons dark rum
6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
1 1/2 sticks (12 tablespoons; 6 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature and cut into 12 pieces
3 large eggs, at room temperature
1 cup sugar

Getting ready: Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 300°F. Line an 8-inch square baking pan with foil, butter the foil, place the pan on a baking sheet, and set aside.

Whisk together the flour, salt and cinnamon, if you’re using it.

Put the raisins in a small saucepan with the water, bring to a boil over medium heat and cook until the water almost evaporates. Add the rum, let it warm for about 30 seconds, turn off the heat, stand back and ignite the rum. Allow the flames to die down, and set the raisins aside until needed.

Put the chocolate in a heatproof bowl and set the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water. Slowly and gently melt the chocolate, stirring occasionally. Remove the bowl from the saucepan and add the butter, stirring so that it melts. It’s important that the chocolate and butter not get very hot. However, if the butter is not melting, you can put the bowl back over the still-hot water for a minute. If you’ve got a couple of little bits of unmelted butter, leave them—it’s better to have a few bits than to overheat the whole. Set the chocolate aside for the moment.

Working with a stand mixer with the whisk attachment, or with a hand mixer in a large bowl, beat the eggs and sugar until they are thick and pale, about 2 minutes. Lower the mixer speed and pour in the chocolate-butter, mixing only until it is incorporated—you’ll have a thick, creamy batter. Add the dry ingredients and mix at low speed for about 30 seconds—the dry ingredients won’t be completely incorporated and that’s fine. Finish folding in the dry ingredients by hand with a rubber spatula, then fold in the raisins along with any liquid remaining in the pan.

Scrape the batter into the pan and bake 50 to 60 minutes, or until the top is dry and crackled and a knife inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Transfer the pan to a rack and allow the brownies to cool to warm or room temperature.

Carefully lift the brownies out of the pan, using the foil edges as handles, and transfer to a cutting board. With a long-bladed knife, cut the brownies into 16 squares, each roughly 2 inches on a side, taking care not to cut through the foil.

Serving: The brownies are good just warm or at room temperature; they’re even fine cold. I like these with a little something on top or alongside—good go-alongs are whipped crème fraiche or whipped cream, ice cream or chocolate sauce or even all three!

Storing: Wrapped well, these can be kept at room temperature for up to 3 days or frozen for up to 2 months.

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19 Responses to “Tuesdays with Dorie – French Chocolate Brownies”

  1. steph (whisk/spoon) Says:

    oh that’s too bad. i agree, she throws raisins (which i can’t stand) into way too many things…she should extract those recipes and make a separate “cooking with raisins” book!

  2. rainbowbrown Says:

    What a bummer this one didn’t really do it for you. Well, there’s always next week! Looking good in the photo, though. :)

  3. kdgreen Says:

    I wasn’t sure about the raisins but I tried them and thought they worked. Too bad it didn’t stand out for you.

  4. kim Says:

    sorry you were disappointed :( i didn’t love them either, but i actually thought the raisins worked to give it a bit of moisture & texture.

  5. Sarah Says:

    Sorry they weren’t a wow for you…I am not a raisin person either!

  6. Kelly Says:

    You don’t even know how happy I am to hear that you didn’t like these! The picture looks great and I LOVE brownies….this recipe might have made me run straight for the kitchen and my diet would have got right out the window!

  7. LyB Says:

    The raisins really gave these brownies that extra oomph. Too bad they didn’t wow you, maybe next week’s recipe will! :)

  8. April Says:

    Sorry they weren’t a winner in your house, but they still look like a great tasting brownie!

  9. CB Says:

    Another raisin hater here. Bummer it wasn’t a fav but the picture all thick and fudgey! YUM!
    Clara @ I♥food4thought

  10. Jayne Says:

    The photo looks great – and I actually liked the texture of these – but I wish I’d left the raisins out. They just seem strange in a brownie.

  11. Mari Says:

    I’ve been converted! I was pleasantly surprised how good these were, flambéd raisins and all!

  12. Christine Says:

    Oh sorry to hear that! Your brownies look great! I am not a big raisin fan but changed my mind after trying a brownie!

  13. Megan Says:

    Yeah, raisins aren’t a hit at my house either – my husband calls them dead flies. Brownies weren’t a huge hit either. Hmmm. Glad I wasn’t the only one that thought so.

  14. Tammy Says:

    I left the raisins out too and I thought they were nice but not great

  15. Carol Peterman Says:

    The raisins were what made these brownies work. Without them I can imagine they would be a bit dull.

  16. Mara Says:

    awww poor sad brownies!! send them over to our house…hehee. i put raspberries and chambord in ours and they were a hit! yours look pretty :)

  17. doughmesstic Says:

    So glad I dropped by your blog…not for the brownies, but the lemon bars!! I have a recipe for them too, but I want to try yours now! great posting, and I can’t wait to see what you do with next weeks tart!

  18. Dolores Says:

    Dorie does seem to have an obsession with raisins that runs in inverse proportion to my distaste for them in baked goods. I’m glad there are others like me out there. :)

  19. Shari Says:

    I love raisins, so I didn’t mind. Too bad you didn’t like them.
    Shari@Whisk: a food blog

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