Monday, January 30, 2012

Fudgy Brownies with Homemade Caramel Sauce

These brownies are rich, super chocolaty, moist and delicious. They're pretty much the best brownie you'll ever taste.

Rich, chocolate brownies
Want to know what's even more delicious? Filling layers of brownie with vanilla ice cream and homemade caramel sauce. Maybe even add a little dollop of whipped cream on top. Or not. I found the idea to make Brownie and Salted Caramel with Ice Cream here on Yummy Mummy.

Brownie and Salted Caramel with Ice Cream
So I did. And this is how it turned out. Sort of.

It's kind of a funny story, I made the dessert to take to a dinner party on Saturday night. I don't know what I was thinking. Who takes an ice cream dessert to a dinner party? And who tries to do all of this in a couple hours after you've spent a good part of the afternoon tasting zinfandel wines?

I do.

I forged ahead completely oblivious to the fact that there was no way the ice cream would refreeze in an hour or so.

I made the brownies. They came out perfect. I started to make the caramel sauce and immediately burned the sugar because I was tweeting. So I started over and made perfect caramel sauce. I let the sauce cool, and let the brownies cool before I cut two 6" square of brownies and started my assembly which is a layer of brownie, ice cream, and caramel sauce topped with another brownie. All done. It looked great.

Then Don came in the kitchen. "Add another layer. Then it will be really good." he said.

Sheesh. I was done. 

So I cut another 6" square and made another layer, 'cuz that's what I do.

I stuck it in the freezer for an hour and a half. Took Elli to a slumber party and got myself ready for dinner.

30 minutes before we were supposed to leave I opened the freezer to check on my masterpiece. Well, apparently MY refrigerator is not so super duper because and this is what I found.

The freezer. Sad face.
Clearly I do not have a blast chiller like on Iron Chef.
All of the ice cream and caramel melted out of the brownie, filled the Nambe plate and overflowed all over the freezer. It was like a waterfall of caramel ice cream.

SIGH.........followed by some not so nice 4-letter words.

I couldn't resist getting a little taste so I grabbed a spoon and it was awesome, but not frozen, and certainly not guest presentable. Plus it would never make it to our friends house in the car. No way.

I shut the freezer and jumped to plan B. I made some whipped cream, cut up the leftover brownies, packed up the caramel sauce, and planned to stop at Safeway for ice cream on our way. We could make little brownie sundaes instead. They would never know. Of course this isn't really true because I'm a blabber mouth and told them what happened within 30 seconds of arriving.

The lesson here, is to freeze the brownies BEFORE you spread the ice cream. I think that will help it from melting everywhere. I'll definitely try it again - because it tastes awesome.

On Sunday I cut it into 1" slices for us to grab and eat. We now have a huge container of Brownie-Ice Cream Bars.

Don has proclaimed "the carmel and ice cream infused brownies are scrumpdillyicious. And they're really NOT going to help me lose weight."

Oooops. Sorry honey.

Brownies make doing homework more fun.
Brownies
(adapted from Martha Stewart)


3 sticks unsalted butter
1 pound good bittersweet chocolate (1 1/2 bags chips)
3 1/2 cups granulated sugar
6 large eggs
1 T pure vanilla extract or vanilla paste
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
Unsweetened cocoa powder for dusting, optional

1. Adjust the oven rack to the middle position. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Melt the chocolate and butter in a stainless-steel mixing bowl set over a pot of gently simmering water.
3. In the bowl of an electric mixer beat the sugar, eggs, vanilla, and salt on medium-high until thick and mousse-like, about 3-5 minutes.
4. Add the flour in 3 batches, mixing on low until combined.
5. Gently, fold in the melted chocolate with a spatula or wooden spoon.
6. Line a 11 x 17 jelly-roll pan with parchment paper. Lightly coat the pan with melted butter.
7. Spread to an even thickness.
8. Bake for 40 minutes, until firm to the touch.
9. Let cool. Slice into 3 x 4 inch squares

Homemade Caramel Sauce

Caramel Sauce
(adapted from Simply Recipes)

1 cup of sugar
6 Tbsp butter
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
Sea Salt Grinder

Tips from Elise at Simply Recipes:
Before you begin, make sure you have everything ready to go - place the cream and the butter next to the pan. Making caramel is a fast process that cannot wait for hunting around for ingredients. If you don't work fast, the sugar will burn. Safety first - make sure there are no children under foot and you may want to wear oven mitts; the caramelized sugar will be much hotter than boiling water.

1. Heat sugar on moderately high heat in a heavy-bottomed 2-quart or 3-quart saucepan. As the sugar begins to melt, stir vigorously with a whisk or wooden spoon. As soon as the sugar comes to a boil, stop stirring. You can swirl the pan a bit if you want, from this point on. It can burn quickly. Do not leave the pan while the sugar is melting.
2.  As soon as all of the sugar crystals have melted (the liquid sugar should be dark amber in color), immediately add the butter to the pan. Whisk until the butter has melted.
3. Once the butter has melted, take the pan off the heat. Slowly add the cream to the pan and continue to whisk to incorporate. When you add the butter and the cream, the mixture will foam up considerably.
4. Whisk until caramel sauce is smooth.
Add a few grinds of sea salt and stir.  Let cool in the pan for a couple minutes. Pour into a glass mason jar and let cool to room temperature. 
5. The caramel sauce will thicken as it cools.
6. Store in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. Warm before serving.

3 comments:

  1. The brownies look awesome! Love that you have TJ's wheat free waffles in your freezer.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I made the mistake of telling Lili about these - now I have to make them!

    ReplyDelete
  3. YUMMY! I need these now. Wanna come over & make them for me?

    ReplyDelete

Thanks for your feedback!

~Kris

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