Skip to main content

Not-Quite-There-Yet Hazelnut-Chocolate Brownies

Wait, don't go! The brownies were good, but just that the intensity of the hazelnut flavour did not come out as strongly as I had intended. So it tasted much like a good ole' regular brownie, with a fresh dimension added by the hazelnuts. But then if I want a good ole' regular brownie, I would definitely use walnuts and add chocolate chips.

The combination of hazelnut and chocolate, commonly associated with Nutella, has never failed to amaze me. It is the lethal combination, in my opinion, and I wanted to use it to create a brownie, which is a much loved dessert by many, just a bit different. So, in order to get there, I decided to tweak a tried-and-tested fudgy brownie recipe, but because this is going to be the start of a long chain of experiments, I halved the original recipe.

The recipe is easy to follow. I prepared the hazelnuts by tossing them in the toaster. I truely believe both the flavour and intensity of nuts are both greatly elevated through the heating process. Then I rubbed the skins off and with a mortar and pestle, pound them lightly to break them up. The aroma was amazing; I had to stop myself from eating them. After popping the pan into the oven, I went off to work so just keep in mind the brownie cooled in the oven, rather than on a rack.

Back from work, the brownie felt a little too hard in the pan. Luckily, it was still moist and fudgy in the inside, just as I like it, while still maintaining a crusty surface. I suppose if I had let it cool on a rack, the crust would have been more crispy and lighter. Anyway, I served the brownies slightly warmed up in a microwave, accompanied with a many generous scoops of french vanilla ice cream. I thought the brownie would be a tad too sweet but it turned out just nice.

In future, I shall try upping the hazelnut-chocolate spread, as well as incorporate some ground hazelnut into the mixture to elevate the hazelnut intensity.

SE's Fudgy "Hazelnut"-Chocolate Brownies

- 2 ounces unsweetened chocolate squares
- 2 ounces chocolate-hazelnut spread
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- pinch of salt
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1 large egg
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour, sifted
- 1/4 cup chopped hazelnuts, toasted

Preheat oven to 160C/325F. Butter or line with parchment paper an 8"x4" loaf pan (or 8" square cake pan, if doubling recipe) and set aside.

Heat the unsweetened chocolate, hazelnut chocolate spread and butter in the top of a 2 1/2 to 3-quart double boiler or water bath. Stir occasionally until melted. If necessary, whisk to smooth. Remove from heat, stir in the salt, vanilla, and sugar. Add the eggs one at a time, stirring after each addition until incorporated.

Add the flour and stir briskly for about a minute until the mixture is smooth and shiny and comes away from the side of the pot. Stir in the nuts. Turn the mixture into the pan and smooth the top.

Bake for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted gently into the center comes out moist, but free of batter.

Remove from the oven. Cool on a rack. Serve warm with good ice cream and good company.

Makes eight 2-inch brownies or four real-decent-sized brownies.


mishmash123 said…
hi there, could u please upload your "tried-and-tested fudgy brownie recipe"? I've been looking for a good brownie recipe for ages! thanks! :)

Popular posts from this blog

Towards Weaning.

Since my last post, I have tried to implement a few changes to make things better.  For one, I have decided to stop feeling so stressed about pumping enough milk for A.  Fortunately or unfortunately depending on how you look at it, after 9 months of pumping without mastitis (blocked ducts yes, mastitis no), I suffered not 1 but 2 episodes of mastitis over 2 consecutive weeks, right boob then left. The supply tanked after the first episode and I decided to take the opportunity to slow things down and gradually wean.  Even though the mental determination was there, it was still affecting me psychologically. I mean, after going through the first few months of suffering through the 3-hourly pumping schedule and building up a decent supply, and then reaching a nice maintenance mode where pumping became easier and a way of life for me, it was hard to let go.

Nonetheless, after the second round, and the supply continued to tank, I thought enough is enough.  Final straw was when the Spectra …

The Wedding Gowns

The Man and I tied the knot on 1.3.14, a popular date because of the homonym when read in Chinese: 一生一世, which literally means, a lifetime, if I am not wrong. Anyway, just for the record, we didn't select the date because of that reason, but on hindsight, it made a very nice coincidence and we won't easily forget our wedding anniversary I suppose. When we got engaged, we went researching for the wedding banquet venue right away (more on that later), and then followed by the wedding gown.  After consulting a few recent brides,  unsolicited input from others, and research on bridal forums, I decided I would like to go ala carte. I also eliminated the Tanjong Pagar bridal studios because I admit I am biased and my mind conjures up an imagery of a typical Tanjong Pagar bride that is wearing a tiara, white gloves, a big poofy ballgown and lots of bling.  I shudder uncontrollably at that thought before and even now that the wedding is over.
Eventually, I visited the following few and…

How do you juggle it all :( ?

I just feel that I don't have enough time - for the husband and  much less for myself!

During the workday, I make sure I try to go home on time so I could spend a couple of hours with A, and put him to bed. Then it's time to have my last pump at about 9pm before I just want to  zone out and crash.  The boy wakes up at least 3 times ever since his last leap when he learnt how to stand. Additionally, he fell really ill for the first time (i.e. antibiotics).  Prior to that, he cries 1-2 times but easily soothed with pacifier or with some milk. Because of these frequent interrupted sleep, the man and I took turns to fall ill as well, and it is difficult to recover. I still have the head colds and occasionally coughing spells.

On weekends, our schedule revolves around family events, and then I try to plan so that A can try to get a nap or 2 as well as to plan our routes throughout the day so I would end up somewhere comfortable to pump when I needed to.  Often the nap part fails,…