25 August 2013

Blonde Brownies or Brown Blondies?

These are by no means delicate or beautiful. They don't photograph tidily, and you can't eat them neatly. 
You can however eat them slowly, savoring the chewy, dense texture, the intense chocolate flavour of the brownie top, the tangy raspberries hidden in the middle, and the caramelly flavour of the blondie bottom. You can let the white chocolate chunks slowly melt in your mouth...or you can shovel three down in a matter of minutes. Whatever floats your boat.

These started off as a rather simple but still pleasantly tasty treat - white chocolate and raspberry blondies. We had a whole box of raspberries sitting in the fridge that were just too soft to eat on their own, or as more often occurs in my house, at the side of chocolate cake. So baking with raspberries was in order. When I'd whipped up the blondie batter and studded it with the bright red berries, the offering looked a little shallow in the tin and just a bit underwhelming. 

My brain set to work and my first thought was, well double the blondie recipe and have a secret raspberry layer in the middle. That was all well and good until I realised I didn't have enough brown sugar. Back to the drawing board. Suddenly I was hit with a wave of inspiration and thought to myself "mwhahaha I'm an evil baking genius" (just a little insight of what goes on in my head) - what would work just as well, if not better, than blondies? Brownies! And so my somewhat traditional treat turned into something new, layered and delightful. Give it a go, you'll love them.

Blondie Layer:
115g butter, melted
100g brown sugar
100g caster sugar
1 egg
1tsp vanilla extract
125g plain flour
1tsp baking powder
100g white chocolate, chunked

Preheat the oven to fan 160.
Beat together the melted butter and two sugars in a large mixing bowl until all combined and smooth. Crack in the egg and splosh in the vanilla and mix again. Carefully fold in the flour and baking powder until you have an even batter. Mix in the white chocolate chunks and pour into a greased 9x9 inch pan.

Dot raspberries all over the top of the blondie layer until it is mostly covered and you just see peeks of blondie batter coming through (I used roughly 175g raspberries).

Brownie Layer:
100g dark chocolate
100g butter
45g plain flour
20g cocoa powder
2 eggs
140g caster sugar
100g white chocolate, chunked

Melt the chocolate and butter together in a bain marie.
Whilst the chocolate is melting, whisk the eggs and sugar together with an electric whisk until doubled in volume and moussey. When the beaters are lifted they should leave a small trail that sits on the top of the mixture for a few seconds. 
Fold the melted chocolate and butter into the moussey egg-sugar mixture, using either a spatula or a metal spoon, and going gently so you don't knock all the air out that was just whipped in.
Sift in the flour and cocoa powder, and again fold gently.
Add the white chocolate chunks then pour over the raspberry-studded blondie batter.
Bake for about 40 minutes, until there is a slightly crisp top to the brownies but a slight wobble underneath. You might need to cover the top with foil after about 20 minutes to avoid the top burning, so keep an eye on them. Leave to cool in the tin then slice in 16 pieces.

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