Sourdough Surprises May 2013
Sourdough and Brownies are not a typical twosome, or so I thought. Now it appears that the food blogosphere is full of recipes pairing two of my favorite ingredients. You can even find a page of sourdough brownies on Pinterest, who knew? Interesting, unusual, but so what? The WHAT is this month's cooking challenge at SourdoughSurprises featuring... you guessed it, sourdough and brownies. I'm in! What could be better than dark chocolate brownies? maybe dark chocolate brownies with a Mexican twist. Mexican chocolate drinks blend unsweetened chocolate with a hint of cinnamon and a bite of chile heat, so why not add those flavors to chocolate brownies?
|Photo: brownie ingredients - note the blue/green shells on the Polish chicken eggs|
|Photo: melted chocolate and butter wait for the remaining ingredients|
|Photo: corners pull away from the pan when brownies are fully baked|
Mexican Chocolate Sourdough Brownies
6 oz dark bittersweet chocolate (60%), broken into pieces
1 stick unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ancho chile
1/2 teaspoon ground chipotle chile
1 egg, beaten
1 egg white
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1/2 cup sourdough starter, well-fed and rested
1/4 cup caramel bits or chopped nuts (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 325 F. (My oven runs cool so I used 350 F)
- Line an 8x8 baking dish with foil and butter the foil for easy removal of the brownie square.
- Place the chocolate and butter in a 4-cup microwave safe measuring cup. Melt in successive 30-second bursts, stirring after each interval. Be careful not to overheat and burn the chocolate. (I don't know what that does, but several recipes include that warning. I was careful to heat only until the chocolate lumps disappeared)
- Add the sugar, salt, vanilla and ancho and chipotle chile powders to the mix and stir briefly to incorporate.
- Add the egg and egg white and whisk to combine.
- Sift the cocoa powder into the mix and stir, not whisk, to combine. (Again, the warnings caution against whisking. This might change the texture of the brownie and not in a good way)
- Add the sourdough starter and stir in gently.
- Spread half of the batter evenly in the prepared pan. Scatter half of the caramel bits or nuts (if using) across the surface. Add the remaining batter and top with the remaining caramel or nuts. Bake in the preheated oven for 40 minutes, rotating pan half way through. Test in the center with a toothpick; it should come out clean or with very few crumbs. The corners of the brownie will also have pulled away from the pan.
- Cool for 20 minutes, then use the overhanging foil edges to lift to a baking rack. Cool completely before cutting into squares.