If these brownies are not over baked the texture is fudge like. They are a great cure for a chocolate attack and take less than an hour to put together and bake. You can increase the intensity of the chocolate experience by adding dark chocolate chips or by slathering on a layer of chocolate fudge frosting.
According to the Food Timeline at http://www.foodtimeline.org/ recipes using chocolate as an ingredient began appearing in American cookbooks in the last part of the 1800s and increased in number in the 1900s. Those recipes included drinks, cakes of all sorts, frosting, cookies and candy. The love of chocolate has not decreased since.
The manufactures of chocolate aggressively marketed their mass-produced chocolate products to the American market in the 1800s. This resulted in chocolate products becoming cheaper and accessible to all, not only the rich. Another factor was the expense of sugar. It did not become affordable to the average household until the mid 1800s.
Many of the recipes containing chocolate were developed and published by the companies that produced the products. It is thought that the first chocolate cakes were developed by American bakers and the brownie is thought to be one the first types of chocolate cake recipes. It is said that the first brownie recipe was published in the 1906 edition of the “Boston Cooking-School Cook Book” by Fannie Farmer.
The following recipe is from the 1920s or 1930s. It is another one of my great aunt’s recipes. Serve the brownies hot from the oven either plain or with a scoop of ice cream and a drizzle of chocolate syrup.
- ¾ cup of all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon of baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon of salt
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup of white sugar
- 1/3 cup of cooking oil
- 2 squares of baking chocolate, melted
- 1 teaspoon of vanilla
- ½ cup of nuts, chopped
Heat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter an 8x8x2 inch baking pan or spray with pan release.
Melt the squares of chocolate over hot water or in the microwave.
Measure the flour, baking powder and salt into a mixing bowl. Whisk together or blend with a fork. Beat the eggs and sugar together in another mixing bowl. Add the oil, the melted chocolate and vanilla to the egg mixture. Beat well. Add the flour mixture and mix. Stir in the nuts.
Pour the batter into the baking pan. Bake for 35 minutes. I bake it only 20 to 25 minutes. The brownies should be just set and not over baked.
I use walnuts in the recipe.
Wrap any leftovers very tightly in aluminum foil or the brownies will become dry.
Cherry pie filling can be spooned over the top of the brownies and topped with whipped cream or another type of topping. Or use a larger pan and put the pie filling in the bottom and add the brownie batter on top for upside down brownies.
Peppermint flavoring can be used instead of vanilla. Do not use the nuts if you change the flavoring.