Source from Bon Appetite
When it comes to comfort food and our favorite desserts, brownies rankway up there. They’re rich, decadent, sweet, and come with the added bonus of nostalgia: Who doesn’t have fond memories of an after-school brownie and a tall, icy glass of milk? But these chocolatey treats are trickier to nail than they seem—there are a good many mistakes to be made along the way, from using the wrong recipe to digging in too soon. Never botch your brownies again with these essential tips from the Bon Appétit test kitchen.
Since we’re talking chocolate, it’s time to lose the miniature chips: They contain stabilizers, Saffitz explains, which don’t melt well, and also add things into your batter that just don’t need to be there. Instead, use bar chocolate and chop it into big chunks; it’ll melt slowly, making rich, ultra-chocolatey brownies. Senior food editor Dawn Perry likes to use a mix of dark chocolate (around 72%) and semisweet.
We’ve all seen brownies with intricate flavor combinations, but honestly, are you ever really craving a chocolate-chipotle-raspberry-lime brownie? Pick one “extra” flavor or add-in, like chocolate, cream cheese, or nuts, and stick with it. The point here, explains Saffitz, is to enhance the chocolate’s flavor—not mask it. That said, according to Perry, “No one is going to mind if you fold in some Reese’s peanut butter cups.”
Underbaking makes for gooey, melty brownies, right? Wrong! Underbaking your pan of brownies means you’ll be eating, well, underbaked brownies. Always follow your recipe’s baking time (toothpick test doesn’t work here!) and bake your brownies until they’re done. The right texture is all in the right recipe; it’s not about the cooking time.
To make sure you don’t overbake your brownies, it’s worthwhile investing in a clear Pyrex pan—that way, you can keep an eye on how things are looking. What size and shape should you use? The test kitchen overwhelmingly recommends an 8X8 straight-sided square pan. It’s all about the crispy corners. Besides, says Perry, “There is just something magical about that square pan of brownies.”