I was on a chocolate high after eating one but, I couldn't get enough of it. I gobbled one as soon as it was out of the oven and inhaled another after taking photos. Hey, I can't let the poor brownie I cut into for pictures just rot away, can I?
These tasted even more delicious after a baking disaster. I was down in the dumps after a failed experiment with cupcakes. Cupcakes! I know. Who can go wrong with cupcakes? I was heartbroken that the very love of my life had let me down. Truth is, I was the one that screwed up. I tried playing around with flavors and it bit me in the rear end.
Lessons learned: 1) never EVER make frosting with ricotta cheese (I don't know what possessed me) 2) never try to right the mistake of using ricotta, with your aspirations of mixing unique flavors a la Cupcake Wars and 3) when all else fails, MAKE BROWNIES! What's even better? Make them like cupcakes if you're in love with cupcakes.
Rocky Mountain Brownie Cups (adapted from Ina Garten's Outrageous Brownies)
(Note: I made only a quarter of the original quantity in Ina's recipe and got 12 brownie cupcakes - regular sized not the mini ones)
Ingredients and instructions:
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter
- 4 ounces plus 3 ounces bittersweet chocolate chips
- 1 1/2 ounces unsweetened chocolate
- 2 eggs
- 1 1/2 tablespoons instant coffee granules
- 1/2 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons Kahlua
- 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
- 1/4 tablespoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- A handful of pecans (I went easy on the quantity since I don't like a lot of nuts in my cakes/brownies)
For the topping:
- 1 cup mini marshmallows
- 1/4 cup broken pretzel pieces
- 1/4 cup sweetened shredded coconut
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Place cupcake liners in your cupcake pan.
Melt together the butter, 1 pound of chocolate chips, and the unsweetened chocolate in a medium bowl over simmering water. Allow to cool slightly. In a large bowl, stir (do not beat - mine got a bit fluffy because I mixed mine with an excited hand) together the eggs, coffee granules, vanilla, and sugar. Stir the warm chocolate mixture into the egg mixture and allow to cool to room temperature.
In a medium bowl, sift together 1 cup of flour, the baking powder, and salt. Add to the cooled chocolate mixture. Add the Kahlua and mix gently. Toss the walnuts and 12 ounces of chocolate chips in a medium bowl with 1/4 cup of flour, then add them to the chocolate batter. Pour into your cupcake moulds.
Bake for 12-15 minutes (bake for 20 minutes if you're using a sheet pan like regular brownies), then rap the cupcake tray against the oven shelf to force the air to escape from between the pan and the brownie dough. You know it's done if a toothpick comes out clean. Do not overbake!
Once your brownie cupcakes are out of the oven, change the setting to broil, preferably at low.
Mix together your topping ingredients and sprinkle evenly over all the cupcakes. Put it back in the oven for a minute or two till the marshmallows turn light brown. Watch it carefully because the marshmallows burn in a second. Mine nearly did in less than a minute when I set the broiler at high.