This is one of my most requested recipes and was featured on the opening menu at Soho's. Serve with a scoop of Zabaione Gelato from Ellen's Homemade Ice Cream. Makes 1 dozen large brownies.
1 1/2 cups unbleached flour (see note)
1 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt (less if using salted butter)
6 ounces (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup light brown sugar
2 tablespoons instant coffee powder dissolved in 2 teaspoons hot water (I use Maxwell House; for decaf, use Sanka)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup chocolate chips (I like Ghirardelli)
HEAT oven to 325°. Butter a 13- by 9- by 2-inch baking pan (I use a metal pan, and I line it with foil to make cutting easier -- but it's not necessary. You can also spray with Baker's Joy).
COMBINE the flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl.
CREAM the butter in the large bowl of an electric mixer, mixing at medium speed for 15 seconds. Add the sugar and brown sugar and beat until the butter and sugars are creamed thoroughly, about 1 minute. Decrease the speed to low.
ADD the eggs, dissolved espresso and vanilla, mixing just until the eggs are incorporated. The mixture will look curdled. Stop the mixer and scrape the sides of the bowl once during this mixing.
ADD the flour mixture slowly and mix just until the flour is incorporated and the mixture is smooth. Mix in the chocolate chips.
SPREAD the batter evenly in the prepared pan.
BAKE until a toothpick inserted in the center no longer has liquid clinging to it, but the brownies still feel soft, 28 to 30 minutes.
COOL completely on a rack, then cut into 12 squares (I cut each square into triangles).
Note: It is very important to use unbleached flour! It has a higher protein content than all-purpose flour and is the best flour for this recipe. The mixing times are also important -- I have overmixed the batter, and it doesn't turn out well.
April Hamilton has always said, "Cooking is fun!" She shares her easy, practical recipes for delicious food through her cooking classes for kids and families. April's husband and three daughters help with testing and tasting in their Charleston kitchen. April would love to hear from you: Email aprilskitchencoun...@gmail.com.