Monday, April 14, 2008

Fudgey Brownies

When I was a child, my Mom cooked and baked alot, and often while I was in the kitchen under foot. So it was that I started making things on my own at a young age. The fudgey brownie recipe had to be printed because I couldn't read cursive yet and it was baked over and over - and still is! I've tried to include all instructions necessary for a beginner.

3/4 cup cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup boiling water
2 cups white granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 cup + 1/3 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon iodized salt

Large and medium mixing bowls
Mixing spoon
Measuring cups for dry ingredients and liquids
Measuring spoons
13 x 9 inch baking pan (if you don't have a baking pan, get the 9 X 12 Glad Ovenware)
Non-stick cooking spray
Oven mitts
Trivet or pot holder

Wash your hands before beginning. Set out all the ingredients and kitchen tools on the area where you will be working. Put on an apron. Over the sink, lightly spray the baking pan with non-stick cooking spray. Check to make sure that the oven is empty. Position the rack in the lower third of the oven. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Using a mixing spoon, stir cocoa powder and baking soda in the large mixing bowl. Blend in 1/3 cup vegetable oil. Add boiling water (measure accurately); stir until thick and colour is uniform. Stir in sugar, eggs, and remaining 1/3 cup vegetable oil. Stir until smooth.

In a medium bowl, mix flour and salt. Gradually add to the cocoa mixture and stir until combined. Add vanilla extract. Pour the brownie batter into the lightly greased pan. Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 35 to 40 minutes.

Using oven mitts, remove the brownies from the oven and set on a trivet or pot holder. Using a toothpick, insert into the center of the brownies to determine if it is done baking. If the toothpick has uncooked batter on it, return the pan to the oven for 3-5 minutes. Repeat until toothpick emerges clean. If the toothpick emerges clean, the brownies are done.

Turn off the oven. Wash the dishes and clean the prep area.

When the brownies are cool, cut into squares in the pan and serve. To store, use an airtight container.

Notes for a beginner:
- Hershey's cocoa powder works well.
- Canola oil, safflower oil, olive oil, or peanut oil can be used for vegetable oil.
- Water can be boiled in a kettle, in the microwave, or on the stove. Do not just use how water from the faucet, it is not hot enough.
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