Brownies are probably one of my greatest weaknesses. When I’m hungry, I’m craving brownies 90% of the time. There are so many species to the brownie genus: cakey, chewy, fudgy, frosted, plain, nutty, etc. And to me, there is no single superior brownie species – more brownie types simply equals more ways of ensuring an equal amount of happiness. So here’s yet another brownie recipe, because the more the merrier!
There was fresh rosemary to spare growing on our porch in the summer, so herby brownies came to mind. I decided I’d try Top with Cinnamon’s technique of using an herb-infused browned butter – mainly because I didn’t like the idea of chopped up bits of rosemary in my brownie. I wasn’t sure how strong the flavour would be by only infusing the butter, but huzzah! the rosemary flavour really comes through in the end. Then, top it off with a sprinkle of sea salt because salty chocolate is delicious (and the recipe sounds better this way lol).
The only time I’d reject a brownie (aside from it being overbaked – how dare you) is if it’s too sweet to taste any chocolate flavour. If I only wanted sweetness I’d eat candy, please. Though I may not be a chocolate expert, I really like baking with Hershey’s dark cocoa. I’ve yet to come across a cocoa powder that gives such a rich colour and flavour on a “poor college student” budget. Otherwise, use whatever tickles your fancy. And together, let us make the world a better place, one brownie at a time.
5 ½ oz (or 11 tablespoons) butter
1 sprig of rosemary
¾ or 1 cup sugar (I add less when I’m mixing in chocolate as well)
2 eggs, cold
½ tsp vanilla extract
½ cup all-purpose flour
1 tbsp corn starch
¾ cup dark cocoa powder
1/8 tsp baking soda
½ cup bittersweet chocolate, chopped (optional)
Coarse sea salt
Preheat oven to 325°F. Line an 8 inch square baking pan with parchment paper.
In a small pot, heat up the butter at medium heat until just melted. Run your fingers down the stem of the rosemary to remove all the leaves, adding them into the pot. Continue heating up the butter and rosemary, swirling the pot occasionally, until the butter is frothy and slightly brown with a nutty smell. Strain the rosemary from the melted butter into a small bowl and let cool slightly for 5 minutes.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, corn starch, cocoa powder, and baking soda. In another bowl with a hand/stand mixer, pour in the cooled (but still liquid) butter. Mix in the sugar and vanilla. Add the eggs one at a time and whisk at a higher speed until incorporated. Lower the speed, and slowly pour in the dry ingredients, whisking just until there are no more lumps. Stir in the chopped chocolate with a spatula and pour into the prepared pan and smooth the surface. Bake for 20-25 minutes until a toothpick inserted comes out with moist crumbs (do not overbake!). Sprinkle on the sea salt after it has cooled slightly so it remains more visible. Cool completely on a wire rack before cutting.