Two entirely different things inspired this post. First, there was the February 2011 issue of Bon Appetit. If you haven’t seen the cover of said magazine, it was a siren calling, “Look at these delicious cocoa-walnut brownies, don’t you want them right now?” To use a Bourdain-ism: Total food porn.
Then there was January 23rd. It was the day that my beloved Pittsburgh Steelers valiantly defeated the New York Jets to secure their spot in Super Bowl XLV. I can’t wait for the big game this weekend vs. Green Bay. It has potential to be one of the best ever: Two teams so well-matched that it’s the lowest Super Bowl point spread in 27 years.
Having already made and devoured Bon Appetit’s dark and decadent goodies last week, I decided to switch it up this week and go for the gold. This one’s for you, Steelers. Good luck in the big game!
Black and Goldies
These are a one pot wonder, so make sure that your saucepan is big enough to accommodate all of the ingredients. I used a 4qt. to account for whisking space.
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup light or golden brown sugar, packed
8 tablespoons (4 oz.) unsalted butter
½ tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. coconut flavoring (optional, but soooo good)
¼ tsp. salt
2 oz. dark chocolate, roughly chopped
1 cup pecans, toasted and chopped
Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Line an 8×8 in. pan with parchment or buttered foil.
To toast the pecans, spread them out on a sheet pan and bake for about 8-10 minutes or until lightly fragrant.
Cut the butter into 1 in. pieces and melt in a saucepan over medium heat. Stirring gently, allow it to cook for about 5 minutes or until the foaming subsides and the butter browns just lightly.
Take the pan off of the heat and beat in the brown sugar until the mixture is smooth and shiny.
Beat in the egg and extracts until thoroughly combined.
Slowly beat in the flour and salt until no dry spots remain and then add the pecans and dark chocolate pieces.
Spread the batter in the prepared pan and bake for 25 minutes or until a toothpick poked into the center comes out mostly clean (a crumb or two is fine). The top of the blondies should look shiny and set. This may take up to ten minutes longer depending on your oven, but start checking for doneness at 25 minutes.
Here’s the hard part: Wait. Let them cool in the pan on a wire rack for an hour and a half and then gently lift the whole slab out of the pan (this is where your foil/parchment is so handy). Let them cool out of the pan for an hour more and then cut into squares. Yield: 16 blondies.
Cook’s note: There is no leavening agent in this recipe, so these will be more fudgy and less cakey than some brownie/blondie recipes. The edges (especially if you use buttered foil) are lightly crispy. Personally, I love a gooey cookie so I have no complaints.
Enjoy the treats and GO STEELERS!
Ciao for now,