During my time in Australia, I didn’t have access to a real kitchen. Sure, there was a “common kitchen” on each floor, but it consisted of several scratched and dirty stainless steel tables, an industrial-size sink, and an open oven that offered no opportunity for even the simplest batch of cookies — it broiled at best. So I settled for trying out all the local bakeries, and lived vicariously through all of my favorite blogs and occasional stories of fresh-baked goodies at home. It was hard though – easily the hardest (and yet the greatest) 3.5 months of my life in more ways than one. Getting back in the kitchen was such a good feeling, and my passion has only continued to grow since.
One of the things I remember most from my Australia-to-home communications was a day when AW told me he’d made brownies. Usually I’m the baker in our relationship, and he takes care of the cooking and cocktails. But the one-bowl brownies apparently caught his eye, and I was so incredibly jealous I’m sure he felt it through the phone.
Luscious chocolate, smooth and creamy mascarpone cheese, and silky ganache, all baked together to create simple perfection. I dreamt about those brownies for days, and the curiosity never quite faded, because a few days ago I remembered those very brownies, and set out to try the recipe for myself. So in AW’s kitchen, under his watchful eye, I recreated the one-bowl marscarpone brownies (from The Kitchn). They are incredible.
It’s hard to describe the taste and texture of these brownies. I would say they’re fudgy, but I don’t really like fudge and I still love these. I’d say they’re light, but I don’t like cakey brownies either. So how do I convey to you the magic that these possess? It’s kind of like eating a dense chocolate souffle — their texture is light and airy, but the flavors are deep and delicious. They satisfy every feeling, and shower your mouth with a tantalizing array of sensations. They are smooth and creamy and absolutely perfect. Plus, they’re just about the simplest things to make. YUM!
I know I provided the link above, but I’m including the recipe here, because these brownies are so good you need to try them now!
1 cup unsalted butter
3 ounces best-quality semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup cocoa powder (sifted)
1/2 cup mascarpone cheese
3 large eggs, at room-temperature
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 ounces best-quality semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
6 tablespoons whipping cream
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
Preheat oven to 325F and grease or parchment paper a 8×8 pan. Set aside.
In glass mixing bowl melt butter in microwave on full power. Stir in chocolate and mix until combined (a few extra seconds in the microwave may be needed). Note: This may be done over a double boiler, but we’ve never seen why you should bother with the hassle!
Add sugar to chocolate/butter mixture until combined. Heat for an additional 30 seconds on high, remove and stir until it looks shiny. It will still look a bit grainy.
Add marscapone, vanilla, eggs and mixing until smooth.
Sift flour, salt and cocoa into mixture with a sieve and stir just until combined, making sure to scrape all sides of the bowl. (Mixture will be rather light in texture, instead of dense and heavy like many brownie batters)
Pour batter into prepared pan and smooth top to ensure even baking. Bake for 40-50 minutes (ours is usually done around 47 minutes) until tester comes out clean. Use the flat end of a potato masher to lightly tamp down the surface of the brownies while they are still warm. Do not squish, merely flatten any parts that might have raised more than others (typically the edges). This will help the ganache coat evenly. Leave in pan and set on wire rack to cool.
While brownies are cooling, make your ganache to pour over the top (which you will want to do while your brownies are still warm). To do so, simply heat butter and cream on medium power (taking care not to boil) in the microwave and add chocolate. Stir until all lumps disappear. Immediately pour over brownies. Let cool completely (we find placing them in the fridge helps up stay out of the pan until they the ganache is set 100%). Once chilled a knife will cut through them cleanly, make sure to clean your blade for each cut for a more polished look.
With love, and sugar. Enjoy!