Friday, 4 June 2010

Battle of the brownies

I have a wedding order coming up in July.  The bride is the sister of someone I used to work with.  The wedding reception in a huge Lawrence of Arabia style tent, all atmospheric, pointy roofed and romantic.  The bride and groom have requested a mix of carrot cupcakes and banana and walnut cupcakes.  To match the theme I have suggested a sophisticated mix of gold and bronze stars with gold and bronze glitter as decoration, which I think will turn out very prettily.  It does mean making over 200 tiny sugar stars, but I think it's worth it.

They have also asked for chocolate brownies to serve as pudding alongside the cupcakes.  Now, I have made brownies before but wanted the recipe to be just perfect.  This meant researching and trying out various recipes on my willing volunteers.  It didn't take long to recruit them.  The boys and I have just had a lovely weekend at marvellous mum and dads, and as brainy bro and his partner were down for the weekend too they formed the trial group.  

The first recipe was a plain chocolate brownie, rich with dark chocolate, and the second was a double chocolate brownie made with dark chocolate and densely studded with milk and dark chocolate chips.  The trial group were unanimous. The double chocolate brownie won.  It scored much more highly on all counts of fudgyness, chocolateyness and squidgyness- all essential factors in the pursuit of brownie perfection.  The next day I visited an old school friend who I hadn't seem for years.  It was really lovely to see her, and meet her two kids.  They also agreed with the trial had to be the double chocolate brownie.

I have emailed my cousin in America for her top tips and brownie recipes and will be trying them out too.  This does of course mean more brownies for us to have to eat, purely for research of course.  It's a tough job, but some one has to do it... 


  1. I am always ready to be a brownie taste tester if ever you are short lol. Nigella's Snowflecked brownies are pretty awesome too just in case you need another recipe to throw into the mix. I seem to have hooked my office on them (oops!)

  2. Oh, there are so many really good brownie recipes - how many are you going to try?

  3. those look delicious - you are off to a great start! And if you decide one of the ones you already tried are better than the ones I sent, Please send that recipe to me! :) We Yanks love our brownies and are always willing to try new ones. Oh, the horrors of research...hahhahaa

  4. They look amazing...but where is the gold glitter!?!? x

  5. these do look wonderful... very lucky people... you could also try those massive Ottolenghi style marangues? always look very special and a big hit... love the blog by the way x

  6. thank you everyone for your comments. I have tried the snowflecked brownies- and they are good, nigella is always a winner, I must admit Im a fan (and did once meet her, but thats a story for another day)

    I like to try as many brownie recipes as I have time for, and next up are my cousin Barries (I say cousin, the family tree is that complicated, I reckon 'cousin' is good)

    I was wondering about adding a gold glitter heart, but not sure if the glitter would stick as the top of a brownie is on the dry side...I will see what I can do...

    Im intrigue as to what an Ottolenghi style meringue is, Im off to google it now.

    thanks all! x

  7. Check out those meringues here on my blog:

  8. Yup, I use "cousin" too. As you said, it's complicated. I'm sure there are "seconds" "thirds" or some manner of "removed" in there. Cousin is as good a catch-all as any! haha

    The Katharine Hepburn's are my favorite, but they ARE very very fudgey, so may not be to your liking (and you can also dress them up with choc chunks or chips or whatever you like). Am curious what you will think. :)