Monday, January 31, 2011

A Most Delightful Combination.

Pretty much immediately when I got home from school the other day, I began rummaging in the cabinets, looking for ingredients. I was aiming for something quick and delicious. 
I remembered my friend Molly over at Secret Shelf Life (check her out, she writes lovely book reviews) made some awesome brownies from my favorite food blogger in the world, Joy the Baker. 
Mm, this is such a good combination. I wish I could have been the first person to think of it. The salty-ness goes really nicely with the dark chocolate and peanut butter (especially if you use natural). 
Yeah, I'm weird.
If you leave these in the fridge for a while, they'll pretty much turn into a dense, chocolate peanut butter torte. Mm. 

Chocolate Peanut Butter Pretzel Brownies

8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter
2 ounces unsweetened chocolate, coarsely chopped
4 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 teaspoon instant coffee (optional)
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon  salt
coarse sea salt for topping
For the Peanut Butter Filling:
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1/2 cup powdered sugar
3/4 cup smooth peanut butter, I prefer natural peanut butter
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
large handful of pretzel sticks

Place a rack in the upper third of the oven and preheat to 325 degrees F.  Grease an 8×8-inch baking pan.  Line with parchment paper so that it overhangs on two sides and grease the parchment paper as well.
Boil two inches of water in a medium saucepan.  Combine butter, unsweetened chocolate, semi-sweet chocolate and coffee powder in a heat proof bowl and place over the simmering water.  Stir until chocolate and butter are melted.  Use a pot holder to remove the bowl from the double boiler and let mixture cool slightly.  Stir in the vanilla extract.

In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt.
Whisk granulated sugar into the chocolate and butter mixture.  Make sure the chocolate mixture isn’t too hot and whisk the eggs in the mixture one at a time.

Fold in the flour mixture into the chocolate mixture and spoon into prepared pan.

To make the Peanut Butter Filling, whisk together peanut butter, melted butter, powdered sugar, salt and vanilla extract until smooth.

Pour the peanut butter mixture on top of the brownie batter and use a butter knife to swirl the two together.  Arrange pretzel sticks on top of the brownie batter in whatever pattern makes you happy.  Top with a few sprinkles of coarse sea salt.  Bake for 40 to 45 minutes until a skewer inserted in the center comes our mostly clean… maybe with just a few crumbs.
Let cool for about 30 minutes before slicing and enjoying.

1 comment:

  1. Mmmm, PB and chocolate... *swoony sigh* Tomorrow I'm making my insane PB&C cheesecake bliss for my half birthday. It is going to be quite the undertaking... For one thing, I've never made cheesecake before. Hopefully it is not a disaster. Speaking of Joy the Baker and her culinary brilliance, I made my family pancake muffins* for breakfast this morning. They're more like desert than breakfast (especially because I added Reese's chips... what can I say?) but they're still pretty yummy and unique. I've decided I like the je ne sais quoi added by browned butter; I should look into some more recipes with it...



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