Wednesday, May 13, 2009

why i'm lucky

In the past two days I've received two different care packages that were mailed to me in Colorado and then sent on to me here.

1. When I noted here that I'd broken my favorite little cup, my stepmama sent me another pair so I could throw a tea party.

2. Like most crack dealers, mine "worships at the altar of...the Barefoot Contessa." And thank god for that. I received a second care package from my Tonto this afternoon, which included the Barefoot Contessa's Outrageous Brownies and Paula Deen's Brown Sugar Chewies; I've eaten an undisclosed number of each since then.

The Brown Sugar Chewies are almost like blondies but more chewy and caramel-y, and though this recipe does not appear to call for any cinnamon, I swear that was cinnamon in the batch I received. Delicious.

But what I cannot stop eating (literally CANNOT. STOP. EATING) are those brownies, which I believe are the best I've ever had. And I'm sort of a brownie aficionado (everyone should be good at at something; my expertise lies in the eating [not the making] of chocolate desserts). They're moist, super-chocolate-y, and appear to obey Suzette's three rules of brownie making.

1. Use good chocolate.
2. No nuts.
3. No fucking nuts!

If I were you, I would try to get adopted into my family and then go away to an art colony or summer camp or something and wait for the care packages to arrive. I was thinking of posting online adoption applications, which I would process for a small fee, but my family's love and generosity have inspired the same in me. I will waive the processing fee, though submitting a batch of those brownies with your application would not hurt your chances of becoming my new relative.

Outrageous Brownies
from the Barefoot Contessa

1 pound unsalted butter
1 pound plus 12 ounces semisweet chocolate chips, divided
6 ounces unsweetened chocolate
6 extra-large eggs
3 tablespoons instant coffee powder
2 tablespoons real vanilla extract
2 1/4 cups sugar
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, divided (1 cup for batter and 1/4 cup in the chips)
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt


1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour a 13 by 18 by 1 1/2-inch sheet pan.

2. Melt together the butter, 1 pound chocolate chips, and unsweetened chocolate on top of a double boiler. Cool slightly. Stir together the eggs, instant coffee, vanilla and sugar. Stir in the warm chocolate mixture and cool to room temperature.

3. Stir together 1 cup of the flour, baking powder and salt. Add to cooled chocolate mixture. Toss the 12 ounces of chocolate chips with 1/4 cup flour to coat. Then add to the chocolate batter. Pour into prepared pan.

4. Bake for about 30 minutes, or until tester just comes out clean. Halfway through the baking, rap the pan against the oven shelf to allow air to escape from between the pan and the brownie dough. Do not over-bake! Cool thoroughly, refrigerate well and cut into squares.


  1. I really, really need one of those brownies RIGHT NOW.

  2. I might be able to spare one.