Outrageous Oreo Brownies

Here’s a question for you – how do you take the most outrageous brownie recipe and turn it into something completely and totally over the top?

By adding Oreos!

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I don’t know if this recipe actually belongs to Ina, or if someone just dreamed up this amazing concoction – but let me tell you, these are truly spectacular. Even more outrageous than the regular recipe, adding a box of broken up Oreos was a move similar to the invention of laptop computers. Once you have one, you wonder to yourself, how did I ever live without it?

I made a half batch, took half of the pan to a birthday party last weekend, where they disappeared in less than 3.4 minutes – and the other half are going to Alexander’s class for his Field Day on Wednesday. Now I just need to go buy more Oreos so I can make more for me ~

Outrageous Oreo Crunch Brownies – adapted from Ina Garten

1 pound unsalted butter
1 pound bittersweet chocolate, cut into chunks
6 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
7 large eggs
2 tablespoons instant espresso powder
2 tablespoons vanilla
2 1/4 cups granulated sugar
1 cup plus 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
4 cups chopped Oreo cookies

Preheat the oven to 350.

Butter and flour an 12 x 18 x 1 baking pan. (I used a 9 x 13 pan) In a heatproof medium bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water, heat butter, chocolate chunks and unsweetened chocolate until melted and smooth. Set aside and allow to cool slightly.

In a large bowl, stir together eggs, coffee, vanilla and sugar. Blend chocolate mixture into egg mixture and allow to cool to room temperature.

In a medium bowl, whisk together 1 cup flour, baking powder and salt. Add flour mixture to chocolate mixture. In a medium bowl, toss together Oreos and remaining 1/4 cup flour. Add Oreo mixture to chocolate mixture and gently fold to combine. Pour batter into baking pan and smooth top with a rubber spatula.

Bake 28-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted 3 inches from center comes out clean with some crumbs attached; do not overbake.

Rose’s Cocoa Brownies

Today’s brownie comes from Cindy, who emailed me the recipe for Rose Levy Beranbaum’s Cocoa Brownies. Cindy said these are a snap to make –  and she was right – these were quick and easy to make. They qualify as a one-bowl brownie, and I honestly think it took me longer to scale down the recipe down than it did to prepare the batter (no comments on the math skills, please).

I liked these – and the kids did too, because they are plain, simple and had a smooth, mellow flavor, but were surprisingly chocolatey considering they are made with cocoa powder only. They are good for those times when you don’t want a super dense, strongly flavored brownie. These would be great topped with a scoop of ice cream and hot fudge sauce.

Not that I would know anything about that.

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I don’t know if I was too vigorous in the mixing, because these puffed up considerably while baking, then deflated. Or maybe they are supposed to do that?

Aesthetics aside, these get my vote for speed and flavor.

Cocoa Brownies – adapted from Rose Levy Beranbaum

7 ounces unsalted butter  (14 tablespoons)
1.75 ounces unsweetened cocoa (preferably Dutch process)  (1/2 cup plus 2 teaspoons)
8.25 ounces sugar  (1 cup plus 3 tablespoons)
3 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
2.5 ounces flour  (½ cup)
pinch salt

Lightly grease an 8×8 inch pan. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.

In a medium saucepan melt the butter.  Remove from heat and stir in the cocoa.  Whisk in the sugar, then the eggs, then the vanilla.  Stir in the flour, salt, and nuts.  Scrape into the pan and level the top.

The directions say bake for 30 to 40 minutes  – but that seems a bit too long – so Cindy says to check at 22 minutes – you want a toothpick inserted into the center to come out with moist crumbs on it.

Cool the pan on a wire rack; loosen the sides. When completely cooled, cut into squares.

Supernatural Brownies

Can I be honest here? I mean really, totally, and completely honest?

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One bite of these brownies is like a bite of heaven. If you could take a bite of heaven, that is.

I made these brownies the day my computer crashed. I was throwing a serious pity party – and what better way to make myself feel better than with loads of chocolate?

I was right, though, I DID feel better.

But more than that, I think Ina’s brownies just lost their #1 position.

Make these at your own risk.

Supernatural Brownies – adapted from Nick Malgieri

2 sticks (1/2 pound) unsalted butter
8 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
4 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
One 13x9x2-inch pan, buttered and lined with buttered parchment or foil
1. Set the rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees.
2. Bring a saucepan of water to a boil and turn off heat. Combine butter and chocolate in a heat proof bowl and set over pan of water. Stir occasionally until melted.
3. Whisk eggs together in a large bowl, then whisk in the salt, sugars, and vanilla. Stir in the chocolate and butter mixture, then fold in the flour.
4. Pour batter into prepared pan and spread evenly. Bake for about 45 minutes, until top has formed a shiny crust and batter is moderately firm. Cool in pan on a rack. Wrap pan in plastic wrap and keep at room temperature or refrigerated until the next day.
5. To cut brownies, unmold onto a cutting board, remove paper, and replace with another cutting board. Turn cake right side up and trim away edges. Cut brownies into 2-inch squares.