Thursday, October 27, 2011
Brookies Gone Wild
Make Up Your Mind by Theory of A Deadman
The recipe today can't make up it's mind if it's a cookie or a brownie. It's both, really. And each part can stand on it's own. But why would they do that when they're so good together? I imagine the layers fighting amongst themselves - one threatening to split and go their own way and return to their "solo" career. But, in the end, them being together proves that the whole is greater than the sum of it's parts. And I want to be a part of anything that good! This song is about that same struggle - people talking about breaking up but ultimately staying together - Brookie Love.
Have you ever set out to do a task, only to get distracted by another task along the way? That's kind of what happened to me and how I arrived at today's post.
My friend and I got together a few weeks ago to work on a knitting project. She had some questions and I was there to sort of help her out. We made a morning out of it - knitting away, solving the world's problems - the usual. When it was time for lunch we agreed to go check out the new bistro in town.
I love discovering new places to eat!
Everything on the menu sounded tantalizing but we finally made our selections and we weren't disappointed. For having only been open two days I thought they were operating marvelously. Dishes were cleared and then the server had the nerve to ask that question. The "would you ladies like some dessert?" question. I had already decided I was NOT going to have dessert. I was being a "good" girl. So, of course, when they asked I said, "Heck, yes, I would!" So much for steely determination.
As we looked over the dessert menu I pretty much wanted one of everything. But that would be silly, right? Don't worry! I chose only one and we shared - and by shared I mean I had 3/4 and she had the rest. And that's actually where real the story begins.
It was a s'mores inspired dessert - graham cracker crust bottom, brownie layer, chocolate ganache layer, topped with toasted marshmallows. Soooo good! I knew right away I had to find a way to make it myself and put my own spin on it. But, what would I do? I know - I would add nuts to the crust and I could put coconut in it somewhere, too. I'd put another layer in there - maybe a cookie layer. Hey - even better, I'll use cookie crumbs instead of graham cracker crumbs! No! I'll just make the bottom layer the cookie layer! No grahams at all! I really liked that idea! A cookie crust, a brownie layer, the ganache and then the toasted marshmallow.
But that's not a s'more anymore! A s'more really needs to have the elements of the traditional cookout goodie - grahams, chocolate, and marshmallow! It is written somewhere - I'm sure!
I was really in love with my idea, though, and figured I'd have to just come up with a name for my new creation. A cookie and a brownie - let's see - I'll call it a brookie! That's it! I'm so clever! And then I googled it - to see if anyone else could have possibly been as clever as I. Uh, yeah. Many people had been just that clever. Oh well, so I didn't "invent" the brookie. But I do make mine differently than most so that's something! Most have the brownie layer on the bottom and crumble the cookie dough on top. And they don't add ganache and marshmallows. That's just me - any reason to get more ganache into my body.
Before we get started I'm going to have to make a disclaimer on this one. These are addictive. As you take the last bite you will be sad, and you'll be thinking that "if you just had one more bite" you'd be good. But more leads to more - and that's the only connection to a s'more, folks! During my trial run I ended up having to throw most of them away. They were so dang good I could not pass them on the counter and not eat one - even with my steely determination! Finally, in frustration with myself, I picked up the plate, walked over to the trash and in they went. I had already determined that my recipe not only worked, it was delicious! No need to keep torturing myself. I think you'll agree.
If you end up with leftover cookie dough or brownie batter, just freeze it. I'd scoop the cookie dough into balls the size you need first and then freeze them, wrapped well. That way you'll have some on hand to make a batch up quickly when you want to give a treat to a neighbor or friend as a "thank you," "get better," or "way to go!" gift.
Brookies makes about 24
Printable Recipe Card
1 c. unsalted butter (227 g)
2 c. brown sugar (440 g)
3 T. milk (45 g)
1 1/2 T. almond extract
3 c. flour (375 g)
1 1/2 t. salt
1/2 t. baking soda
8 oz. mini chocolate chip morsels
Cream butter and sugar together well until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, making sure each one is incorporated before adding the next. Add the milk and almond extract and mix. Combine the flour, salt, and baking soda in another bowl, whisking to be sure they are well combined. Add the dry ingredients all at once to the wet and stir just until combined. As soon as the flour starts to blend with the wet ingredients, add the mini morsels. When all is combined, set aside.
4 oz. unsweetened chocolate squares
1 c. unsalted butter (227 g)
2 c. sugar (400 g)
1 1/2 t. vanilla extract or coffee-flavored syrup (i.e. Torani's)
1 c. flour (125 g)
Melt the chocolate square and the butter in a pan over medium heat or in a bowl in the microwave, stirring every 20 seconds, until just melted. Stir in the sugar and mix until well blended. Add the eggs and extract or flavoring and stir until incorporated. Stir the flour in and stir until just mixed.
1 lb. chocolate chips
2 c. heavy cream
Place the chocolate chips or chopped chocolate in a glass or metal bowl with plenty of room for stirring.
Heat the cream in a pan over medium heat until it just starts to simmer. Don't go too far. Nothing likes to boil up and out of the pan faster than dairy! Just bring it to a simmer.
Pour the cream over the chocolate and let it sit for one minute. After a minute, stir until all the cream and chocolate are blended together and it has a smooth and satiny sheen.
1 lb. mini-marshmallows
You will also need cupcake liners and a muffin tin.
Preheat oven to 350.
Line the muffin tin with the cupcake liners. Place a generous tablespoon of cookie dough in each cup. Using the bottom of a glass that's the same size as the bottom of the cup, squish the dough down so it is evenly spread across the bottom. Spray the bottom of the glass with cooking spray to keep it from sticking.
Bake cookie layer 5 min. and tap tray on counter when you take them from the oven to sink the dough back down.
Add about 3 T. of brownie batter over the cookie layer. The heat from the cookie dough will help the batter spread out evenly. What you're looking for is leaving about 1/2 inch of space on top for the ganache. I pour in the batter until I have that much head space on top. Bake for 6 min., turn the pans, and bake 6 min. more. If you insert a toothpick in the center it should come out clean. Cool. You can remove the brookies from the muffin tin in their liners at this point. Add the layer of ganache almost to the top. Top with some Marshmallows. Toast under the broiler, keeping a very close eye. Don't be tempted to walk away! Once they are toasted golden you can chill them to help set the ganache. Serve at room temperature. If this is your first brookie, please pull up a chair and give yourself time to enjoy.