ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Best Brownies Ever--How to Make Brownies Your Way

Updated on August 20, 2017
Carb Diva profile image

Exploring food facts, folklore, and fabulous recipes... one ingredient at a time.

Before We Begin...

I am a brownie purist.

No three-layer toppings, no mint, peanut butter, or raspberry jam swirl. Walnuts only if the brownies have been chilled. And they must be dense and fudgy. I want my brownies like my Starbucks--dark and rich. I don't want cakey brownies. If I want cake I'll order cake.

OK, now that I have been allowed to vent...

Who invented brownies?

There are several myths about the origin of brownies. The first is that a baker accidentally added melted chocolate to biscuit dough. That hardly seems feasible when one considers the texture of biscuit dough and the amount of kneading that would be required to blend the chocolate thoroughly. The second myth is that a baker forgot to add flour to a cake batter. Yes, there are numerous (successful) recipes for flourless chocolate cake, but the proportions of other ingredients (sugar, eggs, butter, etc.) are far different than for a cake with flour. Simply omitting flour from a chocolate cake recipe will not result in anything edible. The third and more believable story is that a housewife in Bangor, Maine did not have available or forgot to add baking powder. The resulting “flat” cake was the birth of the brownie. This recipe was published in 1912.

None of these are true.

We actually need to wind back the clock a bit more.

At the Boston Cooking School, founded in 1879, Fannie Farmer instructed women in how best to run a kitchen. She and other educators in the school promoted the concept of running an efficient, business-like home; with classrooms, lecture tours, and degree programs they endorsed what would eventually come to be known as “home economics.”

Fannie Farmer published a recipe for brownies in the 1896 Boston Cooking School Cook Book, but it contained no chocolate.

Brownies

1/3 cup butter
1/3 cup powdered sugar
1/3 cup Porto Rico molasses
1 egg well beaten
7/8 cup bread flour
1 cup pecan meat cut in pieces

Mix ingredients in order given. Bake in small, shallow fancy cake tins, garnishing top of each cake with one-half pecan.

5 stars from 1 rating of Best Brownies EVER

Two more chocolate brownie recipes followed in prominent publications, first in Fannie Farmer’s 1906 version of the Boston Cooking-School Cook Book, with a recipe similar to the Bangor Brownies mentioned above. This was certainly the most widely circulated version of the chocolate brownie recipe due to the immense popularity of Farmer’s work. In 1907, Maria Willett Howard, a student of Farmer’s, wrote two brownie recipes for Lowney’s Cook Book (from the Walter M. Lowney chocolate company), with differing amounts of egg, chocolate, and sugar.

Source

Cakey, Chewy, or Fudgy?

What is your preference? And (more importantly) how do you get what you want?

The difference between a cakey brownie, a chewy brownie, and a fudgy brownie is in the ratio of fat (and chocolate) to flour. Cakey brownies will use more flour; fudgy brownies will use less.

There are so many different types of chocolate available today. Will you use semi-sweet chocolate chips, or chocolate bars containing 60%, 70%, or 85% cacao? And, does it matter?

Ingredient
Cakey
Chewy
Fudgy
Unsweetened chocolate
3 oz.
4 oz.
2 oz.
Bittersweet chocolate
 
 
5 oz.
Butter, softened
1/4 cup
1/2 cup
10 tablespoons
Sugar
3/4 cup
1 1/2 cups
1 cup
Eggs
2
2
2
Egg yolks
 
 
1
Milk
1/4 cup
 
 
Light corn syrup
1 tablespoon
 
 
Vanilla
1 tsp.
2 teaspoons
2 teaspoons
Flour
1/2 cup
1 cup
2/3 cup
Baking powder
1/2 teaspoon
 
 
Unsweetened cocoa powder
 
2 tablespoons
 

Special equipment you will need

  • double boiler
  • medium saucepan
  • mixing spoon
  • mixing bowl
  • wire whisk
  • 8-inch square pan
  • non-stick cooking spray
  • parchment paper

Instructions for all brownies

  1. Coat the bottom only of an 8-inch square pan with non-stick cooking spray.
  2. Next cut a piece of parchment paper 8-inches wide. Place in the prepared pan with the long ends extending over two sides (these will act as handles to help you remove the baked brownies from their pan).
  3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  4. DON'T overmix your brownie batter. It's OK to have a few streaks of flour. Overworking the batter will make tough brownies, and no one wants that!
cakey brownies
cakey brownies | Source

Instructions for Cakey brownies

  • Melt chocolate over simmering water in double boiler; set aside.
  • Cream together butter and sugar; add eggs, milk, corn syrup, and vanilla
  • Beat in melted chocolate.
  • Stir in flour and baking powder.
  • Pour into prepared pan.
  • Bake 23-30 minutes.

chewy brownies
chewy brownies | Source

Instructions for Chewy Brownies

  • Melt butter and chocolate together over very low heat in medium saucepan.
  • Remove from heat; add sugar, eggs, and vanilla.
  • Mix well.
  • Stir in flour and cocoa powder.
  • Spread in prepared pan.
  • Bake 35-40 minutes.

fudgy brownies
fudgy brownies | Source

Instructions for Fudgy brownies

  • Melt butter and chocolate together over very low heat in medium saucepan.
  • Remove from heat.
  • Mix in sugar, vanilla, and salt.
  • Whisk in eggs and yolk until well combined.
  • Add flour; mix well.
  • Pour into prepared pan.
  • Bake 35-45 minutes.

© 2014 Linda Lum

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • Carb Diva profile imageAUTHOR

      Linda Lum 

      3 months ago from Washington State, USA

      Janisa - I totally agree with you. If I want chocolate cake, I'll bake a cake. I want my brownies dense and fudge-like. Thank you so much for stopping by and leaving a comment.

    • JanisaChatte profile image

      Janisa 

      3 months ago from Earth

      I love a combination of chewy and fudgy brownie. I try to avoid cakey brownies as much as possible — I've got chocolate cake for that.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)