Monday, October 12, 2009

Barcelona Brownie Bars




Rose's Heavenly Cakes, page 367, Barcelona Brownie Bars
Recipe can also be found at Rose Levy's website.

I'm so envious of the 10 heavenly cake bakers who got Rose Levy's autographed book! They are so lucky! Congrats to all of you & you know who you are! ;) I wish i can get Rose's autograph too! I wonder if she can autograph on a piece of paper/postcard, mail to me and i paste it on my current book?? o_O ;P

I didn't have the Lekue silicone brownie mold mentioned in the book. I went all over town to look for similar silicone cake pans but they were all out of stock! :( I wanted to order online but realised it wouldn't arrive on time since it will probably take at least 2 weeks to reach Asia. So, in the end, i baked the brownies in a mini heart-shaped pans instead.

I mixed the batter using the Hand Method provided in the book. Baked the brownies for only 10mins since my heart shaped pans are much smaller and at a lower than stated oven temp of 150C (dark-colored pan absorbed more heat). I used my faux-ivory chopsticks to poke through the centre of the brownies. Initially i used the wooden one (the long huge ones i use for cooking) but the soft brownie centre kept getting stuck to the chopstick, so i got fedup and used the plastic one instead. Thereafter, I piped the ganache into the centre of brownies, but since i had lots of ganache left, i coated the top of the brownies with ganache as well.

Will the Heavenly Cake Bakers group flip if i mention again that i don't really like pecan nuts..o_O :p!? In case you all are wondering, i do eat nuts but just not walnuts, pecan nuts & pine nuts (that's all i can think of at the moment...lol!). Hence I am not sure if i bought a packet of rancid pecan nuts or if i didn't roast them long enough or it is just how pecan nuts is. To me, the nuts have this very distinct "oily nut" taste that seems to overwhelm the chocolate in the brownies, hence another reason why i coated the top of the brownies with more ganache. My family enjoyed the brownies, but they too did mention the weird taste in the pecan nuts. But since i hardly eat pecan nuts, i can't tell if it is rancid (but i just bought the nuts and expiry is only a year later!) or it is just how pecan nuts taste like..? *shrugs*

To get unbias opinion, i brought the brownies to office next morning for tasting. Well, my boss said there's nothing wrong with the brownies or the pecan nuts and he said it's very good. My office colleague who ate a piece liked the brownies and confirmed that it is the distinct flavor of pecan nuts. Again, even for my dislike for pecan nuts, i did eat a few pieces and i have to admit i love the soft & moist texture of the brownies. It's not overly sweet and it complements well with the chocolate ganache. I would definitely bake the brownies again but minus the pecan nuts..:p

For the next cake - the apple-upside-down-cake..i'm sooo gonna use almonds! LOL!

16 comments:

Jenn on October 12, 2009 at 10:08 PM said...

Faithy, I love the pictures with the ganache glazed over the top - very cute. And I like that you use a different pan. I'm one of the HCB and no I'm not flipping that you don't like pecans (I don't like cashews that much). I do think it's great that you still make it with pecans even though you didn't like it. Great job!

faithy, the amateur baker on October 12, 2009 at 11:03 PM said...

Thanks Jenn! I just checked your blog, you didn't bake the brownies this week?

Jenn on October 12, 2009 at 11:20 PM said...

No, I didn't, :(. Had too much desserts over the weekend. And I'm baking Chocolate Croissant (from Rose's Pastry Bible) tonight. Though now I'm thinking I should try to squeeze in time to make the brownie.

faithy, the amateur baker on October 12, 2009 at 11:28 PM said...

Wow..chocolate croissant sounds good! I haven't ventured into many croissants yet..i'm afraid of puff pastry..lol!

Jenn on October 12, 2009 at 11:37 PM said...

It's not as hard as people think. Most of the work is in waiting - it's hours from beginning (mixing the dough) to end (croissant comes out of the oven). If you follow Rose's recipe, the result would be excellent (it's important to use very good quality butter). I've only tried the croissant dough for puff pastry.

Jenn on October 13, 2009 at 4:49 AM said...

Faithy - I just looked at the older posts of your blog. One word: WOW! You've made so many wonderful things. The sugar craft roses look so pretty. And such perfect macaroons! I've only made the chocolate ones - have not experiment with other flavors. After seeing all you've made, I think puff pastry should be a piece of cake for you. Your only problem would be humidity and weather.

breadbasketcase on October 13, 2009 at 6:13 AM said...

I really like the heart-shaped brownies. I love pecans (don't you even like pecan pie?), but if I didn't like them, I guess I might not like these. I like cashews too. But I'm not crazy about black walnuts.

faithy, the amateur baker on October 13, 2009 at 9:15 AM said...

Hi Jenn, thanks for your kind words! If i do venture into croissant, i will sure look at Rose's Pastry Bible..!

faithy, the amateur baker on October 13, 2009 at 9:19 AM said...

Hi Marie, i'm not crazy about pecan pie either..lol! I guess i still will eat them (walnuts & pecan) just that they are not my favorite. :)

Hanaâ on October 13, 2009 at 12:33 PM said...

Oooooh I love the extra layer of ganache on top of the brownies. I didn't have a chance to bake along this week as I'm in the middle of a kitchen remodeling project, but if I did, I would have used almonds instead of pecans.

faithy, the amateur baker on October 13, 2009 at 12:38 PM said...

Hi Hanaâ! Can't wait for you to join us with the bake-off! :) When will the remodeling of your kitchen be over?

Jenn on October 13, 2009 at 10:36 PM said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jenn on October 13, 2009 at 10:38 PM said...

Ok let's try this again. I left a comment earlier with a link but it didn't take the whole link. Faithy, I baked the Chocolate Croissant last night. I post it on Rose's forum. Here's the link:
http://www.realbakingwithrose.com/
index_ee.php/forums/viewthread/1466/

faithy, the amateur baker on October 13, 2009 at 10:42 PM said...

Thanks Jenn! :D

Sherrie on October 14, 2009 at 3:21 AM said...

Faithy, those are awesome. I half debated putting ganache on top, but the caramel ganache is intense, so I thought plugs should do. Love the hearts!

ButterYum on October 14, 2009 at 4:30 AM said...

I won't flip to know that you don't like walnuts in your brownies. I have a love/hate relationship with nuts... sometimes I don't mind them in baked goods, other times I don't want them in there. Brownies are one of the times I don't want them in there!

Btw, fabulous photos!

 

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