Monday, May 16, 2011

Mexican Chocolate Streusel Brownies



I love Mexican chocolate in the winter. If you've never had Mexican chocolate, it's a blend of chocolate, sugar, ground almonds and cinnamon that you melt in milk and then whisk into a deliciously spicy chocolate froth. So when I came across this recipe for brownies, I couldn't wait to try it. The Mexican chocolate is only in the topping, giving it a crunchy chocolate almond flavor. The brownies are made with regular unsweetened chocolate, and are nice and fudgy. I usually prefer a chewier texture, but the fudgy brownie is a great contrast to the crunchy streusel. These look great on the plate and would be a great addition to bake sales and picnics.


Baker's Notes: Mexican chocolate is carried in most supermarkets, it's usually in the ethnic foods aisle. Using the original recipe as a starting point, I decreased the cinnamon and almond extract and added espresso powder, yet I still thought the almond extract was overpowering. I'll keep tinkering until I get it just right, these brownies are worth it. I always chill my brownies for awhile before slicing, so the cuts are even. If you're chilling them overnight before slicing, make sure to wrap them well in plastic so they don't dry out.


Mexican Chocolate Streusel Brownies
adapted from myrecipes.com

Brownies
  •     ¾    cup    butter -- (6 oz) cut into chunks
  •     9    oz    unsweetened chocolate -- finely chopped
  •     1 ½    cups    firmly packed brown sugar
  •     1    cup    granulated sugar
  •     5    large    eggs
  •     1 ½    tablespoons    vanilla extract
  •     1     teaspoon    almond extract (I'm using less next time)
  •     1 ½    cups    all-purpose flour
  •     1     teaspoon    ground cinnamon
  •     ½    teaspoon    baking powder
  •     ½    teaspoon    salt
  •     ½    teaspoon    espresso powder
Streusel
  •     ½    cup    all-purpose flour
  •     ¼    cup    brown sugar -- firmly packed
  •     5    tablespoons    unsalted butter -- cold
  •     4 ½    ounces    Mexican chocolate -- (like Ibarra brand), coarsely chopped


Preheat oven to 325°F.  Rinse a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with cold water, shake out the excess but do not dry. Flip the pan over, and place an 18 inch piece of foil, shiny side down, over the pan, and then mold the foil over the pan. Remove the foil, flip the pan back over, and line the pan with the foil. The drops of water will help the foil cling to the pan. Butter or spray the foil (you can use the butter wrapper).

In a large bowl set over a pan of barely simmering water, stir butter and unsweetened chocolate until melted and smooth. Remove from heat and whisk in brown sugar and granulated sugar. Add eggs one at a time, whisking well after each addition. Using a wooden spoon or silicone spatula, stir in vanilla and almond extract. Stir in flour, cinnamon, baking powder, espresso powder, and salt until well blended.

Spread batter level in the baking pan. Squeeze handfuls of the Mexican chocolate streusel until it sticks together, then crumble into chunks evenly over surface of batter.

Bake brownies in a 325° oven until a wooden skewer inserted in the center comes out with moist crumbs attached, 30 to 35 minutes. Let cool in pan on a rack for an hour, then chill for another 30-60 minutes. Lift the brownies from the pan using the foil, then slice with a sharp knife into 24 or 32 squares.

Mexican chocolate streusel. In a food processor or a bowl, whirl or stir all-purpose flour and brown sugar until well blended. Add butter and whirl or rub in with your fingers until mixture forms coarse crumbs. Pulse in coarsely chopped Mexican chocolate (some larger chunks will remain), or chop finely with a knife and stir into flour mixture. Use immediately or chill airtight for up to 1 week.

2 comments:

  1. Yum!!! I love brownies! I have never tried Mexican chocolate...so next time I am at the super market I will check it out.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi Frances!

    These were fantastic even a few days later, I really hope you try them, and let me know what you think.

    ReplyDelete

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