High Country Baking: Tart pan brownie
When is a brownie more than a bar cookie? When it’s baked in a tart pan, drizzled with white and dark chocolate, and served in slices for dessert. It’s all we love about a brownie but with an added touch of class. Testers claim it’s as gooey and rich as any lava cake when served warm and just as pleasing at room temperature when it’s soft and chocolatey. Add a scoop of coffee or vanilla ice cream, or a rosette of whipped cream and a scatter of raspberries, and you’ve got a winning last course. It’s wow factor belies the ease with which it’s made: 15 minutes of active time gets it in the oven.
The chocolate chips you use are critical to the brownie’s success. Use the best ones you can find. My preference is a mixture of Trader Joe’s 72% cacao chips and Guittard’s semisweet ones — the combination provides a strong hit of rich, mildly sweet, dark chocolate. The addition of coffee powder doesn’t add flavor, but it gives a welcome depth to the chocolate. You can make this gem in a 10-inch tart pan if you double the recipe. If you do so, use three eggs in place of the eggs and egg yolks.
Tart pan brownie
Make in a 7 ½-inch shiny metal tart pan with a removable bottom. This Recipe works at any elevation.
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour, spoon and level
- 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/8 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 ½ cups semisweet and/or 72% cacao mini chocolate chips, divided
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 large egg
- 1 large egg yolk
- ½ cup granulated sugar, preferably superfine
- 1 ½ teaspoons instant coffee powder or granules
- ½ teaspoon vanilla paste or extract
- 3 tablespoons semisweet chocolate chips
- 3 tablespoons white chocolate chips
- 1 teaspoon canola oil
Get ready: Preheat the oven to 325 degrees, with a rack in the center position. Grease your pan with a baking spray that contains flour. Line the pan bottom with a circle of parchment paper and grease the paper. Set the pan aside. Combine the flour, salt and baking powder in a bowl and whisk to combine well. Stir in ½ cup of the chocolate chips and set the bowl aside.
Melt the butter and chocolate: Cut up the butter and add it, with the remaining cup of chocolate chips, to another bowl that is microwave-safe. Warm it in a microwave oven at a low temperature, until the butter melts and the chips are very soft and partially melted. Remove the bowl from the oven and stir until the chocolate is fully melted and the mixture is smooth and shiny. Set the bowl aside and cool the mixture to room temperature.
Make the dough: In a large mixing bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the egg, egg yolk, sugar, coffee powder and vanilla extract at medium-high speed until it’s light and fluffy — about two or three minutes. At low speed, stir in the cooled chocolate-butter mixture. Finally, fold in the flour mixture. stopping as soon as the dry ingredients are no longer visible. Don’t overmix!
Bake and cool: Scrape the thick batter into the prepared pan, level the top and bake until the center is set and puffs a little but the inside is still very soft. Start checking at 22 minutes, and err on the side of underdone. All that wonderful gooey texture depends on how long the batter is baked, and it will continue to firm up as it cools, so don’t overbake it! Remove to a cooling rack and cool until room temperature, then invert the pan on a plate, carefully remove the pan sides, bottom and parchment paper.
Add the drizzle, if using: Chop the two chocolates into small pieces, add them to separate microwave-safe bowls, and warm in a microwave oven until almost melted. Take care, both white and dark chocolate will seize (turn grainy) if overheated, so keep the temperature low and remove them from the oven before they have fully melted. Add ½-teaspoon oil to each bowl and stir until each mixture is smooth and shiny. Drizzle them, one at a time, over the top of the brownie. Set it aside until the chocolates firm up.
Store and Serve: Cover and refrigerate for up to three days. Before serving, let it warm up until just cooler than room temperature and cut it into slices with a sharp knife. Serve or reheat in a microwave or low-temperature oven and serve warm. Accompany with ice cream.
Editor’s note: This recipe is a variation of one published by Ina Garten.
Vera Dawson’s column “High Country Baking” publishes biweekly in the Summit Daily News. Dawson is a high-elevation baking instructor and author of three high-altitude cookbooks. Her recipes have been tested in her kitchen in Frisco, where she’s lived since 1991, and altered until they work at elevation. Contact her at email@example.com.
Support Local Journalism
Support Local Journalism
As a Summit Daily News reader, you make our work possible.
Summit Daily is embarking on a multiyear project to digitize its archives going back to 1989 and make them available to the public in partnership with the Colorado Historic Newspapers Collection. The full project is expected to cost about $165,000. All donations made in 2023 will go directly toward this project.
Every contribution, no matter the size, will make a difference.