best {?} brownies

One of my favorite bloggers, Deb at smitten kitchen, posted Alice Medrich's Brownie recipe. While I love Maida Heatter's Palm Beach Brownies, I'm always on the lookout for a better brownie. This just might be it.

Valrhona Cocoa Powder is a must.

I'm not as discriminating with vanilla extract. Costco's Kirkland brand is just fine.

Yesterday, I learned that a plastic knife cuts brownies perfectly. Why was I not told this thirty years ago?

Scrumpdelicious- the Kids have crowned these brownies their all-time favorite. Tell me if they're yours!

Best {?} Brownies
Adapted from Alice Medrich’s Bittersweet
Makes 16 larger or 25 smaller brownies (the size you see pictured yielded 25)

Printable Recipe

10 tablespoons (1 1/4 sticks, 5 ounces or 141 grams) unsalted butter
1 1/4 cups (9 7/8 ounces, 280 grams) sugar
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons (2 7/8 ounces, 82 grams) unsweetened cocoa powder (natural or Dutch-process)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 large eggs, cold
1/2 cup (2 3/8 ounces, 66 grams) all-purpose flour

Position a rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat the oven to 325°F. Line the bottom and sides of an 8×8-inch square baking pan with foil, leaving an overhang on two opposite sides. Butter the foil.
Combine the butter, sugar, cocoa, and salt in a medium heatproof bowl and set the bowl over a saucepan of barely simmering water. Stir until the butter is melted and the mixture is smooth. Remove the bowl from the pan and set aside briefly until the mixture is warm, not hot.
Stir in the vanilla. Add the eggs one at a time; stir until fully incorporated. Add the flour and stir until you cannot see it any longer, then beat vigorously for 40 strokes.
Bake until a toothpick plunged into the center emerges slightly moist with batter, 25 minutes.
Let cool in pan, then lift up the ends the foil and transfer the brownies to a cutting board. Cut into 16 or 25 squares.


  1. Yum! I wish I were in your warm kitchen sampling some of those brownies right now. It's a cold rainy day here in Oakland.

  2. so...you think you might visit again soon, WITH SOME OF THESE BROWNIES???? Looks delicious!

    i also love smittenkitchen, and i look forward to butter adventures here!

  3. I would most certainly make a pan for you and your boys, but better yet, we could have a Blind Brownie Testing. Heatter vs. Medrich vs. Keller.

  4. Eric will be pleased to see you use the Kirkland
    vanilla. He's been trying to sell me on its merits
    since we got the giant bottle a year and a half ago.
    If you say it's fine I might finally accept it.
    I can't wait to make these brownies. The plastic knife?
    What a breakthrough! Thanks!

  5. Just made these for a family dinner this afternoon. I didn't have Valrhona cocoa, but used Ghirardelli that I had in my cupboard. They stuck a bit to the foil, so perhaps they should have stayed in the oven a minute or two longer. They are dense and goo-ey (but firm) and delicious in their goo-ey-ness. Yes, I sampled one "just to be sure" they were ok to serve to others.

  6. Next time, butter the foil. That would help (and I'll add that to the recipe!)


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