Friday, July 29, 2011

Buttermilk Brownies: Grab a Fork

Buttermilk is a workhorse I often employ in this house-it's cheaper than sour cream or yogurt and more versatile in baking, with just as many savory applications as sweet...and fantastic for soaking your chicken or fish in before frying if you aren't making biscuits, scones, muffins, pancakes or soda bread. And now I can add brownies to the list.

These are not your traditional brownies, dark dense and chewy. Actually, they remind me of a Texas sheet cake-complete with the frosting you apply while the pan is still hot, creating a crusty glaze. The base is moist, with a fine crumb. And  while they cut clean and easy, you might be tempted to use a plate and fork to eat them....or a spoon and a scoop of ice cream. You get a lot of brownie for the work-you'll need a 15x10 pan instead of the traditional 9x11 pyrex or casserole dish.

So, grab your big pan and give it a spray then preheat your oven to 400 (see, not even your usual baking temperature).

In your mixer bowl, combine these ingredients:

2 cups of sugar
2 cups AP flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda

Measure out
1 cup of buttermilk
2 eggs
1 Tbs vanilla

Now for the fun part; in a saucepan, melt together
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
1 cup water
1/4 cup cocoa
1/2 cup oil

Stir while you bring this all to a boil. Remove from the heat and pour over the flour/sugar mixture in your mixer bowl. Blend them together and scrape down the bowl with a spatula before adding in the buttermilk and then the eggs and vanilla.
the batter is thin and

Pour this lovely, shiny batter into the prepared pan and set your timer for 15 minutes. There is a good chance you will need to bake them longer-closer to 20 minutes but in the last few minutes, you'll be mixing up the frosting that gets added to the brownies hot.

So, wash out your mixing bowl and blend together the following:

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
1/4 cup cocoa
1/3 cup buttermilk
1 tsp vanilla
1# or 4 cups of powdered sugar
1 cup chopped pecans

Beat them together-it will lighten in color a little as it comes together.

As soon as your brownies are done (test it like a cake-use a toothpick for no wet batter or press lightly on the center to see if it springs back), pull them out and spread the frosting over the pan. Weird, huh?  But oh so yummy.

 As the pan cools, the frosting forms that delicious crustiness. These aren't overly rich or chocolately-just the right amount for an after school snack or to dress up with ice cream with some sauce for after dinner dessert.  And since the pan is large, it's great for potlucks, company or the now-possible Sunday football game crew.
 I should have side view of the finished product but I've been busy eating them or laughing at Mr. Devlin's guilty look as he goes back for seconds.


Anonymous said...

and to think, the only thing I've seen my family do with buttermilk is drink it. my nanna had a half glass a night.

Mrs. V said...

My Dad used to do the same--only he like a big tall glass, cold, with lots of pepper. I think if he knew I could do this with it, he's have handed it over :)

Anonymous said...

must be a farmer thing. my nan was a farmer and she always talked about having buttermilk all the time with my great grandparents.

lordy, is she only knew there were other things beside buttermilk in a glass or pancakes. lol