Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Raw Brownies (will make your heart melt)

Praise, pictures, and more praise - nothing will do these brownies right. You need to make these yourself. I guarantee you will be impressed by how amazing they taste, despite the fact that the closest these brownies get to melted butter and chocolate is one half cup of unsweetened cocoa powder - I am not joking.

The Medjool dates do wonders to bring everything together, but having made these brownies twice, here are my tips:

1. Measure precisely. If you're too generous in measuring the nuts, the brownies won't stick together (I made this mistake last time, but Todd and I still managed to consume the entire pan nearly instantaneously. They'll still come out tasty, just less presentable).

2. Ground the walnuts into a paste - let that food processor work!

3. Double the recipe (ok, I haven't actually done this, but I'm going to do it next time since my brownies came out thinner than I like).

P.S. Have you ever heard that your pasta water won't boil over if you lay a wooden spoon across the top of it?  Well, it doesn't work. Please use that information as you see fit.

Raw Brownies
A Couple Cooks

1 cup walnuts (unsalted)
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt or sea salt
1 1/4 cups Medjool dates (about 12)
1/4 cup almonds (unsalted)

Remove the pits from the dates. If the 1/4 cup almonds are not already chopped, place them in a bag and hit them with the back of a spoon to break them into pieces (we’ve found this is easier than chopping).

In the bowl of a food processor, place 1 cup walnuts. Process on high until the nuts are finely ground.

Add 1/2 cup cocoa powder and 1/8 teaspoon kosher or sea salt. Pulse to combine.

Turn on the food processor. As the processor is running, add the dates one at a time. Once all the dates have been added, the mixture should be crumbly but easily formable (it may form into a ball depending on how long you process it). Throw in the almonds and pulse a couple times to combine (if a ball has formed, you can also mix in the almonds in a bowl).

Form the brownies: Line a small square dish with wax paper and press into the desired thickness (don’t worry if it does not fill the entire pan; the brownies are easy to shape). Alternatively, press the brownies into a mini-muffin tin or other mold. Place in the refrigerator or freezer for 5 to 10 minutes to firm up; they can easily be cut when cold.

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