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Browned Butter Brownies with Walnuts

I’ve never been good at brownies.  Sure, I can make some mean Mississippi Mud Brownies, Peanut Butter Fudge Brownies, and Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Topped Brownies, but I’ve never had luck with plain, old fashioned brownies.  Until now.  

You might recognize these from the cover of the February issue of Bon Appetit.  I didn’t think anything of them until my mom send me a little care package that included, among other things, a plastic baggie with 4 of these brownies in them.  While my thighs would say differently, four of them was not enough.  I needed to make more.  

If you’re looking for a quick but “oh-my-gawd” brownie, this is it.  They are shiny on top, fudgy in the middle, and have a nice little crunch from the walnuts.  Plus the brown butter deepens the flavor with its nuttiness, and will have people wondering how such a simple brownie can be so darn good.  

Browned Butter Brownies with Walnuts
from bon appetit, February 2011
makes 16 brownies

10 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 1/4 cups sugar
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, spooned into cup to measure and leveled
2 tsp water
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp salt
2 large eggs, chilled
1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon all purpose flour
1 cup walnuts pieces, toasted


Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.  Line 8×8″ baking dish with foil, pressing the foil firmly against pan sides and leaving 2″ overhang.  Spray foil with nonstick cooking spray.  

In medium saucepan, melt butter over medium heat.  Continue cooking until butter stops foaming and browned buts form at bottom of pan and butter turns golden color, stirring often.  You will begin to smell a nutty smell.  This will take about 7-10 minutes.  Remove from heat. 

Immediately add sugar, cocoa, water, vanilla, and salt.  Stir to blend.  Let cool for 5 minutes.  

Add eggs to mixture one at a time, beating vigorously after each addition.  When mixture looks thick and shiny, add flour and stir until blended.  Beat vigorously for 60 strokes.  Seriously, count the 60 strokes or else.  Stir in nuts.  Pour batter into prepared pan.

Bake in prepared oven until toothpick inserted into center comes out almost clean, about 25 minutes.  Cool in pan on rack.  When cooled, lift foil overhang from pan and cut into squares.  Enjoy!  

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  1. Plain brownies??? I think not!!! These look scrumptious – kinda impressed that Bon Appetit printed a recipe for a good old fashioned chocolate treat! I’m giving them a try this weekend b/c I’m not too thrilled with the recipe I last used… Thanx for sharing!