Ok, it is the start of a brand new year, possibly the last year of our existence as we know it according to the Maya, but the Maya didn't have Fudgy Brownie Bites. Maybe had they tasted these little bits of ecstasy, they would have had a more positive outlook for mankind. After all, who can be brooding and morose while eating fudgy chocolate?
Seriously though, I came up with this recipe on an intense, and I do mean INTENSE, new year induced diet. Diet? Did I just write that. Yep. I did. You see I have this chocolate love affair. I simply must have it. So, instead of depriving myself of something I love so much, I cut these brownies into "brownie bites." These tiny little mmmmmmmm, alright you get my drift...I can have one or two of these a day and fulfill my lust for chocolate and still lose weight. Take that metabolism! These are easy to make, you don't even need to pull out the Kitchenaid or plug in your hand mixer, you just need a wooden spoon, (or if all you have is a fork...I won't tell..our little secret) and some arm muscle. Ooh, ooh.... don't forget to give them a nice little dusting of powdered sugar if you have any on hand. It makes them SO pretty! Bake these!
Fudgy Brownie Bites
10 tablespoons (1 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter
1 1/4 cups sugar
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder (unsweetened or Dutch-process)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 cold large eggs
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
2/3 cup walnut or pecan pieces (optional- I HATE nuts in my chocolate, I prefer to leave these out.)
1tbsp powdered sugar
Position a rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat the oven to 325°F. Line the bottom and sides of the baking pan ( USE A 9x9 SQUARE BAKING PAN, I USE A GLASS PYREX) with parchment paper or foil, (I use foil) leaving an overhang on two opposite sides.
Combine the butter, sugar, cocoa, and salt in a medium heatproof bowl and set the bowl on top of a medium sized pot of barely simmering water.
OK....Let's stop here for a moment. This takes some explaining. You can do it this way, and this is the way that I do it, it is called using a "double boiler." It is super easy. You just put 2-3 cups of water in a medium pot and boil it, then turn it down to a simmer and place your mixing bowl with the butter THAT HAS BEEN SLICED INTO SLICES, cocoa and sugar, on top of the pot. The heat from the steam will melt the butter while you stir it constantly. OR..you can melt the butter in the microwave and pour it into the cocoa and sugar pre-melted. You pick! Back to the directions.
Stir from time to time until the butter is melted and the mixture is smooth and hot enough that you want to remove your finger fairly quickly after dipping it in to test. Remove the bowl from the pot and set aside briefly until the mixture is only warm, not hot.
Stir in the vanilla with a wooden spoon. Add the eggs one at a time, stirring vigorously after each one. When the batter looks thick, shiny, and well blended, add the flour a little bit at a time and stir until you cannot see it any longer, then beat vigorously for 40 strokes with the wooden spoon (arm strength (; ) Stir in the nuts, if using. Spread evenly in the lined pan.
Bake until a toothpick plunged into the center emerges slightly moist with batter, 30 to 35 minutes. Let cool completely.
Lift up the ends of the parchment or foil liner, and transfer the brownies to a cutting board. Cut into bite-size pieces and sprinkle powdered sugar over them.