snow day. amy chaplin's brownies.

So, the snowpocolypse didn't really materialize here in NYC. I am a little disappointed. I was hoping for a record to breaking storm to rival the Blizzard of 1888. I love quiet unexpected days off.  in our house on these days, there is generally something bubbling on the stove and the house is warm and cozy. Everyone sleeps in and the city wakes up  so slowly. I haven't heard one horn today which for Broome street is a minor miracle.

Mid way through my editing today, I decided to take a break to bake something. I picked up Amy Chaplin's book At Home in the Whole Food Kitchen and flipped to the sweets. A couple weeks ago my friend Nancy snuck a few of Amy's vegan chocolate apricot almond cookies into the movies.They were pure heaven. So, I and no doubt that I would find something delicious to make from her book. I am a brownie maker since way way back It was one of the first things I was allowed  to make on my own. Page 444 of the Fannie Farmer Cookbook was thoroughly smeared with chocolate and butter and the fingerprints of four children.

These are not your mother's brownies. They are rich and soft and decadent with dark chocolate, maple, almond butter, dates and seas salt. They happen to be gluten and dairy free.

Make them today or tonight or tomorrow, just make them soon. You won't regret it!

ALMOND BUTTER BROWNIES WITH SEA SALT

Toasted almonds, dark chocolate flakey sea salt are a divine combination . When you are in the mood for a rich chocolaty treat, these brownies really hit the spot.

 

MAKES FIFTEEN 3x2 1/2 INCH BROWNIES

EQUIPTMENT: 13x9 INCH PAN (ALSO KNOWN AS A QUARTER SHEET PAN)

 

1/2 cup packed pitted deglet moor dates (you can use medjool dates if you prefer, and if they are super moist and soft, you can skip the soaking step

1 1/2 cups whole spelt flower

3/4 cup of unsweetened cocoa powder

1 1/2 teaspoons aluminum-free baking powder

1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons of almond butter

3/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil plus more to oil pan

3/4 cup of maple syrup

3/4 cup of maple sugar (I did not have this so I used organic cane sugar)

1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons almond milk

1/2 teaspoon of sea salt

1 tablespoon of vanilla extract

3 1/2 ounces of dark (85%) chocolate. coarsely chopped and decided. or about 3/4 cup chocolate chips

1/2 cup of toasted almonds (I used raw)

Maldon or fleur de sel or other flakey sea salt

 

Place dates in a medium bowl and cover with boiling water. let soak for 20 minutes or until softened then drain well

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line pan with parchment paper: brush paper and sides of pan lightly with oil and set aside

sift flour, cocoa powder, and baking powder, into a medium bowl; whisk toto combine and set aside.

Place almond butter, olive oil, maple syrup, almond milk, salt, vanilla, and drained dates in  food processor: blend until smooth. (it's ok. if all the dates are not blended). Pour into sifted flour mixture and stir with a rubber spatula until  almost combined. Reserve 2 tablespoons of chopped chocolate and stir remaining chocolate into batter. Be careful not to over mix. Transfer batter into prepared pan and spread evenly. Sprinkle with almonds, remaining chocolate and a large pinch of Malden or fleur de sel sea salt. 

Bake for 30 minutes or until edges pull away from the sides of the pan and a toothpick , inserted into the center, comes out clean. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely. (FOR BEST RESULTS, REFRIGERATE UNTIL COMPLETELY COLD UNTIL CUTTING.) This will help to hold the brownies together. These brownies will store for three of four day in an air tight container.

 

recipe copyright amy chaplin