If there’s one thing I’m known for at work, it’s not for my inability to carry on an intelligent conversation before 9 am, or for my uncanny knack to memorize all the key strokes in Illustrator and InDesign, or for working chaotically on 5 projects simultaneously. No. I’m best known for Christmas in a Bowl. She makes her annual appearance at my work Christmas party. Her birth name is Triple Chocolate Peppermint Trifle. But after one bite, a coworker renamed her Christmas in a Bowl. Rightly so. With layers of white chocolate peppermint mousse topped with fudgy brownies and dark chocolate pudding she tastes like Christmas. She’s rich and dense, however, not the prettiest thing you ever did see. But don’t judge her book by the cover. You wont be able to put her down. And when you’re done, you’ll wish there was more. Read more

I make one brownie recipe. It’s from the Martha Stewart’s Baking Handbook. It’s so good, I haven’t felt the need to try any other recipes out there. These brownies make an appearance in the annual Christmas in a Bowl. They are fudge-y as opposed to cake-y. They are dark chocolate as opposed to milk chocolate. They are salty as opposed to sweet. Ha! Just kidding. However, they do have a hint of kosher salt that makes them taste all the more sweeter. (Did you know that adding salt not only compliments but brings out the sweetness? It’s my favorite ingredient in baking.)

Go ahead. Give it a try. It may end your brownie search. Did I mention, they are super easy to make? One bowl? Quick clean-up. Are you convinced now?

One Bowl Fudgy Brownies

Yields 16 brownies     adjust servings

Recipe lightly adapted from Martha Stewart's Baking Handbook.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 c. (1 stick) unsalted butter, diced
  • 1 c. (8 oz.) coarsely chopped bittersweet chocolate
  • 1 1/2 c. sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 3/4 c. all-purpose
  • 3/4 tsp. kosher salt

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line an 8-inch square baking pan with parchment paper by using 2 sheets of parchment paper, setting them perpendicular to one another in the pan. Set aside.

Add butter and chocolate in a double boiler set over a saucepan with simmering water. The water shouldn't touch the base of the double boiler. Whisk frequently until chocolate and butter are melted, about 7 minutes. Remove bowl from heat, and whisk in sugar until combined and cooled. Then whisk in eggs one at a time until incorporated. Whisk in vanilla. Gently fold in flour and salt with a spatula until just combined.

Pour batter into the prepared pan, and smooth top with the spatula. Bake until center is firm, about 40 to 45 minutes. These will be fudgey!

Using parchment, lift brownies out of pan and onto a wire rack to cool completely, at least 1 hour. Once cooled, store covered in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

Notes

• Let the brownies cool for well over an hour—I'd recommend 3 hours. They are really hard to cut right out of the oven because they are so gooey. Be patient. You will be rewarded.  
• You may have to rinse your knife clean midway through cutting. This will make cutting the other half easier. The yummy brownie goo on the knife can make cutting difficult.
• Looking for more chocolate? Add 1/4 c. semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips into batter. Don't melt. 
• Use the best you can find or afford. 
• Wondering why they are so gooey? There is no leavener in this recipe, i.e. baking powder or baking soda. That's the difference between a cake-y brownie and a fudge-y brownie.