Last week my husband and I were on our staycation. We could not go away anywhere (sigh) so instead we stayed home and escaped through food. I relied heavily on tried-and-true recipes that we have been indulging in for a long time. This helped us time travel back to happier days.
When I lived on Vancouver Island I made my version of Anna Olson’s Walnut Chocolate Brownies for a trip out past the Sooke area. We drove out there with our friends Mike and Jen and had dinner at a restaurant, I think the place was called Breakers? We had the best burgers in the world, the first time I had had bison meat. The restaurant stared out into the ocean on a warm and sunny day as we ate and laughed together. One our way home I got out my container of brownies. Moisty, dense, chewy with a hint of orange, they were the perfect way to end the perfect day.
So I tried making them again, exactly like I did on the island. I omitted the walnuts and after combining the melted butter into the cocoa, I added orange zest and extract. Then I stirred in the sugar, eggs and vanilla. In another bowl I put together the flour, baking powder and salt.
Then I combined the two very quickly and put it in a baking dish:
The measurements for the pan were strange, 8″ x 11″. I really thought I had put them in a square tin but figured I should follow the directions just in case. Mistake! They were kind of dry and even crunchy! Who ever heard of crunchy brownies???!!!
What is the remedy to something dry? A sauce! I created a hot chocolate ganache sauce by heating up some whipping cream and before it gets too hot, adding in the same amount of chocolate chips.
Crazy-decadent but quite an ingenious save if I do say to myself! Still, even with the chocolate sauce, it still was not right. As much as I want food to take me back to better days, sometimes you can not capture the same magic in a different kitchen, on a different coast. I think it is time to focus on new recipes and find new foodie treasures.
As much as I love the food from the past, is it the food I have not yet made that intrigues me. I have no idea what I will bake next, what could be more exciting?
Oh my those do look good. I’ve been there with the crunchy brownies before, choc sauce is the perfect answer.
Debra She Who Seeks says
Yes, onwards and upwards!
Maybe a little crunchy, but what a great save with that amazing looking chocolate sauce. I’d throw on a scoop of vanilla ice cream as well:)
Sarah @ Mum In Bloom says
Good for you for not giving up. Poor girl. Give this recipe for Chocolate Pudding Cake a try. Seriously, it bakes with the pudding in it.
That is the kind of brownie that I could dive into. Looks delicious.
Do you know of a good sugar cookie recipe..i’ve made two batches of it so far. They keep getting better.something about is off. I have no idea why.
Suzie Ridler says
Thank you all so much! And Shell, this is my family’s sugar cookie recipe. Check it out and compare with yours. Let me know how they’re different and we can figure something out OK? Hugs!
oh my gosh those look absolutely amazing!
The ganache looks so good on top of that brownie. Sorry it came out crunchy. Looks like you found a very formidable solution.