These are incredible.  They are very very strong in coffee flavor – made with ground espresso beans that give them great chewy/crunchy texture.  Lauren – a 10 year old exclaimed that “they taste like Starbucks.”  I love them – the icing is sweet and delicious and although the brownies are very rich, they are addictive.  I nibbled throughout the day.  And now I’m full of caffeinated energy!  (I’m writing very late for me…after watching the entire Sound Of Music with my daughter…she ate them too!)  I also made an espresso brownie ice cream by chopping the brownies into small bits and adding them to freshly churned vanilla ice cream.  So very good!  I found these brownies  in Saveur Magazine.  The article listed three different and highly regarded brownie recipes.  Since I was familiar with the first two (Nick Malgieri’s and Kate Hepburn’s) and loved both, I decided that I had to try these – developed by Krystal Stone – an assistant at Saveur.  I tweaked the recipe just a little here and there.  There are a few special pantry items that you’ll need: chocolate covered espresso beans as well as instant espresso powder – so purchase before you decide to bake.  But they are well worth a trip to the store or a visit on the Internet.  Reserve a little extra time – they are not difficult but a little more time consuming than a regular brownie.

frosted espresso brownies (adapted from Saveur Magazine):
3/4 cup medium to fine ground chocolate covered espresso beans
1/4 cup water
2 1/2 tablespoons instant espresso powder
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1/2 cup canola oil
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 eggs (beaten)
1/2 cup flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking powder

4 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup milk
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/3 cup cocoa powder
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon salt

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees and line a 8 or 9 inch square pan with tin foil.  These brownies are gooey and hard to get out of the pan – so line the pan with foil so that it comes all the way up the sides of the pan.  Once baked and cool, you can simply lift the whole big brownie out of the pan, flatten the foil, and cut as desired.  I might try them in mini muffin pans next time.  Try if you like.

Grind your espresso beans in a food processor.  Whisk together the flour, salt, and baking powder and set aside.

Bring 1/4 cup water to boil and whisk in instant espresso and dissolve.  Pour into a medium sized bowl.  Add the ground beans, sugar, brown sugar, cocoa, oil and vanilla and mix well.  Add the eggs and mix again, then add the dry ingredients and mix until just combined.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan and spread evenly and bake for about 42-50 minutes.  As usual check often and before.  Let cool for about 10-15 minutes.

In the meantime, make the icing.  Bring the butter, milk, sugars, cocoa, vanilla and salt to a boil in a small saucepan.  Continue to stir and whisk as it comes to a boil.

Pour the  icing over the warm brownie (you may not need all of it) and let set and harden.  I found it easier to let sit overnight – but dig in when you like.  This is great in a light vanilla ice cream.  I think I’ll mix it into my next batch.


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