Caramel & Dark Chocolate Brownies
There is a huge selection of chocolates on your local market’s baking shelf. How to decide what to use? Since manufacturers use the terms bittersweet and semi-sweet interchangeably, the choice is going to be up to you. It’s about taste. Bittersweet has more of a dark chocolate flavor; semi-sweet has less chocolate flavor and more sugar. If you like your chocolate with a darker flavor, use one that is labeled bittersweet, with cacao solids ranging anywhere between 52% and 72%.
I used what I had in my pantry: semi-sweet mini-chips in the base; and a bar of Godiva dark chocolate (72% cacao) and Ghiradelli Bittersweet chocolate bars (60% cacao) for the top. When melted together, it could have tasted divine on old boot soles.
This recipe was adapted from http://www.errenskitchen.com/
For the base:
1 cup all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon each: salt, baking powder, baking soda
1 stick butter, softened
¾ cups packed light brown sugar
4 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup bittersweet chocolate chips
For the caramel:
½ cup sugar
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1 stick butter
1 tablespoon whipping cream
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
For the Topping:
12 ounces premium dark chocolate, chopped
For the base:
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Grease a 9-inch square baking pan
- In a large bowl or stand mixer, mix the flour, salt, baking soda, and baking powder
- Add the butter and both sugars into the flour and beat until fluffy. Add eggs one at a time; add vanilla.
- Fold in the chocolate chips.
- Spread the batter into the prepared pan; using a spatula, smooth the top. Bake 25 minutes. Cool.
For the luxurious caramel:
- Combine in a medium saucepan, the sugar and syrup. Cook on medium high heat, stirring constantly, until it becomes caramel colored. Avoid letting the syrup boil before the sugar is fully dissolved. When the signs of darkening appear, remove from the heat; stir in the butter, salt, and whipping cream. Add the vanilla.
- Set aside to cool slightly. If it cools too much, it will be near impossible to spoon and spread over the cooled brownies. Use a spatula to spread evenly. Allow to cool completely.
For the chocolate topping:
- Put the chopped chocolate in a metal or glass bowl over a saucepan of simmering water to create a double-boiler. Stir occasionally with a rubber spatula, making sure no water gets in to the melting chocolate which would cause the chocolate to stiffen.
- Pour the melted chocolate over the caramel; set aside until the chocolate has cooled completely.
- Cut into squares.