Happy Valentine’s Day!! Hailey here, after a long hiatus from the blogosphere. Business school has turned out to mean much more work than I anticipated, but with the internship recruiting season behind me, I am excited to have more time to blog. This is officially my first post since the beginning of fall semester, and I have to say I’ve really missed it! The longer I live in New York the more I feel that I am conforming to the NYC lifestyle which involves minimal cooking and lots of eating out, so I am going to make a conscious effort to reduce these bad habits.
Last night one of my girlfriends hosted a “Gal-entines Day” dinner to celebrate love among friends. She cooked a fabulous meal, we drank wine, we watched Justin Bieber music videos…ok maybe I shouldn’t admit some of these things. But I was really excited to try out a Valentine’s Day Cake Truffle recipe that I sort of made up, but took inspiration from cake pops. I really don’t like cake pops very much — they are adorable but always taste way too sweet and dense. I started this recipe with my favorite white cake batter, but cut the sugar in half since I knew I wanted white chocolate on the outside. I also improvised a white buttercream frosting to condense the cake truffles a little bit and help them stick, but also added much less powdered sugar than typical icing.
As a kid, I had a love-hate relationship with Valentine’s Day. I loved the over-sized chocolate kisses. I hated candy grams. I loved the frilly cards and hot pink balloons. I hated candy grams. I even loved those chalk-like candy hearts. I really hated candy grams. For the couple weeks leading up to the “big day,” my school would go all out, selling these obnoxious grams for you to send to your friends, kiddie crushes, etc., that they would then deliver to you while in class. These two weeks came to be some of the most stressful weeks in my young eight-year-old life. What if I was the only one who didn’t receive a gram? Not that I should have ever been worried as my mom always made sure to buy a few, some signed from “Mom with love” and others signed “from a Secret Admire” with suspiciously similar handwriting to good ‘ole Mom. My dear mom kept up this tradition long past the time I got over my disdain for grams.
I hope you enjoy this delicious dark chocolate-raspberry brownie that we (pardon my “cheese”) made with love.
Dark Chocolate-Raspberry Brownies (slightly adapted from the Smitten Kitchen)
10 Tbsp. Organic Unsalted Butter, at room temperature
¾ Cup and 2 Tbsp. of Cocoa Powder
1 1/4 Cup of Sugar
¼ Tsp. Salt
½ Tsp. Vanilla
2 Organic Eggs, cold
½ Cup Flour
½ Cup Dark Chocolate Chips
1 Case of Fresh Organic Raspberries
In a medium-sized saucepan, heat butter, cocoa, sugar and salt until the mixture starts to slightly simmer. If you want to speed up the process (or forgot to leave the butter at room temperature like we did), microwave the butter in 30 second intervals until almost completely melted. This will help blend the mixture more easily and quickly. Once the cocoa mixture is completely incorporated, remove from heat and let cool slightly.
Once the mixture is lukewarm, add vanilla and one egg at a time, stirring briskly after each egg. It’s important to make sure that the mixture isn’t too hot and that you don’t stir in the eggs too slowly, as you might end up with a chocolate egg scramble (yum?). After fully incorporated, stir in flour completely. Mix in half of the chocolate chips and spread evenly into your 8 x 8 pan. Top the wet mixture with the rest of the dark chocolate and fresh raspberries. Bake for approximately 25 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out slightly fudgy. Remove from the oven, cool, cut and enjoy!
Makes 16 brownies.
*Note: The moisture from the raspberries may add extra baking time to the brownies. Check by inserting a toothpick in several spots on the brownie and cooking in extra 3-5 minute intervals.