[A spalsh on the window of dreams - Fudgy cocoa brownies]

cocoa brownies bitten

Those brownies saved me from the many damages of sleepless nights. You see, I’m that kind of people who wakes up in one go – 4am, 8 am, or 11am… it feels the same to me.
And once that I’m awake, it will take hours to find my sleep – not to mention, lovely dreams filled with acorns and pastries – back.

This hadn’t been a problem in my life so far.

But as Guillaume woke me up forty five minutes before our 7:36am alarm for the eleventh day in a row with half-closed eyes, a giant smile on his face, and only one word to be said: brownies (or more accurately: J’ai envie de brownies), it sort of became one.

cocoa brownies cake stand

A quick look into the prospects of such a situation rushed me to the kitchen.

And here I was, stirring a mixture of butter, cocoa and sugar over a bain-marie at 6:49am; into which I, later, mixed in eggs and flour.

cocoa brownies batter

Once my oven was doing what it’s best at, I sat on the counter and looked through the window while sipping a green tea latte.

Seconds later, the barely perceptible blue morning sky grew into a dark grey cloud, and drops of water started hitting the glass.

cocoa brownies

At that exact moment, it felt like le monde appartient à ceux qui se lèvent tôt [literally, the world belongs to those who rise early].

By 7:17am, the dark-brown appareil had turned into the fugdiest brownies I’ve ever made and filled our flat with a toasty chocolate scent.

And for the record, Guillaume even emerged from bed before the usual wake-up time just to have a couple of slices.

cocoa brownies slice

Brownies fondants au cacao
Adapted from Alice Medrich’s Bittersweet (thank you Deb).

When I had my first bite of those insanely fudgy brownies, I felt sorry I hadn’t made them back when I first spotted them on Smitten Kitchen.

At the time, I thought it would be nice to experiment but wasn’t sure the flavour would be au rendez-vous. But I was wrong. Not only the use of cocoa powder provides the brownies with an intense chocolate taste, but it also is the secret to their amazing texture (along with the high quantity of sugar that is).

A new favourite at home!

Brownies fondants au cacao

makes 16 slices

140g butter
280g caster sugar
80g cocoa powder
1/4 heaped tsp maldon sea salt
2 large eggs
65g plain flour

Preheat the oven to 160°C. Line a 25x25cm baking tin with baking paper.

Combine the butter, sugar, cocoa, and salt in a bowl and cook over a simmering bain-marie, stirring from time to time until it forms a smooth mixture and feel hot to the touch (around 50-60°C).

Set aside to cool down slightly, then mix in the eggs one at a time, using a whisk and stirring for a good minute after each one.
Fold in the flour and spread the batter evenly into the prepared tin.

Bake for 20 minutes, or until barely set. Allow to cool on a rack, then remove the brownies from the tin and slice into slices.