I sometimes find it hard to believe that we actually live in America now. Sometimes my accent slips and I find myself speaking like an American without even thinking. The other day I had to look twice at the word colour, as I felt the ‘u’ looked like it didn’t belong there. I guess you could say that I am settling in. I have come to love that big white mountain (mount Rainer) that lingers in the distance everywhere we go. I am getting to know where I am going, and don’t always have to rely on the Sat Nav to guide me. There are still days when I feel like stranger, but then there are others when I feel like this is my home. It will be our first 4th of July in America today, and we are going to a friends house to celebrate. Brownies are the most American dessert I know, so I thought I would make some brownies to bring along to watch the fireworks. These brownies are extra special with salty caramel and toasted pecans on top. I used the same basic brownie recipe that I used for my festive brownies. They are gooey, salty, sweet and nutty….I think they might just be the best brownies I’ve made yet.
- 125g of butter / 9 tablespoons of butter
- 200g / 1 and 1/4 cups of soft brown sugar
- 125g / 5 oz of milk chocolate
- 50g / 1/2 a cup of all purpose flour / gluten free flour
- 1/4 teaspoon of baking powder
- 35g / 1/4 cup of cocoa
- 3 eggs, lightly beaten
- 100g / ½ cup of sugar
- 2 tablespoons of water
- Pinch of salt
- 40ml of cream
- ½ tsp of vanilla extract
- 100g / 1 cup of pecans, chopped roughly and lightly toasted
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit/ 180 degrees Celsius. Grease a 9 inch square tin. Place the butter and the soft brown sugar in a large heavy bottomed saucepan over a medium heat. Stir together and heat slowly until all the sugar has dissolved. Place the chocolate in a glass bowl over a saucepan of boiling water, on a medium heat. Once the chocolate has melted, add it to the dissolved sugar and butter. Stir together until combined. Take off the heat and allow to cool for a few minutes.
Sieve the flour, cocoa and baking powder into a large bowl. Mix together the flour, cooled chocolate and beaten egg. Stir with a wooden spoon, until well combined. Pour the mixture into the prepared tin and cook for 25-35 minutes. If you prefer a firmer brownie, you can leave them in a little longer. Allow to cool.
Meanwhile to make the caramel, place the sugar, water and salt in a heavy bottomed saucepan, over a low to medium heat. Cook until the sugar dissolves and then turn up the heat allow it bubble and boil. Don’t stir it, but swirl the pot gently to ensure it caramelizes evenly. Take the pot off the heat when the sugar syrups turns a rich golden caramel colour. Once off the heat, add the cream and vanilla. It will start to bubble and spit, you can now stir it with a rubber spatula. Then, add the toasted pecans and stir to combine. Finally pour the pecan caramel evenly over the top of the brownies. Allow to cool. Once cool, place in the fridge to chill. Slice the brownies as soon as they are cold.