Recipe: Cinnamon Caramel Brownies

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I have been on the search for the perfect brownie recipe since I began baking three years ago. I’ve tried the one my mom swore by, I’ve tried all sorts of “classics” the internet raves about, but no luck. They’re always a tad too dry, lacking in flavor, too chewy, or just missing that special brownie spark. Perhaps my standards are too high, but I could not be stopped in my search.

So I decided to try a new strategy: I had to look for something different, something unique. Something unheard of, even.

And that’s how these Mexican style brownies happened. They’re halfway between cake and brownie, with a light, almost melt-in-your-mouth kind of texture. The main thing that had me hooked, however, was the flavor combination; I even threw in some chili and cayenne for good measure, and they turned out wonderfully.

Adapted from Epicurious.

Time: Active: 15-25 minutes

Inactive: 30-40 minutes

Ingredients:

  • For Brownies
    • 4 ounces unsweetened chocolate
    • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
    • 1 1/4 cups (packed) golden brown sugar
    • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 3 large eggs
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 3/4 cup all purpose flour
    • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
    • *Optional: Ancho chili powder to taste (I’d start with no more than a pinch)
  • For Caramel Topping
    • 1 cup (packed) golden brown sugar
    • 1/4 cup whipping cream
    • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
    • 3/4 tablespoon vanilla extract
    • 1/2 cup sliced almonds
    • *Optional: Pinch of cayenne powder

Directions

For Brownies

1. Preheat oven to 325°F, and grease or line an 8″ pan with parchment paper.

2. In a large saucepan over low heat, melt the 4oz unsweetened chocolate with the butter until smooth, stirring to prevent burning. Allow to cool for 5 minutes.

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3. Stir in sugar, salt, and cinnamon, along with ancho chili powder if desired. Whisk in the eggs one at a time, followed by the vanilla. Stir until batter is smooth. Add flour and whisk in until just blended, then stir in chocolate chips.

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4. Pour batter into pan, and cook until a toothpick comes out clean, about 30-35 minutes. Make sure to check multiple spots with your toothpick, in case your first tries happen to get a melted chocolate chip stuck to it!

For Caramel Topping

5. Stir sugar, cream, and butter in a small saucepan over medium-low heat until the mixture is smooth and comes to a boil. Remove the pan from heat and mix in the vanilla. Let cool for 10 minutes, and then stir it until it thickens.

6. Spread over the brownies, and sprinkle with almond slices.

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I recommend them heated up and then paired with a scoop of vanilla ice cream–simply delicious!

Michelle

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