Are you ready?
I’m about to pull out some hyperbole. (Although it doesn’t feel like hyperbole to me; it feels like trutherbole.)
So, are you ready?
If you’re not sure, look at the photo at the top of this post. Really look at it.
Are you ready?
This Raw Brownie with Chocolate Icing might just be the best and tastiest creation to have emerged from my kitchen in 2010.
I’m really, really not joking. When I first decided to make these raw brownies, I knew they wouldn’t be horrible. After all, the individual components are delicious (dates, nuts, cocoa, honey/agave…). I wasn’t, however, entirely convinced that the sum of the parts would equal brownies.
So I whizzed and patted this raw brownie together, popped it in the freezer for an hour or so, took it out again, snapped more photos than I’d like to admit, and took a bite.
I lost consciousness.
Okay, well, I’m joking about that. I didn’t actually pass out, but I did lose track of everything else happening in my mind (you know, the usual: planning Christmas presents, deciding what shoes to wear, choosing the names for my future pet unicorns) as the pure, sweet, rich, brightly chocolatey, silky-smooth-above-firm-below, pure, sweet, rich taste of this creation sank into my awareness.
Trutherbole, hyperbole… you can’t say I didn’t warn you.
I really can’t explain how such is the case, but these raw brownies taste more like brownies than many cooked brownies I’ve eaten in my life. (Do you think I said “brownies” enough in that sentence?) It’s something about the buttery-nuttiness of the walnuts combined with the deep sweetness of the dates in the base, and something about the silkiness of the rich icing which, straight from the freezer, is never solid yet always soft and sweet… everything is perfectly balanced. And please, don’t let the avocado scare you. All it contributes is a creamy richness to the icing. (You can trust me, as I’m not the biggest fan of avocado on its own.)
I used a raw Leatherwood honey in my icing, but it you don’t do honey, feel free to use agave. I plan on using agave myself next time, and also throwing in some chilli, or perhaps cardamom…
These raw brownies would, without a doubt, have made it into my Top Ten Recipes of 2010 had I managed to post about them in time. Sometimes, though, you have to let the taste-memories percolate so that you can come up with the perfect superlatives for them later.
I implore you: try these. And then send me some.
Raw Brownies with Chocolate Icing of Pure Amazingness
Adapted from here. Makes 12.
- 1 cup (110g) walnuts
- 1 cup (150g) medjool dates, pitted
- 1/3 cup (30g) cocoa powder (raw, if that’s how you roll)
- 1 avocado
- 40ml raw leatherwood honey or agave nectar
- 30ml cocoa powder
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- dash salt
- dash cinnamon
1. Combine walnuts, dates, and the 1/3 cup of cocoa powder in a food processor and process until the mixture, according to the original recipe, “looks like potting soil”. Pat this into an 20cm x 20cm (8inch x 8inch) pan. (I actually just patted it out into a square of about the thickness I wanted in a much bigger tin. S’all good. The mixture ain’t going nowhere!)
2. With a blender or handmixer (I actually used the food processor again, which explains why there were tiny flecks of avocado in my icing at the end…), blend the avocado, honey or agave, second lot of cocoa, vanilla, salt, and cinnamon until smooth.
3. Spread the icing over the brownie base, then put in the freezer for about an hour to set. No matter how long the brownies stay in the freezer, they never become rock-hard. I think mine lasted about 4 days in the freezer? And they were just as swoon-worthy on the last day as they were on the first.
4. I want more.