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Miles of Chocolate Clone Recipe #1

by on July 14, 2006 · 37 comments

The Miles of Chocolate cloning experiment is coming along nicely.I haven’t quite got an exact clone, but I have one that is *almost* the same.I’ve only made this particular batch once and need to re-do it a few times to feel confident, but I think I’m close.If anything, I’ve got a really good brownie. First off, here’s a photo of a real package of Miles of Chocolate.Yes, I gave in and bought one.

Here’s what it (Miles) looks like without the packaging.

Miles says that the recipe is an old one which he received about 25 years ago.He also quotes Julia Child on his web site.I don’t think it’s a coincidence that the ingredients in Julia’s brownies are nearly identical to those in Miles of Chocolate.Keeping in mind that ingredient lists always start with the ingredient the recipe uses the most of.Miles of Chocolate has the following:

Sugar
Butter
Eggs
Chocolate
Flour
Liquor (which I’ve since learned is not alcohol, but rather pure chocolate in its liquid form)
Vanilla Extract
Salt

(note: Miles’s label is slighlty different than the grocery store’s label. The grocery store’s is listed in the order above with liquor. Mile’s label list eggs before butter and does not list liquor. In my clone version, the weight of the eggs is the same as the butter so it’s probably inconsequential)

If you were to weigh all the ingredients in Julia’s brownies, you’d list sugar first, butter second, eggs and so forth…

So minus the liquor, these are the same ingredients in Julia’s brownies.My guess is that Mile’s recipe is based on Julia’s, but with less flour to make them more truffle-like.He lists “chocolate” in the ingredients and doesn’t specify “semi-sweet” or “unsweetened” so I’m thinking he uses unsweetened and that is what I used for my clone.Now I could be wrong and maybe it’s the chocolate that is throwing me off.

Here’s a picture of mine and the one made by miles. Mine is on the left. It has a deeper chocolate flavor.Miles’s is slightly milder and has a crusty top which crackles up a bit in your mouth and tastes like egg yolks (in a good way).

I’ve been making my test batches in a 9×5 (or whatever the standard size is) metal loaf pan.For accuracy, you might want to use the same pan size for now as I am.When we get this crusty thing going, we’ll increase our pan size.
Note: I used salted butter for my clone. I know, I know. Unsalted is better. Slap my wrist, but that’s what I had; If you use unsalted, increase your salt to about 1/4 teaspoon or a more generous pinch than 1/8 teaspoon.

Miles of Chocolate Clone #1 - A tester batch

1/2 cup all-purpose flour, measure carefully
1/8 teaspoon salt
4 ounces butter (I used salted)
3 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tablespoon Kahlua (optional and definitely not in Miles’s)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
2 large eggs

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Line a 9×5 inch baking pan with parchment paper.

Stir together the flour and salt and set aside.

In a heavy saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. When butter starts to melt and coats pan bottom, add unsweetened chocolate and reduce heat to low.  Stir constantly until chocolate is melted.  Add 1/2 cup of the sugar to melted chocolate and stir over low heat for about 40 seconds.  Remove chocolate mixture from heat and let cool for about 5 minutes. Stir in Kahlua (if using) and vanilla.

Meanwhile, in bowl of a stand mixer, beat eggs for 2 minute or until foamy and light. Add remaining 1/2 cup of sugar to eggs and continue beating for another minute. Using a rubber spatula, fold about 1/3 cup of the egg mixture into the warm chocolate mixture to lighten chocolate.  Next, fold the lightened chocolate into the bowl with the egg mixture.  Stir in the flour/salt mixture, being careful not to over-mix. Over -mixing toughens up brownies. Pour into pan and bake for 28 minutes or until top is set and brownies start to smell good.

Let cool completely.  Transfer to refrigerator and chill for a few hours or overnight. Lift from pan and cut.

 

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Published on July 14, 2006

{ 37 comments… read them below or add one }

jodi July 14, 2006 at 1:08 pm

Hrm, I get that crust on my brownies by overcreaming the butter and sugar, and further overbeating when adding the eggs and the chocolate (overbeating every step before the flour goes in). Despite the extra air added during the overcreaming, the brownies still manage to stay dense, save for that airy, crackly crust on top.

Ms. Chevious July 14, 2006 at 5:00 pm

I seem to get the crispy top when I tap the hell out of the pan before putting it in the oven. Pushes the air bubbles closer to the top so the brownies are denser, the top is cracklier. Works for me at least.

Lis July 15, 2006 at 7:00 am

Well regardless if yours are still off a titch from Miles’ they look scrumptious and if yours and Miles’ were put in front of me, I’d surely snatch up yours first.. the deep dark chocolate look to it is much more appealing (to me) than the crusty top on his. Thanks for sharing your experiment! =)

Anna July 15, 2006 at 9:04 pm

Anonymous, that is an absolutely brilliant idea. I’m going to have to give that a try. I tried folding beaten egg whites into the batter today just for grins. Ruined everything. The egg wash idea is great.

Anonymous July 15, 2006 at 8:57 pm

Couldn’t you use an egg wash to get that crust? If you used egg whites and a little water, and beat it till it was a bit stiff (but not meringue), it’d probably create the desired result. Although your taste comment might mean the whole egg was used in the wash.This would help seal in moisture, too.

AustinGirl427 October 3, 2007 at 7:29 am

I made this recipe last weekend. Incredibly easy to make. I also bought Miles of Chocolate at a local grocery store. I compared the two and my friends couldn’t tell the difference. This recipe is dead on!

Anna October 3, 2007 at 7:37 am

AustinGirl, as I told you in your email, thanks for putting these to the test.

I guess now we’ll have to have to branch out and double the recipe.

Heidi October 18, 2007 at 7:31 am

I adjusted the recipe slightly. It took a few tries to get it just right. I think the proportions are nearly perfect, it’s just the method that needs adjustment. I ditched my mixer and instead put the sugar into my food processor for a good 2 minutes so that it was much finer. I took half our for the chocolate and butter mixture and left the other half in the food processor. I put the eggs into the food processor for about a minute. I increased the kahlua to a tablespoon. The result was a nearly perfect replica, including the crispy top.

Anna October 18, 2007 at 8:09 am

Heidi, that’s a brilliant idea. I’m going to try it. And for those who don’t have a food processor, there’s always the option of buying the “superfine” sugar. That is, the quick dissolving type used in drinks.

Here’s my re-tooling which includes your method or using the fine sugar. We could also probably adjust the salt levels and use unsalted butter. For this test, I’m going to just use salted again.

I also cut out the step of mixing the flour and salt. It’s not necessary.

Miles of Chocolate Clone #2 – A tester batch (Heidi)

1 cup granulated sugar
4 ounces butter (regular salted for test)
3 ounces unsweetened chocolate, cut up
1 tablespoon Kahlua
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
2 large eggs
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup all purpose flour

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 9×5 inch baking pan with parchment paper or Release foil. I think Release would be easier to deal with.

Place sugar in food processor and process for about 2 minutes so that it is very fine.

In a heavy saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. When butter starts to melt and coats pan bottom, add unsweetened chocolate and reduce heat to low. Stir constantly until chocolate is melted. Add 1/2 cup of the processed sugar to melted chocolate and stir over low heat for about 40 seconds to dissolve sugar. Remove chocolate mixture from heat and let cool for about 5 minutes. Stir in Kahlua and vanilla.

Add eggs and salt to food processor and process eggs and salt with the sugar you’ve left behind in the processor.

Using a rubber spatula, fold a small amount (about 1/3 cup) of the egg mixture into the warm chocolate mixture to lighten chocolate. Fold in rest of the egg/sugar mixtutre. Stir in the flour, being careful not to over-mix. Over -mixing toughens up brownies.

Pour into pan and bake for 28 minutes or until top is set and brownies start to smell. Let cool completely. Transfer to refrigerator and chill for a few hours or overnight. Lift from pan and cut.

Heidi October 18, 2007 at 3:21 pm

I was having trouble with the sugar dissolving in the chocolate properly and combining with the eggs before they were over-whipped, I found the fine sugar worked much better. I believe its the bigger bubbles in the less-whipped eggs that cause the crusty top. Also I found that it’s very important to make sure that you have a balance between over mixing and making sure there are absolutely no clumps of flour. There is so little non-fat moisture in the batter that if there are any clumps of flour at all they will not be absorbed into the batter while baking as if it were a shortbread type recipe. As I was making this last batch with the fine sugar I toyed with the idea of going with a cake flour instead of all purpose so that gluten would be less of an issue, but I didn’t find the batch to be affected at all by a little extra mixing to make sure the clumps were all gone. I did make sure to add the flour only a little at a time and stir in very gently.

On a side note, if you add 1/2 cup of whipping cream or heavy cream to the butter and chocolate and whip it with a wisk until smooth, and beat the eggs to nearly soft peaks before you combine the two and then add the flour you get the most delicious light more cake-like version of the ‘brownies’. My husband said he prefers them to the miles of chocolate, but I wouldn’t go that far!

Anna October 18, 2007 at 4:59 pm

Heidi, I made them your way and they were great. I guess using the super fine or processed sugar rids us of the need to beat the sugar and butter (dissolving through friction) and lets us get away with dissolving some of it with heat and barely beating the eggs. Maybe. I’m not really sure! But I liked the end result. And I do think people without a food processor could get a crusty Miles of Chocolate top by using the super-fine quick dissolving sugar.

Oh, I also rapped the pan to bring any extra air to the top.

Below is how I made these today. Next batch is going to have to be doubled!

Miles of Chocolate Clone #2 – A tester batch (Heidi)

1 cup granulated sugar
4 ounces butter (regular salted for test)
3 ounces unsweetened chocolate, cut up
1 tablespoon Kahlua
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
2 large eggs
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup all purpose flour

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 9×5 inch baking pan with parchment paper or Release foil. I think Release would be easier to deal with.

Place sugar in food processor and process for about 2 minutes so that it is very fine.

In a heavy saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. When butter starts to melt and coats pan bottom, add unsweetened chocolate and reduce heat to low. Stir constantly until chocolate is melted. Add 1/2 cup of the processed sugar to melted chocolate and stir over low heat for about 40 seconds to dissolve sugar. Remove chocolate mixture from heat and let cool for about 5 minutes. Stir in Kahlua and vanilla.

Add eggs and salt to food processor and process eggs and salt with the sugar you’ve left behind in the processor.

Stir the egg mixture into the warm chocolate. Stir in the flour, being careful not to over-mix.

Pour into pan and rap pan on the counter to bring any air bubbles to the top. Bake for 28 minutes or until top is set and brownies start to smell. Let cool completely. Transfer to refrigerator and chill for a few hours or overnight. Lift from pan and cut.

Melane October 28, 2007 at 7:19 pm

Thanks for sharing your recipe! We are trying to eat all organic, so I am going to try your recipe with all organic ingredients for Thanksgiving.

Bash May 7, 2008 at 9:13 am

I am not getting the crispy top at all. I think I must be doing something wrong with the eggs. How fluffy are they supposed to be when beaten with the sigar? Mine were liquidy and stirred into the choc, no need to fold.

(Actually, the top isn’t what I love about MoC and I eat it off the top and then eat the gooey parts. But it does add to the visual appeal of the brownies.)

I melted the choc and butter in the nuker. Can’t imagine that would make a difference… but in the interest of full disclosure, that’s the other thing I did not according to the recipe.

Thanks for developing this. I love MoC — it’s almost the perfection of a brownie — but they are too sweet for perfect perfection, so I wanted to make my own and cut the sugar (after I get them right).

Anna May 7, 2008 at 11:14 am

Hi Bash,

Thanks for trying to clone! I need to work on it some more. The last time I tried to double this recipe and it didn’t work so well, so I’m going to stick with the loaf pan. I also did it in the food processor (as written in the comment above) and didn’t get as good results.

So I think the beating of the eggs and sugar is very important and that the eggs should probably be beaten with the sugar for AT LEAST 2 minutes. I really need to play around with this some more. I’ve gotten kind of spoiled because my grocery store down the street sells Miles of Chocolate and I just buy it….though it is expensive.

Bash May 8, 2008 at 8:14 pm

It’s easy to buy MoC, but expensive. Veeery expensive. I have some in my fridge right now, hee hee!

I tried again and whipped the eggs in the processor for a full 45 seconds by the clock. The top is crispy but very thin, and not crackly or light like MoC.

But I also used only 3/4 c of sugar and mmm, much better sweetness level. It could still be less sweet and be delicious, though. Also baked using a small square Pyrex pan, roughly 6.25×6.25; the sides are slightly curved. And used unsalted butter and 1/4 tsp of salt. I would back off on the salt a bit next time but it’s not bad; 1/8 tsp wouldn’t be enough.

It’s not truffley enough. It’s still too much like cake. I even left the middle very not-quite-baked and now it goes from cake-ish at the edges to underdone-brownie in the middle, without ever hitting that moist truffle that is MoC.

Haven’t tried this:
“Melt the butter over low heat. Add the sugar and heat up both just until it’s just about to boil. This will give the brownies a crispy top crust.”
from http://www.thekitchn.com/thekitchn/baked-good/bittersweet-baking-finalist-2-yummynib-brownies-041634

Will I have to give up melting butter and choc in the nuker? OH NOES!

My spouse is not displeased by the efforts to clone MoC. “Did you make brownies again today?” he asks hopefully.

I’m now thinking about how to make chocolate pots de creme (basically, lots of bittersweet chocolate melted into creme anglais), and wondering if perhaps the answer to truffley brownies lies simply in more chocolate, maybe more butter. I’m going to have to put some MoC out in the hot kitchen to see if/how it melts.

I’m a bit obsessed with MoC.

Pam June 24, 2008 at 1:47 pm

After buying a small square of Miles of Chocolate from Central Market today, I came home to google the recipe. I taste unsweetened cocoa powder in the ingredients. There are also very similar recipes when you google super fudgy brownies (1/2 c flour).Keep trying, they are fabulous!!

Anna June 24, 2008 at 3:46 pm

Thanks Pam! I won’t give up!

Bash September 22, 2008 at 9:05 am

I got the crusty top by accident making blondies. When I tried adding chocolate to the butter + sugar, it didn’t work out at all.

Blondies:
3/4 STICK unsalted butter
6 oz brown sugar
(3 oz unsw choc – didn’t work)
1 Tb rum
1 Tb espresso powder
1 egg
1 c flour
1 tsp baking powder
pinch salt
1/2 c chocolate chips or, better, toffee chips

Melt butter with sugar (and choc) in nuker. Let cool a bit. Stir in rum and espresso powder and egg. Stir in flour and baking soda. Bake at 350 in a 6x6ish pan or a loaf pan until done, which appears to take longer than the 30 min I was expecting but I didn’t keep track of how long.

They came out with the perfect crusty top just like MoC except pale brown. (I think they need more espresso, too.) When I made them again with the chocolate melted with the butter and sugar, they had no crusty top at all and were far too floury-tasting.

Clearly I have no idea what I am doing. :(

Robin October 28, 2008 at 8:36 pm

Miles of Chocolate has a nostalgic taste that I have been trying to identify for weeks (while consuming about $30.00 worth.) After reading Pam’s post about tasting cocoa powder, I realized that it has the taste of the chocolate mixture in chocolate oatmeal cookies. If you are interested, you can google the recipe. For the mixture, I melted two cups of sugar with three tablespoons of unsweetened cocoa powder, one stick of butter and 1/2 cup of whole milk, and I let the mixture boil for one minute. It definitely tastes like MOC, but it is grainy. I have put it together with the rest of your batch 2 recipe and it is baking now. I will report in 28 minutes.

sandy January 11, 2009 at 8:56 am

So tell me – as I have just turned on to this chocolate treasure- Why are we not using UNbleached flour – that is what Miles uses, according to his website.

Anna January 11, 2009 at 9:04 am

Hi Sandy,

Can you point to where I mentioned bleached flour? I mostly used unbleached and it’s my default flour, but every so often I’ll use bleached in a cake because it has less protein and seems to work better. But I can’t recall using bleached in this recipe. When I listed the ingredients, I just put “flour”.

sandy January 11, 2009 at 2:16 pm

I’m just saying that Miles refers to using unbleached flour – I was not aware that you usually go with that as well -

Anonymous November 26, 2011 at 5:54 pm

If you’re still testing the recipe, try using a mixture of rice flour and tapioca flour in lieu of regular flour. We found a great recipe with the same ingredients listed here except with gluten-free flour. It works wonderfully! :)

Anna November 26, 2011 at 6:31 pm

Thanks Lindy! I have both types of flour in the pantry and will give it a try.

Kim April 9, 2012 at 10:34 pm

You guys are great. I did not know there were people out there, like me, continually trying to perfect the brownie! I just recently discovered the Miles of Chocolate brownie at Whole Foods….it’s gluten free and amazing, but, alas, I just read that it contains milk (milk chocolate?). So I decided to attempt to make one of my own, but I have not even been able to perfect a gluten free brownie that is to my liking, so I did not have high hopes for a MoC brownie. I was really hoping to duplicate that top crust and also the height of the brownie. I can’t wait to start trying…these comments are great. Exactly the dialog that goes on in my mind as I keep trying to perfect a gluten free replica.

karen July 19, 2012 at 7:51 pm

wondering what type of chocolate you are using. the fist batch i made i used 62%. right now i have 2oz 62% and 1 oz 100% cacao. the third batch i will make with 1 oz 62% and 2 oz 100% cacao. i really have no idea what i am doing–just playing. has anyone else used different percentages of cacao?

Anna July 19, 2012 at 8:30 pm

Hi Karen, I’m glad you asked! For this recipe, you need one that’s 99% or 100% chocolate. That is, unsweetened. If you go with 62% or any % that’s sweetened, you’ll get different results due to the sugar that’s in the chocolate. For practicing, I’d start with something easy to find like Ghirardelli unsweetened. If you like it, then maybe buy some Callebaut or another more expensive brand, but do make sure it’s unsweetened.

karen July 19, 2012 at 8:37 pm

thanks anna!! we had a family gathering yesterday and that batch was gone so fast!! my sister and i went to central market to pick up lunch stuff and she wanted to by MoC. i told her i had homemade in the car on ice waiting! she was so surprised!! :) this really is easy to make. thank you for taking the time to research this and getting back to me. i will start using 100% cacao from now on out. thanks!!!

Anna July 19, 2012 at 9:37 pm

Hi Karen,
It sounds like your brownies were a hit. I’ve never tested this particular recipe with anything other than 100% chocolate/unsweetened, so maybe you’ve invented something new. But yes, if the recipe says unsweetened, that usually means 100% cacao or plain old Baker’s or Ghirardelli unsweetened. 70% and 63% are often called “bittersweet” and percentages slightly below that are “semisweet”. I use everything under 100 interchangeably depending on how sweet I want the outcome to be, but when something is unsweetened, I go with 100%. So if you get a chance, try these with the unsweetened chocolate and let me know what you think.

Christina August 6, 2012 at 10:41 pm

I ‘think’ the liquor is actually chocolate liquor, which is a commercial term for unsweetened chocolate. I worked in a chocolate shop and it is what we used to make fudge.

Anna August 7, 2012 at 7:42 am

Christina, you are exactly right! I posted this a long time ago before I knew any better. Since then I’ve taken a few chocolate tours and learned all about the liquor.

karen August 7, 2012 at 9:09 am

ugh!!! :) i have started making this for a friend who loves chocolate and is going through full blown stage 3A breast cancer. out of everything people have brought her this is one of few things she really enjoys. i tried to find “chocolate liquor” on the web but cannot. i can find little bottles of chocolate filled with liquor and this is so not what i need. any handy help in finding chocolate liquor?

Anna August 7, 2012 at 9:41 am

Hi Karen,

You don’t need chocolate liquor for the recipe!! I’ll email you some help.

Kristen November 28, 2012 at 10:30 pm

It’s been a bit since I purchased Miles of Chocolate but it is my absolute fav dessert! I look forward to trying this recipe. My question is that last time I read the ingredients on the Miles tag it involved tapioca flour and was gluten free (main reason it is my favorite) so do you happen to know if that makes any difference or have you tried it?

Anna November 29, 2012 at 8:02 am

Hi Kristen,

Miles does make a gluten free product, but I’ve only tried his regular (flour) brownies. I have baked with tapioca flour before, but haven’t used it in these brownies. I’m going to email you a REALLY good gluten free brownie recipe.

Michelle June 7, 2013 at 3:37 pm

I am a law school student obsessed with the Miles of Chocolate brownies and totally blowing my student loan budget on them. I’d love to try to replicate them at home (at the cost of fitting into my clothes, I’m sure!) but I wanted to make sure I had the right recipe. you mentioned that you realized that the chocolate liquor was actually just unsweetened chocolate and that you’d altered the recipe to reflect that. Would you mind posting the ‘new’ recipe? I’d love to try it before my job starts up!
Thanks!
Michelle

Anna June 7, 2013 at 4:58 pm

Just omit the Kahlua.

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