Last week my friend Nancy (Tag Sale Tastes) and I were discussing our favorite brands of packaged cookies. I was going on and on about Oreos, while Nancy clued me in on something a little more upscale — Sheila G.’s Brownie Britte, a cookie she’d found at Houston’s Central Market. Nancy was so in love with Sheila G.’s Brownie Brittle that she sent me a bag. Holy Guacamole! This was good stuff. And while Todd didn’t particularly care for it (he thought it was a little sweet), Fuzz loved it and even requested I pack some in her lunch box to share with friends. Needless to say, our 4 ounce bag was gone in a day.
Rather than drive to Central Market for more, I decided to try coming up with my own version. What I liked about Sheila G.’s was that the flavor was very much like a brownie and the texture was extra crispy without being greasy or having any sort of burnt taste. After making 5 different versions, I settled on this one. It’s not exactly the same as Sheila’s, but it’s really good. And Todd liked it, too! I think Fuzz still likes Sheila G.’s better, but she won’t admit it.
- 2 large egg whites
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar plus 1 ½ teaspoons granulated sugar
- 1 1/2 tablespoon of Hershey’s Dark cocoa powder
- 1/4 cup of vegetable oil
- 1/4 teaspoon of vanilla
- 1/4 teaspoon of salt
- 1/4 teaspoon of baking powder
- 1 tablespoons of nonfat dry milk powder
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour — make sure to aerate and stir before measuring.
- 1/2 cup of dark chocolate chips plus a couple of tablespoons extra
- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line a heavy duty 13×18 inch baking sheet with nonstick foil or parchment paper.
- In a mixing bowl, whisk the egg whites until foamy. Gradually whisk in the sugar, then whisk in the cocoa powder, oil and vanilla until smooth. Whisk in the salt and baking powder (making sure the baking powder doesn’t clump), then whisk in the nonfat milk powder. Add the flour and stir until smooth, then stir in ½ cup of the chocolate chips.
- Empty batter onto the lined cookie sheet and spread as thinly as possible using the back of a spoon or scraper. Sprinkle a few more chocolate chips into areas where they did not clump together (the chips tend to congregate). Remember to try to make the bark as thin as possible.
- Bake on center rack for 20 minutes. Remove from oven. With a pizza cutter or knife, cut into pieces without separating – you want shards, similar to what you’d get if making peanut brittle. Return to oven for 5 minutes.
- Remove from oven and let cool completely. Pull apart. At this point, it should be completely crisp. If you are left with a few thick, chewy, pieces, return them to the oven and bake at 250 for 20 minutes, then re-cool. If your batter is thin enough the first time, you should not need the second bake.