Best Ever Brownies are from Julia Child’s recipe in Baking with Julia, and what’s interesting about the recipe is the technique. Half of the egg/sugar mixture goes directly into the chocolate mixture, while the other half is beaten to double its volume and then folded in. The recipe also calls for an ungreased pan. I believe that has something to do with the fact the brownies need to stick to the sides of the pan to bake properly and that if you grease the pan, they’ll pull away from the sides. But I’m not sure about that and since I don’t like scraping brownies from pans, I just lined the pan with ungreased foil. That way, the brownies could stick to side of the pan and bake properly and I could lift them up and peel off the foil once set. It worked out fine.
Best Ever Brownies are super fudgy. I cooked them for 25 minutes and while the edges were excellent, the center was slightly too underdone for my liking (but I don’t like gooey anyway). So next time, I’d bake these for 28-30 minutes.
Julia’s Best-Ever Brownies
1 1/4 cups sifted all-purpose flour (5 oz/145 grams) — measure after sifting
1 teaspoon salt
8 ounces (228 grams) unsalted butter
4 ounces (114 grams) unsweetened chocolate, coarsely chopped
2 ounces (56 grams) bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
2 cups (380 grams) sugar (divided use)
1 teaspoon (5 ml) pure vanilla extract
4 large eggs
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 C). Line a 9 inch square metal pan with foil (no need to grease).
Stir the sifted flour and salt together in a small bowl; set aside.
Melt the butter in a saucepan set over medium-low heat. When melted, reduce heat to low and add chopped chocolate, stirring often until it melts. Add 1 cup of the sugar to the mixture and stir for about half a minute. Remove pan from heat and pour into a mixing bowl. Stir in the vanilla.
Whisk the remaining 1 cup sugar and the eggs in a second bowl – Whisk only until combined – don’t over-beat. Gradually pour half of the sugar/egg mixture into the bowl with the chocolate mixture, stirring gently so that eggs don’t set from the heat of the chocolate mixture.
Using a hand-held mixer, beat the remaining sugar/egg mixture on high speed until it becomes pale and thick (it should double in volume).
Carefully fold the whipped eggs into the chocolate mixture. When the eggs are almost completely incorporated, gently fold in the dry ingredients.
Scrape the batter into the ungreased 9 inch square pan and bake on center rack for 25 to 28 minutes (as noted, I took mine out at 25 and wished I’d kept them in for 28).
A note in the original recipe says to cut into the center after 23 minutes to see how the brownies are progressing. They should be barely set and gooey at this point. I checked at 23 minutes and they were barely set and gooey, but I gave them another 2 minutes.
Let the brownies cool completely, then cut.