I realized that I have a bunch of brownie recipes that I've dog-eared in cookbooks or saved on websites that I have never actually made, in fact, I've never even made a brownie from scratch before.
So I set out to try baking up my first batch of homemade brownies and decided to start with a basic recipe. The only change I made to the recipe to add only 3/4 cup of pecans and then about 3/4 cup of semi-sweet chocolate chips to the batter.
While the brownies are good, I found the batter to be quite light in color when I was mixing it and they were still light colred when they came out of the oven. Luckily I had already decided to frost them and had a bowl of homemade chocolate frosting waiting for when they cooled. I would have liked a richer chocolate taste for these brownies. This is not to say I will never make the recipe again, I will probably just tweak it in the future, either with more chocolate squares or substituting a small amount of flour for cocoa powder. The frosting definitely upped the chocolate factor on the current recipe. Since the combination of the brownie and frosting was quite good, I was reasonably happy with the overall product. I may never open a tub of premade frosting again (sorry, Betty Crocker) since the frosting recipe below was so easy and so delicious.
1 cup butter or margarine
4 (1-ounce) squares unsweetened chocolate
4 large eggs
2 cups sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cups chopped pecans (optional)
3/4 cups semi sweet chocolate morsels (optional)
Microwave butter and chocolate squares in a 1-quart microwave-safe bowl at high 2 minutes or until both are melted, stirring once.
Beat eggs at medium speed with an electric mixer; gradually add sugar, beating well.
Add flour, salt, and vanilla, beating well. Stir in chocolate mixture, and, if desired, chopped walnuts. Pour batter into a lightly greased 13- x 9-inch pan.
Bake at 325° for 40 to 45 minutes. Cool in pan on a wire rack. Cut into squares.
1 (16-ounce) package powdered sugar, sifted
1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup butter, softened
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
Beat all ingredients at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth.