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Essential Best Foods Cookbook
by Dana Jacobi
These are the fudgiest brownies ever and they are gluten-free'. Best eaten right from the fridge, their velvet texture comes, in part, from pureed black beans, which also enhances the intensity of their chocolate flavor. I bake these brownies in generous rounds using a muffin-top pan, but using a square baking pan is fine (see Another Way, below).
• 1 cup canned black beans, rinsed and drained
• 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter
• 3 ounces unsweetened chocolate
• 3 large eggs, at room temperature
• 1 cup sugar
• Pinch of salt
• 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
• 1 1/2 cups chopped walnuts, divided
1. Place a rack in the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Coat a 12-cup muffin-top tin with cooking spray.
2. Puree the beans in a food processor until smooth. Measure out 3/4 cup. Reserve the rest of the bean puree to use in a soup, dip, or other dish.
3. In a heavy, medium saucepan over low heat, melt the butter and chocolate, stirring occasionally. This can also be done in a microwave oven. Set aside until cooled to room temperature.
4. In a bowl, using a hand mixer on medium speed, beat the eggs. Add the sugar and salt. Beat on high speed until the mixture is ivory colored and glossy, about 5 minutes. When the beaters are lifted, drips should linger on the surface for a few seconds before disappearing. Beat in the chocolate mixture until well combined. Beat in the bean puree and vanilla extract. Mix in half the walnuts. Spoon the batter into the prepared pan, filling each cup to the rim. Sprinkle the remaining walnuts over the tops, pressing them lightly into the batter.
5. Bake for about 20 minutes, or until the tops are crusty and crinkly and a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool completely in the pan. Run a thin knife around the edges of the cups. Cover with foil and refrigerate 6 hours to overnight. Carefully invert to release the round brownies. Serve chilled.
Another Way: The brownies may also be baked in an 8" square baking pan for 45 to 50 minutes. Cool and then cut into 16 pieces.
Best Ingredient: Some canned black beans are softer than others, like those from Whole Foods' 365 Organic brand or Westbrae. Softer beans are best in this recipe.
Per brownie: 332 calories. 26 g fat, 11 g saturated fat, 6 g protein, 24 g carbohydrates, 3 g fiber
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