Tuesday, March 26, 2013

"Cream Egg" Brownies

Confession time:  I am no fan of Cadbury's cream eggs.  When I was a kid, I couldn't wait for spring when they'd be in stores again.  And as I've gotten older, I've bought one every year when they appear, out of habit, but recently realized that that's it.  It's just a habit.  Not because I can't wait to have them.  This year, I saw them at the supermarket checkout, bought two, and gave them to Evie and Liam.  

It's kind of weird when you outgrow something like that. I've been feeling that way about a lot of foods lately, and oddly enough, mostly chocolate.   Such as lately, I find M&M's to be too salty.  For real.  Am I the only one?  

Anyhow, not the rational side, but the habit side of my brain, saw these brownies on Pinterest and I could not get into the kitchen soon enough to make them.  A quick scan of the ingredients and I realized with a little tweaking, I had everything I needed on hand. 

One of the first things I wanted to do was swap out the brownie recipe for my favorite brownie recipe, which I'll share soon.  It's insanely rich, and dense, and sweet.  But I opted to stick with the recipe on Love and Olive Oil because it had far less sugar than my recipe.  And I thought, if I'm going to top these with that sugar glaze AND chocolate glaze, maybe it's best to start with a less sweet brownie.

I'm glad I did too.  For one thing, I stole a small corner of the finished brownie and they were so good as a stand a lone.  They use far less butter and chocolate than my usual brownie recipe, which  means I could probably get away with always having the ingredients for these in house.

I made some minor changes to the original posters recipe, only because she called for milk chocolate and I only had semi-sweet chocolate in my pantry.  To make up for this, and mind you I have no idea what I'm doing because baking is not my strongest suit, I added a little half and half.  (I can't even tell you if that was necessary.)  What I do know is that if I had added the milk to the melted chocolate, the chocolate would have seized and become very thick, no longer liquid.  So I added it to the egg and vanilla mixture.  Then I added that to the chocolate and sugar mixture.  It worked out very well.  And again, these brownies were amazing.

In all, it was a lot of steps, but I thought it came together pretty seamlessly.   There was enough down time between steps that my kitchen wasn't overwhelmed with dishes and messes.  I did not wait the two hours between layers, as they suggested you do on Love and Olive Oil.  I only waited about a half hour between steps.   The only final change I wish I would have made, to be more Cadbury-like in authenticity, would have been to make my second sugar layer more orange, and not yellow.  When I cut into a cream egg when I was done making them, I discovered my "yolk" coloring was off.
The kids loved them, but that was no hard sell.  I got the rest out of my house by bringing them to Evie's preschool.  I wrapped a few up in cute little boxes for each of her preschool teachers, and put the rest in a box to share with the other parents at pickup.  One of the dads there said he waits all year for Cadbury cream eggs, and had one.  He said it tasted just like the original.  In fact, he took the rest of the brownies home for his family.   My favorite part of baking is sharing what I make with our friends.

Cream Egg Brownies
recipe adapted from Love and Olive Oil

For the brownies:
2/3 cup flour
2 tablespoons dutch process cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 ounces semi sweet chocolate, chopped
1/2 stick unsalted butter, cut into cubes
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
2 large eggs, at room temperature, slightly beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/8 cup half and half

For the cream filling:
1/4 cup light corn syrup
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
mik, as needed
food coloring

For the chocolate glaze:
3 ounces semi sweet chocolate, chopped
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into cubes
2 tablespoons sweetened condensed milk

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line the bottom and sides of an 8x8 inch brownie pan with parchment paper, leaving an overhang on the edges.

Sift the flour, cooca and salt together into a small bowl and set aside.

In a bowl set over a pan of gently simmering water, melt the chocolate and the butter.   Stir until smooth, then remove from the heat.  Add the sugars and whisk until sugars are dissolved and the chocolate is smooth and has cooled slightly.

Combine the eggs, vanilla, and half and half.  Add to the chocolate and mix until combined.   Sprinkle the flour mixture over the chocolate mixture and fold in gently with a rubber spatula.   Pour into parchment lined pan.

Bake for 25 - 30 minutes, until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.  (Mine took exactly 25 minutes.)  Allow to cool in the pan.

Prepare the cream filling while the brownies cool.  Combine the corn syrup, butter, vanilla and salt in a medium bowl.  Beat on medium-high speed until combined.  Add powdered sugar, a little at a time, mixing until creamy.   After adding all of the powdered sugar, my filling became too thick to spread so I added milk a few drops at a time until it loosened up.   In all, I used maybe 2 teaspoons of milk.  

Pour 3/4 of the filling over the brownies and spread into an even layer.   Add a few drops of food coloring to the left over glaze and stir until the color is evenly distributed.   Add small drops of the colored mixture to the top of the white layer and swirl it with a spatula.  Refrigerate until set.

In a bowl set over simmering water, melt the remaining chocolate and butter.  Stir until smooth.  Because I wasn't using milk chocolate, and I didn't want the glaze to be grainy from sugar, or seize from milk, I added a few tablespoons of sweetened condensed milk to give the chocolate glaze a little sweetness.   Once combined, pour over the filling and place back in the refrigerator to set.

Once chilled, remove from the pan by pulling the parchment paper out of the pan.  Dip a sharp knife in hot water, then dry it, to slice the brownies into squares.    Keep leftover brownies refrigerated.
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Emily Dickson said...

I absolutely love cream eggs! This recipe is genius, thank you very much
From Emily

JV said...

Leftover brownies?? ha ha, you so silly :)
I am making these today, I'll let you know how they come out!

Brandi said...

Oh my goodness, your brownies look so good. Thank you for sharing.