It’s Valentine’s Day morning, I’m in the second stage of my book edit, I have a photo shoot taking place for a magazine around twelve today (will tweet, facebook and instagram from it, links below if you’d like to follow). Robert the Husband has the week off work and he has given me a subscription to Tatler and three pale yellow Hellebore as a Valentine’s gift. He also made my coffee. I’m so happy. We both feel like the shock of last year is wearing off, who knew it would take months and months, and we are laughing a lot more again. It’s normal. I had no idea it would impact in the way it did. Such a delay. So strange.
But enough of that, I’m here to give you a recipe for the softest, most dense bite of brownie you could ask for on Valentine’s Day. And to say thank you.
Will you all be my Valentine? I love you, but you already know that.
You will need:
For the chocolate brownie hearts -
200g plain flour
200g butter, unsalted and softened (plus a a little extra for greasing)
200g caster sugar
4 large free range eggs
170ml whole (full fat) milk
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp vanilla extract
For the buttercream filling & topping-
200g icing sugar, sifted
200g butter, unsalted and softened
1 tsp vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 190°c/Gas 5
In the bowl of a stand alone mixer, blend the sugar and butter until creamy. In separate small clean bowl, lightly whisk the eggs. Sift the flour into the mixing bowl and whilst the mixer is moving, slowly add the eggs until the mixture is light and creamy. Sift in the cocoa and the baking powder and add the milk, salt and vanilla. Mix together for a least 3-4 minutes until fully combined and the mixture is smooth and lump free.
Pour the brownie mixture into a square, greased baking tin, 23cm x 23cm wide and 7cm deep, and bake in the oven for around 30 minutes.
Once the cake has been remove from the oven, allow it to cool completely before removing the cake from the tin.
Use a heart shaped cookie cutter (aprrox 5cm) to carefully cut the chocolate brownie cake into heart shaped pieces. If the cookie cutter does not go all the way through the brownie cake to the bottom, use a small, sharp knife to cut around the heart shape cutting all the way through.
When all of the hearts have been cut, (from this mix, you should be able to cut at least 8 heart shaped brownies) use a clean, sharp knife to cut the brownies in half equally, through the middle. Set the brownie pieces to one side for the time being.
For the filling and the topping, combine the butter, icing sugar and vanilla in the bowl of a stand alone mixer and mix until almost white in colour.
Transfer the butter cream filling to a piping bag with a small nozzle attachment.
Pipe the butter cream onto the bottom half of the heart shaped brownies and then replace the tops.
Decoratively pipe the icing onto the top of the hearts as you wish.
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