Thursday, June 01, 2023

the best (and worst) of blondie

Literature and sport are all very well, you'll be saying, but what I really want is to stuff my big fat stupid face with some delicious cakey goodness until I fart. Well, Electric Halibut is here for you. It was my wife's birthday last week and, as is (intermittently) traditional, I concocted some goodies to celebrate. A few highlights from previous years include 2020's chocolate brownie cake, a triumph taste-wise but on an unfeasibly massive scale given that we were occupying at that time a moment in human history where it was uniquely difficult to share any of it with anyone outside the house. We did eventually work our way through all of it but it was quite an epic struggle.

And then there was 2021, where I hatched the idea of making some raspberry and white chocolate blondies instead, but in my hurry to get things in the oven (as it was rather late in the evening) made the elementary mistake of omitting all of the flour from the recipe, resulting in the ungodly oily lumpy (and needless to say inedible) goop pictured here. 

Then in 2022 we were in the throes of just having moved house and having to do quite a bit of unexpected junk clearance before getting our stuff organised how we wanted it, so I granted myself a cake amnesty and went and bought one from the shop instead. It was very nice, but to my taste a bit too sweet; then again I can't even remember to put flour in a cake so what the fuck do I know.

Anyway, I wasn't about to let 2021's failure define me as a man, a husband, and a cook, so I decided that 2023 was the year that we would finally crack the definitive blondie recipe. And I firmly believe that this is it. Note that it is largely derived from this recipe, with a bit of scaling-up of amounts to fit my 9" by 13" brownie tin and a bit of adjustment of proportions to accommodate the raspberries (which the original recipe doesn't have) and ensure it's not too absurdly sweet.

  • 250 g unsalted butter
  • 250 g white chocolate
  • 125 g white granulated sugar
  • 125 g light brown soft sugar
  • 4 medium eggs
  • 250 g plain flour
  • 200 g white chocolate chips
  • 50g fresh raspberries, chopped

Melt the butter and chocolate together (I used the microwave; a bowl over a pan of water would work just as well) mix it all up, add the sugar and eggs, mix some more, stir in the flour (if you're using an electric mixer, do this bit with a spoon first to avoid being engulfed in a mushroom cloud) and then the raspberries and chocolate chips (don't use the electric mixer at all here or you will end up with a uniformly pink cake with no raspberry bits in it).

That should give you a thick but still pourable batter which you can pour into a paper-lined brownie/traybake tin and put in an oven at around 180C/gas mark 4 for about 20-25 minutes. As with the brownies you want a slight wobble in the middle when you take them out. Let them cool and then put them in the fridge (overnight is good), then cut into smallish squares (they're pretty rich). You'll find the edge squares are a bit more cakey while the ones from the middle have a denser, rawer texture.

Anyway, they were exceptionally well-received and disappeared pretty quickly, helped by us being away for the weekend with another family of five. Where were those guys back in 2020 to help with the monster brownie cake? Well, locked in their house, obviously, but you take my point.

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