So last Wednesday was the day of the Great British Bake Off final.
If you’re not from the UK you might not have heard of this miraculous programme; if that’s the case I urge you to find a way to watch it if you can. There’s no shouting, no negativity, no exploitative ridicule of the less-talented contestants, and no sob stories. It’s so refreshing not to hear the phrase “this just means so much to me”, gushed every five minutes à la the X-Factor or American Idol.
No, The Great British Bake Off is just about cake and good-sportsmanship. Wonderfully British, and everything television should be about in my opinion; so I thought I’d join in and bake something up myself. This is a slightly modified BBC good food recipe.
100g dark chocolate (around 70% cocoa solids)
100g milk chocolate (around 30% cocoa solids)
397g can of condensed milk, boiled for three hours to make caramel
50g cocoa powder
250g golden caster sugar
4 medium eggs
200g salted butter (and extra for greasing)
130g plain flour
1 tsp sea salt flakes (I used Maldon smoked sea salt)
Start with the basic baking prep routine: preheat your oven to 180°C (160°C for a fan oven) and grease and line the tin you want to use to bake the brownies. Anything like a 20cm square tin would work. Mine was more rectangular – basically, it doesn’t matter too much, as long as it’s roughly around that size.
After this, melt your butter in a pan.
Once it’s melted, take your pan off the heat and break in all the chocolate. Stir the chocolate into the melted butter and after a few minutes, you should have a very naughty melted chocolate/butter combo.
In a separate bowl, mix half of the tin of caramel with the 1tsp of sea salt. This should thin it out slightly and make it easier to spread.
Put this bowl aside, and mix the other half of the caramel with the sugar and eggs in an electric mixer. Here comes the good part: pour the melted chocolate and butter into this mix and beat until nicely combined.
It doesn’t get much better than that! Next, measure out the flour and cocoa powder.
Add the dry mix into the mixing bowl bit by bit, making sure the flour mix you’ve already added has combined before you add more. You should end up with a smooth, chocolaty brownie mix.
The next step is slightly fiddlier. After pouring half of the brownie mix into your lined and greased tray you’re going to need to spread half of the salted caramel mix that you made earlier onto the top. It makes sense to try to do this in stripes so that each brownie slice will have a decent amount of caramel running through its centre.
Once you’ve done this, pour the second half of your brownie mix on top, trying not to disturb the caramel below when you spread it out. Next, dollop the remaining caramel mixture over the top of the brownie mix and use a skewer (or a chopstick in my case) to create a nice caramel trail pattern.
Sprinkle some more sea salt flakes on top of the mix to finish it off, and then pop the tray in the oven for 25 minutes.
When you take the brownies out, they should wiggle slightly if you gently shake the pan. Leave these to cool in the tray before cutting them so they don’t fall apart in the process.
Once they’re cool, cut them into even slices.
I arranged mine artfully on a plate to wow my parents on their return home (such a mummy’s/daddy’s girl)!
These are definitely best enjoyed with a glass of cold milk, whenever you feel like you need a pick me up. A brownie a day keeps the doctor away, right? If anyone ends up making these I would LOVE to see your finished result so please tweet me @LilyBlogsLife.