Remembering how much I loved receiving sweet and edible packages during my college years, I surprised my lovely cousin Jackie (a college frosh) with homemade brownies for her 19th birthday. These way-better-than-Betty-Crocker treats come from the America’s Test Kitchen Family Cookbook. With their high sugar content, brownies have a stubborn way of sticking to baking pans even after they’ve cooled. The Test Kitchen’s ingenious aluminum foil sling makes for super-easy removal and serving.
- 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into chunks
- 3 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 350 Degrees. Line an 8-inch square pan with foil then coat lightily with vegetable oil spray. Melt the butter and chocolate together in the microwave, stirring often, 1 to 3 minutes. Let the mixture cool slightly.
Whisk the sugar, eggs, vanilla, baking powder, and salt together in a large bowl until combined. Whisk in the melted chocolate mixture until smooth. Stir in the flour until no streaks remain.
Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with just a few crumbs attached, 22 to 27 minutes.
Let cool completely on a wire rack to room temperature, about 2 hours, before removing the brownies from the pan using the foil and cutting into squares.
Makes 9 large brownies.