chambord brownies

With Valentine's Day quickly approaching, I wanted to make my husband a special treat.  We've been obsessed with Ina Garten's Outrageous Brownies.  They are the most delicious brownie ever.  They are fudgy, chewy, and easy to make.

We both LOVE creme de menthe brownies, but I wanted to make something a little more Valentiney.  I swapped the creme de menthe for chambord and added a little food coloring to make the filling pink.  I also made a few brownies a silicon hearts pan I've had lying around for years.

These brownies are rich, indulgent, and a perfect treat for my Valentine. . . as long as I don't eat them all first.

Chambord Brownies

Ina Garten's Outrageous Brownies

1/2 pound butter (2 sticks)
8 ounces plus 6 ounces semisweet chocolate chips
3 ounces unsweetened chocolate
3 large eggs
1 1/2 Tablespoons instant coffee granules
1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
1 cup plus 2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
1/2 cup plus 2 Tablespoons all purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 350 and grease an 9x13 pan (I usually make this in a 9x13, but for Valentine's I put a little batter in a heart mold silicon pan).

Melt the butter, 8 ounces of semisweet chocolate, and unsweetened chocolate in a bowl. I put the bowl in the microwave for 40 seconds, stirred, and continued to heat at 10 second intervals until melted, stirring after each 10 second interval in the microwave. (You can also place the bowl over a pot of simmering water, stirring until melted).

In a large bowl, mix the eggs, coffee granules, vanilla extract and sugar.  Stir the melted chocolate mixture into the egg mixture.  In a small bowl, mix the 6 ounces of chocolate chips and 2 Tablespoons of flour so that the chocolate chips are coated in flour.

In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt.  Add the flour to the egg and chocolate mixture and mix until just combined.  Gently mix in the chocolate chip and flour mixture until just combined.

Pour batter into greased pan and tap the pan a few times on the counter to release any air.  Bake for 20 minutes, then tap pan again on oven shelf to release air again, then bake for an additional 10-15 minutes.  Do not overbake; an inserted toothpick should come out clean.

Cool pan completely and refrigerate.

Chambord Filling
adapted from my grandmother's recipe for Creme de Menthe Brownies

4 Tablespoons of Chambord liqueur *
1/4 pound (1 stick) butter, softened
2 cups powdered sugar
a drop of red food coloring, optional

Whisk together all ingredients in a medium bowl until smooth. Spread evenly over cooled brownie layer in pan.
* To make traditional Creme de Menthe brownies, use 2 Tablespoons of Creme de Menthe liqueur instead of 4 Tablespoons of Chambord.

Chocolate Topping

6 Tablespoons butter
6 ounces semisweet chocolate chips

In a small bowl, melt butter and chocolate chips in microwave or over simmering water.  Pour over Chambord covered brownies and spread out to make an even layer.

Store brownies in the refrigerator.  Cut brownies into small squares or use a cookie cutter if you want a shaped brownie.