Last weekend we had our friends from Japan over. They will be hosting us on our upcoming trip to Shikoku in August, so this visit was a fun quick reminder in the midst of our planning that Japan is almost here! After closing down the local brew pub, we made our way on a beer meandering path to be welcomed home by a batch of brownies I had made earlier in the day. After being stored in the refrigerator, they can become dense and fudge like, and a wonderful nibble to end our late evening.
Again last night at a friends’ backyard bbq, I had a plate of small walnut brownie squares provide a wonderful sweet closure to the night’s tasting. All these brownie nudges at my taste buds have been fueling on my enchantment with Alice Medrich’s cookbook Bittersweet… it isn’t my fault I swear! The brownies made me do it:
Knowing that we are likely to have guests from the Bay Area with us tonight, I made a batch of Medrich’s unsweetened brownies with her semi-sweet chocolate variation (decreases the butter and sugar, increases the chocolate). The excuse being that they will likely need the sugar-fat fix after a full day of motorcycle riding. Being that they’re men, we’ll have to see if their beer gene expresses itself upstream of the chocolate eater protein, and thereby suppresses its call to chocolate response. We’ll see and call this our little secret experiment
My grocery store adventuring prompted me to mix up these brownies as a spiced variety using Sahale Snacks Soledad blend of nuts (Almonds, Flax Seeds, Dates, Balsamic Vinegar and Cayenne). I also used a bar of Dagoba’s spicy Xocolatl dark chocolate, infused with rare chilies, cacao nibs, maca, and nutmeg.
The resulting brownies are richly studded with the toasted almonds from the snack mix, and only ever so lightly spiced, with the full taste of the balsamic and chili coming at the end of the taste. They are rich and intense, so I cut them in small one-inch squares. To further give a heads up about the non-traditional flavor additions, I cut the one-inch squares on a diagonal, making them into Brownie Points.
Beer vs Brownie as an initial response in tired men? To be continued…
- with nothing against brownies with beer, I was curious about that initial grab response. Alas, our visitors were over-roaded in their trip and crashed south of us instead.
Interviews aluded to beer having better restorative powers.