I believe that everyone can cook or bake. And to make sure that your confidence will grow try to find easy to follow recipes and make them your own. Start with an easy recipe and make it once or twice. Then start swapping some ingredients for other things that you either have in your cupboard or that you really like. Not sure if it will taste good? Well the only way to find out is to try it. If it doesn't work out, either throw it out or give it to someone who does like it.
The following recipe can't be any easier. And to top it they are also gluten, dairy, egg and sugar free. What could be possibly wrong with them?
The basic recipe:
1 cup dates
3/4 cup boiling water
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 cup agave
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1/2 cup gluten free flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp xantham gum
Preheat the oven to 180C / 350F and line a 8"x8" baking dish with baking paper.
Pour the boiling water over the dates and let them soak for 15 minutes.
Put the dates with the water, vanilla extract and agave in a blender and blend till smooth.
In another bowl sieve the cocoa powder, gluten free flour, baking powder, salt and xantham gum.
Mix in the wet ingredients and pour into the 8"x8" baking dish and bake it for 20 minutes untill it sets.
Don't overcook them otherwise they go dry, you want them nice and gooy-ie. If you want them gooy-ier reduce the baking time the next time to 17 minutes and see if you like them better that way.
Let them cool on a baking rack and cut them in squares. Don't cut them too big as they are very rich.
If you have any leftover, freeze them. Either eat them straight from the freezer, let them thaw a little or reheat gently till they are gooy-ie all over again.
So those are the basics. Now look in your cupboard! What can you find?
Any nuts? Walnuts, pecans or cashews for example? Add 1/2 to 1 cup to the batter, depending on how much you like them and what other ingredients you are adding.
Any chocolate chips or a chocolate bar (good quality dark chocolate of course!)? Chop it up in chunks and add this to the mixture. Add 1/2 or 1 cup depending on how much you like it and if you put anything else into it. You do want more dough then other ingredients otherwise it wont stay together and you won't be able to cut it into squares. So be careful not to overdo it on nuts and chocolate etc.
Hmmm, dried fruit? If you like raisins and chocolate, go ahead. What about dried cherries or blueberries and chocolate? Some like orange and chocolate, do you have any candied orange? Play around!!
What about a little bit of dessicated coconut sprinkled on top? Or big flakes in the dough?
You see, with a little imagination and the contents of the cupboard you can make your own brownie specialty! Great for a bake sale or the kids lunch box.