For the month of May, I want to share with you my favourite gluten-free recipes.
I don't always bake with wheat flour. Some of my recipes work well with or without it... and sometimes they work even better without it. Sometimes.
One of the first brownie recipes I ever wrote, and featured on a Canadian daytime television show, was gluten-free. It was, for a while, my go-to recipe.
Since then I have learned to love an even chocolatier, thicker brownie which is what you are getting today!
Bonus: you don't need any special ingredients. In fact you probably have them all in your cupboard already.
If you are a lover of fudgy and I mean FUDGY brownies, then being gluten-intolerant suddenly becomes awesome and a non-issue. If you can still make and eat a great brownie, then things really aren't that bad.
Most people know I love brownies. I love the middle piece. I love it fudgy. Like chewy, stick-to-the-roof-of-your-mouth fudgy. Don't confuse that with gooey - gooey is raw. This isn't lava cake.
And if a brownie is cakey, then it is cake. End of story.
So to make a brownie that is fudgey without being gooey requires an appropriate balance of eggs, sugar and flour. And, precision baking - not too short and not too long, it needs to be JUST set.
In a wheat-full brownie, wheat flour and its gluten proteins help to set the brownie and give it structure. It isn't needed in huge quantities.
In a wheat-free brownie, I make up for this lack of protein with an additional egg. Note the sugar level stays the same - most of my wheat brownie recipes with 2 eggs use 1 cup of sugar too.
Since an extra egg means more liquid in the batter, we don't get that shiny crust that I am obsessed with, but I can make an exception here - these brownies are gorgeous. Also, since I'm using corn starch (pure starch!), we need extra liquid for it to absorb and allow it to fully gelatinize. Starch granules need to fully hydrate and swell before they can set completely. Otherwise it would taste starchy and powdery. This is how food meets science.
... and this is when food meets a really happy face.
No gluten. No problem. (sometimes)
Freakin' Fudgy Gluten-Free Brownies
Makes 12-16 brownies
300g (10.5oz) dark chocolate (60% cocoa)
6 tbsp (84g) unsalted butter
1 cup (200g) sugar
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
3 large eggs, at room temperature
1/3 cup (45g) cornstarch (spooned and leveled)
¼ cup (25g) unsweetened cocoa powder½ tsp salt
Preheat oven to 350°F/180°C. Line an 8-inch square baking pan with parchment paper, leaving a 2-inch overhang on all sides.
In a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan with simmering water (or in a microwave), melt chocolate and butter until smooth and glossy. Stir in vanilla and sugar. Whisk in eggs, one at a time, until well combined.
In a separate bowl, whisk together cornstarch, cocoa and salt. Add this to the chocolate mixture and stir until very smooth.
Scrape mixture into prepared pan and smooth out the surface. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with a few moist crumbs attached, about 25-30 minutes. Let cool completely in pan on a wire rack. Using the paper overhang, lift brownies out of pan and cut into 16 squares. For the fudgiest slices, refrigerate for 1-2 hours before slicing.