Sunday, 14 March 2010

Star Anise Chocolate Brownies

The wonderful thing about brownies is that, if you regularly bake with chocolate, you always have the ingredients to hand to make a batch. They are so quickly made, too, that I find them the most useful 'cake tin filler'.

It also means, that if you see a new recipe in your weekend newspaper, you can get straight into cooking, without having to add ingredients to your next shopping list, by which time you will have either thrown out the newspaper or forgotten that you were enthusiastic about the recipe.

This recipe for Star Anise Chocolate Brownies was in yesterday's Guardian Weekend magazine - part of Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall's series on cooking with spices. (The meat dishes look good too!). I have to admit that, in my haste, I didn't read the instructions carefully, and overcooked the brownies, but that's a mistake that won't be repeated. I also thought that the tin size used was too large for the amount of batter - I will use a 7"(18cm) tin next time, as I like my brownies to be a little deeper.

As I know I overcooked them, I can't comment on the texture, but I think the flavour is possibly an acquired taste. The star anise and orange zest blended into something which was completely different to either flavour on it's own. I think if you like baking with Green and Black's Maya Gold Chocolate, you will like these.


Foodycat said...

I thought the oxtail dish sounded delicious, but I wasn't sure about these brownies! I find star anise quite overpowering. another use for your lemon curd?

Suelle said...

Star Anise is definitely a like it or hate it flavour, I think, Foodycat, although it ewas tempered by the orange zest here.

Thanks for the link to the cake - I've only got a few tablespoons of lemon curd left now, so it might be useful.

Celia @ Fig Jam and Lime Cordial said...

That is an interesting combination - I've never considered star anise and chocolate before. Not sure I'd love it, to be honest..

Lucie said...

These look fab Suelle, lovely to experiment with new flavours too - star anise sounds wonderfully exotic - good for you for being daring - I am far too dull :) Lucie x

Anonymous said...

Oh that is interesting. Lazily I wonder if I just used Maya Gold as the 70% required in the recipe would it pack the same punch as using the real spice????

Suelle said...

somesaycocoa - Maya Gold isn't exactly the same, but it's the nearest taste equivalent that I could compare it to. I think it's worth trying star anise.