There are times in life when only a brownie will do.
Now there are many reasons why this might be; birthdays, celebrations, break ups, heartbreak, fridays nights in on the sofa. Good occasions, bad occasions, brownies add something to the best of times, they comfort us during the worst. For me this time my brownie need came from running. Yes, running.
In one month I’ll be running my first Half Marathon. There, I’ve said it, I’ve told the world. I guess that means I’m committed to it!
I signed up with three friends a few months ago, and right now i’m really not sure why. Training is so hard. I’m obviously not made for long distance running, i’ve known this for years, so why, why, why did I think I could run for 13.1 miles?! When we first signed up, I had a time in mind. Gradually this aim shifted back to aiming to try and complete the whole thing without any walking. Then, as the weeks went on this goal shifted back again to finishing without dying and before they reopened the roads and shooed my broken self off in shame. Positive thinking all the way!
Puffing and panting our way through a run last week, one of my running buddy friends and I were pondering why on earth we didn’t sign up for the 10K run. For girls who, prior to this, had never really run more than a few miles a week in the gym, this would have still been a massive achievement. Why on earth did we launch straight in with the half marathon?
Anyway, the deed is done, we’re signed up and now just have to some how get our legs and lungs into shape. On Friday night I forced a few extra miles out of myself with the promise of these brownies. I made myself a bargain, if I completed the route I had planned, I could come back and eat a big slice of brownie. The bargaining worked, the brownie was so worth the burning lungs, aching thighs and hill after endless hill.
These are really good brownies. The brownie is gooey and rich, like all brownies should be. They become a little bit cakey, just around the edges. They’re filled with huge chunks of dark chocolate. I’ve kept the chunks really big, I love the contrast in texture between the smooth brownie and the bite of the chocolate. Finally, and perhaps more importantly, there’s the swirl of marshmallow. Sticky, sweet and contrasting beautifully with the strong, slightly bitter, dark chocolate. The brownies stick to your fingers as you eat them, always a sign that something is just a little bit naughty.
Chocolate Chunk Marshmallow Swirl Brownies
(adapted from Nigella Lawson’s Snow-flecked Brownies)
Makes approximately 12
190g dark chocolate
175g caster sugar
115g plain flour
200g roughly chopped chocolate chunks
4 tablespoons marshmallow fluff
Preheat the oven to 180C and line a 20cm square tin.
In a large saucepan, over a low heat, melt the butter and chocolate.
Leave to cool slightly.
In a separate bowl, beat together the sugar and eggs, until pale and frothy.
Once the chocolate mixture has cooled slightly, pour in the egg mixture and mix together.
Sift in the flour into the mixture and mix until just combined.
Stir through the chocolate chunks, then pour into the prepared tin.
Splodge the marshmallow fluff over the top of the brownie. Use a knife to swirl it through the mixture. If you can’t get hold of marshmallow fluff, you could stir through a couple of handfuls of marshmallow, if the mixture is still quite warm they’ll melt to a similar effect.
Bake for about 35 minutes, or until just before you think they’re cooked. They still want to have a bit of wobble in the middle to get the perfect gooey texture once they’re cooled. Keep a close eye on the top of the brownies, you might need to cover with tinfoil half way through baking, the high sugar content in the marshmallow can burn quickly.
Cool completely before slicing.