School is back in session this week, so it is time to get into the school lunch/after-school snack groove. What better way to do that than with a little treat?
I found this recipe in Desserts 4 Today by Abigail Johnson Dodge. It is a cookbook filled with simple and delicious dessert recipes, all of which contain just four ingredients. If baking and desserts are not your forté, I strongly urge you to check out this book. Her technique is simple and straightforward, giving your "sweet" skills in the kitchen the best chance for success. Johnson offers variations of each recipe listed in the book. This gives the cook the opportunity to make them adaptable to his or her own taste. As you know, I am a strong believer in making it for you and making it your own. I followed my own advice with this recipe by adding a few tweaks.
These mini morsels are the perfect bite-sized snack. They are fudgy without being overly sweet, and the Nutella completely satisfies that chocolate craving. Normally, I don't care for nuts in baked goods like bars or brownies, but being as they are just sprinkled on top in this recipe, I'm good with it. They add welcome flavor and texture in this case. Now here comes the part where I make it my own. Like most of my chocolate treats, I like to add a bit of espresso powder to bump up that chocolate flavor. I also add a splash of Frangelico (a hazelnut liqueur) to bring out that hazelnut flavor. Both additions are optional, but really good. What I like best about this recipe is that they are made in a mini muffin pan, therefore I don't have to feel guilty about having that second one!
Nutella Fudge Brownies
makes 12 mini brownies
1/2 cup Nutella spread
1 extra large egg
1/2 teaspoon espresso powder (optional)
1/2 teaspoon Frangelico (optional)
5 tablespoons unbleached all-purpose flour
1/4 cup hazelnuts, chopped
Preheat the oven to 350º F. Line a 12-cup mini-muffin pan with liners. In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg, Nutella, espresso powder and Frangelico until completely smooth. Add the flour and whisk until blended. Spoon the batter evenly into the muffin pan (about 3/4 full) and sprinkle with the chopped hazelnuts. Bake just until the tops have set and cracked and a tooth pick comes out wet and fudgy, about 11-12 minutes. Set on a rack to cool for 5 minutes. Remove the brownies from the pan and cool completely. Brownies can be stored in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
Source: Adapted from Desserts 4 Today, Abigail Johnson Dodge