Homemade Cosmic Brownies

I have a confession to make: I love cosmic brownies. Even though they’re mass-produced sub-par brownies. They’re chocolatey and sugary and I love the candy coated chocolate pieces on top. So when I found these pretty pastel candy coated chocolate sprinkles on a gourmet sprinkle website (did you even know such a thing existed?), I knew I was going to make pretty pastel cosmic brownies. They do sell brighter colored candy coated chocolate sprinkles too if you want your homemade cosmic brownies to look more like the traditional boxed brownies.

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Anyway, the stars continued to align when I got the new Cook’s Illustrated Baking Book as a birthday gift a few weeks ago and I noticed that they have a recipe for Fudgy Chocolate Brownies. The original recipe calls for an 8×8 pan but I wanted the thinner brownie a la Little Debbie so I used a 9×13 pan – these brownies are rich and intensely fudgy so I think the thinner brownie works well.

I made a simple semisweet chocolate ganache for the top layer and sprinkled the candy coated chocolates on top before the ganache fully set. I refrigerated the brownies for about 30 minutes to let the ganache set before slicing but if you can’t wait that long, these will still be delicious and just slightly messier slices.

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Ingredients

Brownies – recipe from Cook’s Illustrated

  • 5 ounces semisweet chocolate
  • 2 ounces unsweetened chocolate
  • 8 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 3 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup AP flour

Ganache

  • 3 oz semisweet chocolate, chopped
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tbsp heavy cream

Candy coated chocolate sprinkles

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 F. Line a 9×13 pan with aluminum foil or parchment paper.

Melt the chocolates and the butter, stirring, until smooth. Stir in the cocoa powder and remove from heat. Set aside to cool slightly.

Whisk eggs, sugar, vanilla, and salt together in a medium bowl. Whisk in chocolate and butter mixture. Fold in flour. Spread batter in pan and smooth. Bake for about 20 minutes or until done. Let the brownies cool for about 1 hour before making the ganache.

Make the ganache by heating the heavy cream in a saucepan until just simmering. Meanwhile, place the chopped chocolate in a bowl. When the cream starts to simmer, pour over the chocolate and let sit 1 minute before stirring until smooth.

Pour the ganache on top of the cooled brownies, smoothing with a spatula or knife. Sprinkle candy coated chocolates on top. Refrigerate for about 30 minutes to set before slicing; let come back to room temperature before eating for the best texture. Enjoy!

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