It’s been a while since I last shared a recipe. I’ve been taking in more private orders of late, alongside the usual cafe ones so finding time to play around in the kitchen hasn’t been easy. Moreover, last month was a tough month for me so I didn’t have much drive to get experimental.
I did get round to making some of these lovely brown butter blondies before flying off to Hong Kong with Mum. And when I say lovely, I mean indulgent, fudgy, dense, chocolatey, nutty, richly decadent. While I certainly wouldn’t call they healthy, they are healthier in that there’s a touch more added nutrition with the use of spelt flour, and I subbed half the brown sugar for coconut sugar, and walnuts are health-foods, as is dark chocolate. And the peanut butter chips would be… protein? Kind of?
But first, I just have to show off our brunch setting at home when Pearl and YJ came over a couple weekends ago. Flo has made German pancakes for us a couple of times since our return from Hamburg as I was experiencing heavy withdrawals from Sangeeta’s delicious ones. Since he slept in the Sunday that Pearl and YJ were coming over, I made the batter while Flo cooked the pancakes once he had woken and washed up.
As usual, I tried to make it more nutritious using Spelt flour instead of plain, coconut sugar instead of caster sugar, coconut oil instead of corn oil. Flo doesn’t mind the latter two switches but insists that the pancakes taste better with plain flour.
Whatever the case, the pancake stack looks pretty and they still tasted pretty awesome with all the toppings rolled in.
We also broke into the Läderach chocolates (my favourite!!) that Oma Gertrud got for me for Christmas.
Usually Flo and I buy the slabs but these are pretty damn awesome too!
Pascal also managed to fly back with Crack Pie as per Flo’s order from his trip to New York. Thanks Pascal!! So when Les and Zen joined us later that afternoon, we decided to dig into it.
Honestly? Clever name but I don’t think it quite lived up to it. It was tasty, caramelly, dense, slightly salty but mainly, oh-so-so-so-so sweet. I cannot imagine ever finishing an entire slice. A slice of damn good cheesecake I can probably wallop but a slice of this crack pie? Nope. I think a slice between 2-3 people is enough.
Perhaps I’m just more used to desserts that are less sweet but most of us agreed that it was a bit too rich, too cloying and too monotonous after a while. Perhaps a little bitter would help balance the sweetness out a bit more. Even a bit of citrus. Anyway, it was fun trying it nonetheless especially after watching Christina Tossi on Chef’s Table. Also, not being a big fan of the Crack pie doesn’t mean I don’t admire her talent. The lady’s amazing, like the Willy Wonka of pastry with the creations she’s come up with. Cereal milk? Total genius. But the pie, not so much for me.
This blondie though, is right up my alley. I’m a total sucker for fudgy brownies and blondies, but this comes up trumps with its crackly top as well so there’s the little thin layer of crunch before you reach into soft, moist centre. Then that sprinkle of sea salt on top helps cut through the sweetness, while dark chocolate chips, peanut butter chips, walnuts and cinnamon round up the overall eating experience with bursts of melty bitterness, crunchy nuts and sweet spice.
I was tempted to start throwing in cardamom and ginger and black pepper to add to the complexity of flavours but I restrained myself. I mean, it’s already a mouthful saying Brown Butter Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Walnut Cinnamon Spelt Blondies. Topped with Flakes of Sea Salt. But this is truly what it is!
I made these in a 6×6″ baking tin because I wanted them #thicc. I don’t like thin blondies or brownies because they don’t hold as much substance as I’d like. To each their own so I’d recommend a 6×6″ – 8×8″ square tin depending on your preference.
Brown Butter Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Walnut Cinnamon Spelt Blondies (6×6″ Square)
100g brown sugar
75g coconut sugar
110g spelt flour (or plain flour)
0.5 tsp baking powder
0.5 tsp cinnamon
45g dark chocolate chips
45g peanut butter chips
40g toasted, chopped walnuts
0.5 tsp sea salt
- Preheat oven to 170deg C and line a 6×6″ baking tin.
- In a small pan on medium heat, melt butter and keep cooking until it browns and smells nutty. This will take about 5-7min. Pour brown butter into a clean bowl.
- Whisk in brown sugar and coconut sugar.
- Whisk in egg.
- Mix in spelt flour, baking powder and cinnamon until just incorporated.
- Fold in dark chocolate chips, peanut butter chips and walnuts.
- Pour batter into prepared tin and sprinkle with sea salt.
- Bake for 25min until just set. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely before slicing. Ideally, let it chill in the fridge so that it’ll be easier to cut. I cut mine into 9 squares and only gave one away to Flo cos the rest is going into my tummy!
As I always say though, you can really decide for yourself what you chose to put into the blondie. Not a fan of nuts? Cut them out. Don’t like chocolate? Switch to caramel chips or go all out on the peanut butter chips. Don’t like cinnamon? Stick to vanilla. Want something fruit? Pour half the batter in, top with sliced bananas and pour the rest of the batter on top before baking. Or fold in some blueberries. Strawberries. Raspberries. Just as the world is our oyster and our lives is what we make of it, so is baking. The basics are a science but getting creative with it is an art. And all art is beautiful. Or in the case of these blondies, edible. And very, very addictive.