Saturday, March 13, 2010

Brownies and Buddies

Welcome to the yellow brick road, Sharon and Peaceful Dusk (who has been following for a while now)! Perhaps one day I will have so many followers that I won't notice when someone new joins in, but I hope that doesn't happen. I hope I always take note when someone is kind enough to be on the lookout for my gluteny news.

I haven't acknowledged my friend Jennifer as a follower either, but that is because she has been doing so for a long time and when she finally got a profile, I was already used to her. She went from invisible, to visible, to being a fellow blogger. She is my friend who can't have gluten or corn (some other things too Jenn?). A difficult combination, but she does really well and she encourages me a lot.

I have a recipe to share, and it is a surprising one. My buddies are always looking out for gluten free options and my friend Heidi recently passed on this recipe. I made it for a church event we attended tonight and my friend Vicki actually ate one without realizing it was gluten free. She couldn't tell and she loved it. High praise indeed; my friend Vicki is pretty particular about her chocolate. The recipe given here is my twist. I plan to make some additional changes in the next batch. Sarah (of the Sarah bakes again label, of course) suggested I swap out some of the oil with applesauce and I want to make it with pure maple syrup instead of the sugar, but this was so new to me that I wanted to make it (mostly) as suggested the first time. The result is a very fine and light cake-like brownie and as I said before, surprising.

Black Bean Brownies
No Gluten, No Dairy, No Egg (next time), No Soy, No Kidding

1 can (15.5 oz) black beans, rinse and drain well
2 eggs* (2 eggs worth of egg replacer)
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup Saco cocoa powder**
pinch of salt
1/2 teaspoon Argo baking powder**
3/4 cup white sugar
1/2 cup Enjoy Life chocolate chips**
1/2 cup chopped nuts of your choice (I used walnuts)
1/2 cup Craisins

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
Lightly grease an 8x8 inch glass pan.
Put the eggs, the olive oil and the well-drained black beans in the blender and blend on puree until the mixture is smooth.

Add the cocoa, sugar, baking powder, salt and vanilla and blend until smooth again.

Pour the batter into your pan, using a rubber spatula to scrape out the excess (this is a clingy batter). Sprinkle nuts and Craisins over the batter and gently mix in and smooth with spatula. Sprinkle chocolate chips even across the top.

Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes, until the brownies are pulling away from the sides of the pan and it passes the clean tooth pick test. Allow to cool and enjoy.

Now that you have finished reading the recipe, did you notice what isn't in it? There is no flour! When I was making it, I was too busy following the directions, making sure the batter got mixed up, and thinking about needing to go shopping to notice that little detail. My first bite was not long after it came out of the oven and I thought they were too dry. It was then that I wondered if I had forgotten to put the flour in, because I couldn't recall doing so. I went and checked the recipe and that is when I saw it didn't have any.

What I love about these brownies is they have all of that good protein from the beans. Healthy and delicious. A nice change for this gluten free gal. I just hope they do well with an egg replacer. I believe I will use a flax gel rather than Ener-G Foods' product for this recipe. I will update this post to let you know how it comes out.

No picture this time. Imagine a delicious-looking, dark brown, cake-ish thing with partially melted chocolate chips scattered across the top and you're there.

*Yes, I said eggs. I tried the organic free range ones again. The problem is that my stomach has been hurting since last night, so I won't be able to tell if these bother me, but I don't think they ever have when I have baked with them, mostly it was when I had a specific egg dish, like an omelet. I won't use eggs all of the time, but I will use them on occasion. This occasion seemed right.
**These brands are gluten free

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