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These heavenly brownies are quick, easy and totally indulgent. They are perfect at tea-time or equally delicious served with crème fraîche as a treat after lunch or dinner with friends. Make sure you use the correct size baking or roasting tin and take care not to overcook them. As a rule, when you start to smell them they are usually close to being done: you are better off removing them too soon and putting them back, which does them no harm at all! Try adding nuts or other dried fruits as an alternative to the cherries, or make plain chocolate brownies without any extras at all.
- Preheat the oven to 350ºF.
- Line a (13 x 10in) baking tin (2 1/4in deep) with greaseproof paper or baking parchment.
- Melt the butter and chocolate together in a heatproof bowl suspended over a saucepan of barely simmering water.
- Beat the eggs, sugar and vanilla extract together in a bowl until the mixture is thick and creamy and coats the back of a spoon.
- Once the butter and the chocolate have melted, remove from the heat and beat in the egg mixture.
- Sift the flour and salt together, then add them to the mixture, and continue to beat until smooth. Stir in the dried cherries.
- Pour into the roasting tin, ensuring the mixture is evenly distributed in the tin. Bake in the oven for 20–25 minutes or until the whole of the top has formed a light brown crust that has started to crack.
- This giant brownie should not wobble, but should remain gooey on the inside.
- Leave to cool for about 20 minutes before cutting into large squares while still in the pan. The greaseproof paper or baking parchment should peel off easily.