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This basic brownie recipe offers lots of options. If you're a fan of nuts, stir 1 cup chopped, toasted pecans into the batter. After baking, sift a little powdered sugar over the top, or spread with our deliciously rich Chocolate Glaze. To easily remove and cut brownies, line the pan with greased and floured heavy-duty aluminum foil, allowing several inches to extend over sides. After baking and cooling, lift the block of brownies from the pan using the foil. Press the foil sides down, and cut. Variations at the end of recipe directions.
- Microwave chocolate squares in a microwave-safe bowl at MEDIUM (50% power) 1 1/2 minutes, stirring at 30-second intervals until melted. Stir until smooth.
- Beat butter and sugar at medium speed with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating just until blended after each addition. Add melted chocolate, beating just until blended.
- Add flour, beating at low speed just until blended. Stir in vanilla and chocolate morsels. Spread batter into a greased and floured 13- x 9-inch pan.
- Bake at 350° for 35 to 40 minutes or until center is set. Cool completely on wire rack. Cut into squares.
- Praline-Pecan Brownies: Prepare and bake Chocolate Fudge Brownies as directed; cool completely. Spread uncut brownies evenly with Chocolate Glaze; sprinkle evenly with 2 cups coarsely chopped Praline Pecans.
- Caramel-Coconut-Pecan Brownies: Prepare batter for Chocolate Fudge Brownies as directed; spread batter into a greased and floured 13- x 9-inch pan. Sprinkle batter evenly with 2 cups sweetened flaked coconut, 1 (12-ounce) package semisweet chocolate morsels, and 1 1/2 cups chopped pecans. Drizzle evenly with 1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk. Bake at 350° for 50 to 55 minutes or until golden brown and center is set. Makes 32 brownies. Prep: 20 min., Bake: 55 minute.
- Chocolate Fudge Cheesecake: Sprinkle 1/2 cup toasted, chopped pecans evenly over the bottom of each of 2 greased and floured 9-inch springform pans. Prepare Chocolate Fudge Brownie batter as directed. Divide batter evenly between pans, spreading over chopped pecans.
- Beat 4 (8-ounce) packages of softened cream cheese at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth; add 1 3/4 cups sugar, beating until blended. Add 7 large eggs, 1 at a time, beating just until blended after each addition. Stir in 2 teaspoons vanilla extract. Divide cream cheese mixture evenly between each pan, spreading over brownie batter.
- Bake at 325° for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until set. Remove from oven; cool completely on wire racks. Spread top of each cooled cheesecake with 1 recipe Chocolate Glaze; cover and chill 8 hours. Remove sides of pans before serving. Garnish, if desired, with fresh mint sprigs and sliced strawberries. Makes 2 (9-inch) cheesecakes. Prep: 30 min.; Bake: 1 hr., 15 min.; Chill: 8 hours.
- Note: We topped each cheesecake with 1 full recipe of Chocolate Glaze. For a thinner layer of chocolate on top, divide 1 recipe of glaze between the two cakes.
- Peppermint Brownie Tarts: Prepare batter for Chocolate Fudge Brownies as directed. Divide batter evenly between 2 greased and floured 9-inch tart pans with removable bottoms. Bake at 350° for 20 minutes or until center is set. Cool completely on wire racks.
- Beat 1/2 cup softened butter at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy; gradually add 1 (16-ounce) package powdered sugar alternately with 1/3 cup milk, beating at low speed after each addition. Stir in 1/4 teaspoon peppermint oil. Divide butter mixture between each tart, spreading evenly over cooled brownies in pans; cover and chill 1 hour or until firm. Divide 1 recipe Chocolate Glaze evenly between each tart, spreading over chilled butter mixture in pans. Sprinkle 1/2 cup crushed peppermint candy canes around outer edge of each tart. Makes 2 (9-inch) tarts. Prep: 30 min., Bake: 20 min., Chill: 1 hours.