Sunday, September 4, 2011

Brownies Knock My Socks Off

        I have yet to meet a person who doesn't like brownies. After all, what's not to love? They're rich, they're decadent, and there's a brownie to suit everyone's tastes. The brownie purists can eat them unadorned, the frosting fanatics can enjoy them frosted, the nut nuts (as I like to call them) can gobble them chock full of goodies… the possibilities are endless. If the day ever comes when I do meet someone who claims distaste, I'll be ready. I'll look that person straight in the eye and say, "You, poor soul, still haven't found your brownie."        
Nutty Peanut Caramel Brownies
        While I've always been partial to brownies, I unexpectedly tasted the perfect one for me for the first time from a bakery/supermarket years back. It was especially rich and fudgy, with chocolate chips stirred into the batter and a layer of caramel, peanuts, and peanut butter oozing out the center. Sound excessive? Maybe, but boy were they good. They weren't cloyingly sweet, either. I can't stand cloyingly sweet.
        I do intend to find my brownie again. When I succeed, there will be much rejoicing. While I still haven't yet found that exact brownie, I've come closer now than I've ever been before with these lovelies… Peanut Caramel Brownies.

       Perhaps a tad less excessive than my brownie but seriously delicious nonetheless. These brownies feature a liberal amount of caramel--it's spread with a bunch of peanuts between the two halves of brownie batter before baking. As the brownies cook in the oven, part of the caramel bakes into the batter and the rest of the remains locked in the center. The finished brownies have pleasant, slightly gooey caramel middles and generous peanut flavor.
        Super yum.
        Still… a baker's quest never ends.
        Have you found your brownie yet?

Nutty Peanut Caramel Brownies
(Yield: 1 9 x 13 inch pan | 12 large to 24 small brownies)
Print This Recipe


1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 cups white sugar
1 cup butter
4 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup peanuts, coarsely chopped

5 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
Confectioners' sugar for dusting (optional)

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9 x 13-inch pan.
  2. Use first set of ingredients to make brownie batter. In a large bowl, whisk together dry ingredients. Add butter, eggs, and vanilla; mix until combined.
  3. Spread half of batter evenly in greased pan. Cover with chopped peanuts.
  4. Use second set of ingredients to make caramel. In a saucepan over medium-low heat, mix butter, brown sugar, heavy cream, and salt. Whisking gently, cook for 5 to 7 minutes or until thicker. Add vanilla and cook a minute longer.
  5. Turn off heat and pour caramel into a jar. Refrigerate until completely cooled; remove from fridge.
  6. Taking care to keep distance from sides of pan so caramel doesn't burn during baking, drizzle caramel over peanut layer in a zigzag pattern. Smooth evenly across batter with a spatula. Spoon rest of brownie batter over caramel; smooth gently to cover.
  7. Bake in preheated oven for 30 minutes or until toothpick inserted in centre of pan comes out with a few moist crumbs. Dust brownies with confectioners' sugar if desired. Allow to cool completely before cutting and serving.

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  1. I used to think I didn't like brownies much, but I think it's because I'd only had the cakey ones. I like the fudgey dense these!

  2. You've sold me on these. I've found my brownie, it's super fudgey, moist, thick, and chocolatey. It's on my blog. :)

  3. sounds absolutely divine Nicole..
    first time your space..
    Am your happy subscriber now..:)
    do stop by mine sometime..

    Tasty Appetite

  4. Brownies are a true weakness for me and these look awesome!! I love caramel in brownies!! Yum Yum!!

  5. Brownies!!! Yummy! Always welcomed in my dessert list... Thanks for sharing.

  6. These brownies sound perfect - chocolate, caramel, peanuts - what's not to love! Wonderful recipe!

  7. Brownies are just a happy food especially when they have lovely caramel in them. Beautiful job.

  8. love brownies, and I'm a true nut nut!