Gooey Mexican Brownies
- ¾ cup (1 ½ sticks) butter, melted plus 1 teaspoon unmelted for greasing the pan
- 3/4 cup unsifted all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
- 3 eggs
- 1/2 cup unsweetened Hershey's Cocoa
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease an 8-inch square pan with butter. Blend melted butter, sugar, and vanilla in a mixing bowl. Add eggs; beat well with a spoon. Combine flour, cocoa, baking powder, cinnamon, cayenne pepper, and salt: gradually add to egg mixture until well blended. Pour into the square pan, spreading evenly. Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 25 to 27 minutes (if you like them gooey, which you must, right?). Let cool and then serve. It's great with vanilla ice cream or whipping cream poured over it, but honestly my favorite way to eat these brownies is by themselves. Don't fix what isn't broken, you know?
My mom’s brownies are famous.
Actually, I think they’re my grandmother’s recipe (and that, maybe, she just got it from the back of a box?), but that’s neither here nor there. What’s important is that this brownie recipe has been in the family for at least two generations and now my sister and I have adopted them and we will pass them on to a fourth generation, our children—if I ever have children, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves!
My mom is famous for her brownies because she makes them for all of her friends on their birthdays, and for us kids on our birthdays or when we’re coming home to visit or just because. I love these brownies so much, not only because they evoke her and home and warmth, but also because they are easily, still, one of the most delicious things I’ve ever put into my mouth. After eating lots of things in lots of places—I come back to them again and again because they are amazing. And I guess that’s kind of what love is, right?
I’ve carried this recipe with me wherever I’ve gone. I converted the measurements so I could make them for my roommates in Spain. I recently made them for the first time in New York. With each iteration the brownies have been subject to small tweaks—of cooking time and cocoa amounts and whether nuts are included. Now, I’ll try to make my own mark: a Mexican chocolate version with cinnamon and cayenne pepper.
So, let us go forth with love. Let us go forth with brownies.