If you use a metal pan, the edges of these brownies will be flat and the texture will be even. If you use a Pyrex baking pan, your brownies will have puffier, drier edges, but it will be easier to get the brownies out of the pan.
Position a rack in the middle of the oven and heat the oven to 350°F. Generously butter the bottom and sides of an 8-inch-square Pyrex or metal baking pan.
Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Off the heat, add the cocoa. Whisk until smooth. Add the sugar and salt and whisk until blended. Add 1 egg and whisk until just blended. Whisk in the vanilla and the second egg until just blended. Sprinkle the flour over the mixture and stir with a rubber spatula until just blended. Add the chopped chocolate and stir until combined.
Scrape the batter into the prepared baking pan and spread evenly. Scatter the nuts evenly over the batter, if using. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with small, gooey clumps of brownie sticking to it, 33 to 38 min. Don’t overbake or the brownies won’t be fudgy. Transfer the baking dish to a rack and let cool completely.
Run a knife around the edges of the brownie and then pry it from the pan in one piece. Using a sharp knife, cut the cooled brownie into three equal strips and cut each strip into four equal pieces. Or, use a bench scraper to cut the brownie in the baking pan and then use a spatula to lift out the cut brownies. The cooler the brownie is, the cleaner the cutting will be, but these fudgy brownies will always leave some sticky crumbs on the knife.
nutrition information (per serving):
based on twelve servings;
sat fat g
Photo: Scott Phillips