Saturday, March 30, 2013

Avocado-Walnut Brownies (No Butter, No Oil)

No-butter, no-oil brownies? Seriously? With avocado instead of butter...okay, wow. This secret brownie ingredient seems to be developing into quite a thing online these days between the vegans and the paleos and the general health-conscious, I-want-to-eat-brownies-but-I-know-I-really-shouldn't folks.

This good 'regular' brownie recipe was the basis for ours. The batter was amazing -- always a good sign! -- the brownies were fudgy, and they're at least a little better for you compared to other traditional options. (If you're deterred in the slightest, know that surprisingly enough, you will not even taste the avocado.)

Avocado-Walnut Brownies

1 avocado (mashed)
3/4 cup cane sugar
3 tablespoons cocoa powder
2 1/2 ounces of a dark chocolate bar (about 2/3 of bar; like Lindt 70%)
1/8 cup skim milk
2 large eggs
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon espresso powder
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (toasted)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In your stand mixer, mix the avocado, sugar, and cocoa powder. Melt the chocolate and milk in the microwave for 30 seconds, stir, and melt for another 30 seconds. Stir again and add to the stand mixer ingredients. Mix until combined. Add eggs, flour, espresso, salt, and vanilla and mix until combined. Stir in walnuts. Spread into a 5 x 8-inch pan that's lined with parchment paper. Bake for 20 minutes. Let them cool for 30 minutes then lift them out using the edges of the paper and cut. Store them in a container on the counter or in the fridge. (Makes 8 large  brownies.)