Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Molten PB & J Lava Brownies

If there were ever a string of words that were more perfect together, it would be these: molten + peanut butter + jelly + brownies.

Really, life is pretty good when I can come home and eat brownies and peanut butter with a spoon from the same source!

This creation is over the top and perfectly portioned for its richness. It uses ingredients that I just know you have in your pantry - I know it! Plus you don't need a mixer and you only need one or two bowls to make it all come together.

Do you only have 1 lonely egg in your carton? No problem! That's all you need today.

We bake this creation in a loaf pan for even cooking. It is just the right amount of surface area to leave the center gooey and the edges just set. Baking it in a larger batch might meant that the edges will be over cooked by the time the center is just right, and cooking just until the edges are soft and gooey will mean that the center is still dead raw.

Also, this is a very rich dessert so small servings are probably ideal... although, you know, live it up if that's the mood you're in! I'm down with that.

It all starts with the common brownie batter: melted butter, cocoa, sugar, egg, a bit of flour, cocoa and salt. Then we reserve a portion of the batter and stir it up with strawberry jam. The added sugar and pectin from the jam will slow the setting time for the brownie base making sure you are left with that goo factor!

Swirl the jammy batter into the traditional chocolate batter and then fold in peanut butter chips or dollop salty peanut butter around the surface. I used peanut butter feves, which are basically peanut butter chips but in a larger disc shape so that you get pools of molten peanut butter.

You will not regret this. Enjoy :)

Molten PB&J Lava Brownies
makes 8 gooey brownies

1 large egg, at room temperature
2/3 cup (135g) granulated sugar
½ tsp vanilla extract
5 tbsp (70g) salted butter
1/3 cup (28g) cocoa powder
¼ tsp salt
¼ cup (35g) all-purpose flour
1/3 cup (56g) peanut butter feves or chips (or you can dollop natural peanut butter)
¼ cup (60ml) strawberry or raspberry jam
1 tsp freeze dried raspberry powder

Preheat your oven to 325°F and line an 8x4-inch loaf pan with parchment paper.

Whisk together egg, sugar and vanilla vigorously in a medium bowl until well combined and lightened by a shade. Set it aside to allow the sugar to dissolve in the egg for 5 minutes. Meanwhile melt butter in a small saucepan over medium-low heat and continue to heat until it just starts to bubble and crack (it will be very hot and that’s the point). Add cocoa and salt and whisk it in until smooth then pour this warm cocoa mixture into the egg mixture and whisk until well blended. 

Add flour and stir it in until combined then fold through the peanut butter chips. Scoop ¼ cup of batter into a separate bowl and stir in jam until evenly blended. Place spoonfuls chocolate batter and jam batter into your prepared pan and swirl them together using a butter knife. Scatter extra peanut butter chips on top, or if using peanut butter then dollop teaspoons of it over the surface and swirl it in just slightly.

Bake for 20-23 minutes until puffed and the surface looks shiny but it still wobbles in the center when you giggle the pan. Transfer pan to a wire rack to cool. It will sink as it cools but still be molten in the center. Let cool for 10-15 minutes and then serve warm. Or, let set completely before slicing and storing in the fridge, and then rewarm in the microwave to serve molten again.
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