I have a major weakness for both coffee and all coffee-flavored desserts. Even as a little girl, I loved coffee ice cream. And as much as I try to convince Caroline that my coffee is "yucky," she still likes it and asks for sips when we go to Target (is anyone else incapable of going to Target without also going to the Starbucks in the front of the store?). It was also a cruel cruel punishment that my biggest craving throughout my pregnancy with Smith was iced vanilla lattes. So as much as I love coffee, I'm actually not a huge fan of mochas. I think they are a little too rich for a drink. But mocha flavored desserts? I'm all over those.
Sometimes I just can't leave well-enough alone. I started out wanting to make brownies for dessert one night when we were having some friends over. Then when I opened my cookbook to the recipe I use, the espresso brownies caught my eye. So I figured, why not? And then once they came out of the oven, I thought about how awesome they would be if I topped them with some mocha buttercream. Again, why not? And then I remembered these peppermint frosted brownies that I bookmarked at Christmas, and how I loved the thin layer of ganache on top. And I went for it.
Let me tell you right now that if you make these, you might as well throw your resolutions out the window. Unless your resolution was to eat more brownies. In that case, good job! I definitely should have cut these into smaller squares... but I didn't. These might be one of the most decadent desserts I've ever made, so it should come as no shock that they are also one of my favorite. And definitely my favorite brownie.
Mocha-Frosted Espresso Brownies
inspired by Confections of a Foodie Bride
Triple-Chocolate Espresso Brownies
barely adapted from Baking Illustrated
- 5 oz semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, chopped
- 2 oz unsweetened chocolate, chopped
- 8 Tbs unsalted butter, cut into quarters
- 3 Tbs cocoa powder
- 2 Tbs instant espresso powder or instant coffee powder
- 3 large eggs
- 1 1/4 cups sugar
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 Tbs Kahlua liqueur (optional)
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and adjust the rack to the lower-middle position. Line a 9-inch square baking dish with foil, leaving a 2-inch overhang on two sides. Use another sheet of foil to line the dish perpendicular to the fist piece, leaving another overhang on two sides. Spritz with cooking spray.
Add the chopped chocolates and the butter to a medium, microwave-safe bowl, and cook for 30-second intervals, until melted, stirring well after each time. Whisk in the cocoa and espresso powder until smooth. Set aside to cool slightly.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, sugar, vanilla, Kahlua, and salt until well-combined. Whisk in the warm chocolate mixture, then stir in the flour with a wooden spoon. Pour the batter into the prepared baking dish, and spread into the corners with a spatula. Level the surface.
Bake 30 to 35 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out with just a few crumbs attached. Cool on a wire rack to room temperature, about 2 hours.
adapted from My Baking Addiction, via Smells Like Home
- 1 stick unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- pinch of salt
- 1 Tbs Kahlua
- 2 - 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
- 1 Tbs cocoa powder, sifted
- 1 Tbs instant espresso powder, dissolved in 1Tbs warm water
- 1-3 Tbs heavy cream
adapted from Confections of a Foodie Bride
- 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
- 2 Tbs butter or vegetable oil
- 1 tsp Kahlua
To assemble the brownies, use an offset spatula to spread the mocha frosting in an even layer over the brownies. Allow to set for about 10-20 minutes. then pour the chocolate glaze over the top. Working quickly but gently, use a rubber spatula or the back of a spoon to spread the glaze over the frosting. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, or until the glaze is set. Remove the brownies from the pan using the foil overhang, and cut into squares.