Tropical Wine BrowniesSo, there was a time in my life when trying to figure out what to do with leftover wine would have meant that I had had some horrible incident (okay that time was the last three years). Nevertheless, as I have grown more health conscious, I have drastically cut down on my alcohol consumption. It might also have to do with the fact that I’m living with my parents and see my friends on a monthly basis if I’m lucky, and that I know that red wine is sadly fairly caloric.

I just got back from one such occasion, but I only drank one night and therefore didn’t have any opportunity to finish the half a bottle of delicious Malbec that I got as a birthday gift and finally opened last week. When I tried to drink it again last night with dinner, it was clear that I had missed my window, so I started thinking about ways to not let such a precious commodity go to waste.

After fruitless searching for a wine brownie recipe that didn’t call for chopped chocolate (hey, I don’t currently have any and I’m lazy, okay?), I decided that I would just make up my own, and they turned out wonderfully. I highly recommend this for any other pathetic people who don’t know how to properly appreciate their wine on time, or for people who accidentally buy cooking wine and can’t stomach it (not that I have any experience with that…). And don’t worry if you don’t have cinnamon, nutmeg, or orange peel… I just threw them in because I think they improve the taste of pretty much every baked good you can make ;).

Cheers!

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Ingredients:

  • 1.5 cups of all purpose flour (or wheat flour if you live in my house)
  • .75 cups of unsweetened cocoa powder
  • .5 tsp baking powder
  • .5 tsp salt
  • dash of cinnamon, nutmeg, and orange peel
  • 1 cup (2 US sticks) butter, softened
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • .5 cups brown sugar (I used light brown)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 mashed very ripe or unfrozen bananas
  • 300 mL (1.25 cups) red wine
  • .5 cup shredded coconut (if desired)
  • .5 cup crushed walnuts (if desired)

 

Destructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F; grease a 9×13″ baking pan and set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, salt, and spices. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl (or a mixer bowl with a paddle attachment), beat together butter and sugar until fluffy. Add in the vanilla extract, then each egg (one at a time), and then the mashed bananas. Beat until combined.
  4. Add the flour mixture into the wet ingredients in thirds, alternating with about half of the red wine, so that you start and end with the flour. Mix lightly or on low speed so as not to overmix. Once combined, gently fold in the coconut and walnuts if you’re adding them.
  5. Pour the batter into the greased pan and cook for 30-35 minutes, depending on how fudgy or cakey you want them (I went for fudgy and 30 minutes was about perfect), until a toothpick in the middle comes up clean.
  6. Let cool for 20-25 minutes, then cut and serve!

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Notes:

  • Prep time: 10 minutes. Bake time: 30-35 minutes. Cool time: 20 minutes.
  • You definitely don’t have to add the nuts or coconut, but I think that it adds a little bit of sophistication to the texture, and complements the bananas.
  • If you don’t want the brownies to be tropical at all, leave out the extra ingredients and replace the two mashed bananas with two eggs.
  • I got 24 brownies out of this recipe, but serve as you will (and note that I may have eaten two in one go)! They would pair excellently well with some vanilla or lightly tropical ice cream, in my opinion.
  • The alcohol is still present after baking, so you may not want to serve them to children.
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