I was skeptical. Sure… I’ve heard people talk about beans in brownies, but really!? Must we really put beans in our brownies? Isn’t that just like having a CNN news break right in the middle of Teen Mom 2? Kind of a bummer.
I was skeptical and I was dang wrong. Beans in brownies is totally not CNN! (When was the last time you typed ‘totally not CNN’?) Beans in brownies is a trick that knocks down the fat and boost up the protein (even if just slightly). Sea salt and big walnut chunks are also highly advised….so advised, that you may find yourself indulging at breakfast. Like I did. This very morning.
Three different kinds of chocolate make these brownies worth their salt.
Semi-sweet chocolate rounds, unsweetened chocolate chunks, and cocoa powder.
Black beans get pureed smooth and you’re well on your way to delicious brownies!
Just look at that. Not a black bean in sight… but they’re in there!
A 9-inch square pan is buttered, papered, buttered again, and floured. It may seem like a lot of work, but this trick is wonderfully helpful when it comes time to remove the brownies from the pan. Just lift the paper and ease ’em out!
Whole walnuts left over from the holidays. These beautiful nuts look like brains… I’m all about it. I leave the chunky and almost whole to top the brownies. A sprinkling of coarse sea salt is also ideal.
See the tiny specks of sea salt? That’s where delicious lives. Black beans disguised by chocolate and sugar, beauty indeed.
The nut-studded, dry and crackled top. These brownies are undeniably delicious. So good you’ll want to share them with friends and show off what you can do with beans.
I like to just slightly under-bake these brownies. Twenty five minutes is pretty golden, and if the center is still slightly moist, it will firm up and cook just a bit as it cools. Dry brownies are a mild tragedy.
Triple Chocolate Black Bean Brownie
makes 9-12 brownies
recipe from Martha Stewart’s Everyday Food
1/4 cup (half a stick) unsalted butter, plus more for greasing the pan
3 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped (about 1/2 cup)
2 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped (about 1/3 cup)
1/4 cup black beans, rinsed, drained, and pureed until smooth in a food processor
1 1/3 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs plus 1 large egg white
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
walnut chunks and coarse sea salt for topping (optional)
Place a rack in the upper third of the oven and preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 9-inch square baking pan and line with parchment paper, leaving 2-inches of overhang on all sides. Butter and flour the parchment paper as well.
Fill a medium sauce pan with 2 inches of water. Bring the water to a simmer. Place butter, semi-sweet, and unsweetened chocolate in the bowl. Place the bowl over simmering water and stir until chocolate and butter are melted and combined. Remove the bowl from the simmering saucepan (the bowl might be hot!).
Allow the melted chocolate mixture to cool for a few moments. Whisk in the eggs and white, one at a time, until mixture is glossy. Whisk in the sugar. Whisk in the bean puree and vanilla extract.
In a small bowl, sift together flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and sea salt. Add the dry ingredients, all at once, to the chocolate mixture. Use a spatula and fold to incorporate. Once thoroughly combined, pour the batter into the prepared pan. Top with walnuts and sea salt, if using.
Bake brownies for 25-28 minutes, or until a skewer inserted in the center comes out with just a few chocolate crumbs on it. The center may seem undercooked, but it will cook further as it cools. Brownies are better slightly underdone than overdone.
Let cool on a wire rack for 20 minutes. Use the overhanging parchment paper to remove the brownies from the pan and slice.
Cut brownies into 9 or 12 generous pieces. Store brownies, wrapped individually, at room temperature for up to 4 days.