This is the last of the recipes from The First Unconfidential Cooks’ Dinner—perfect timing, because tonight is The Second Unconfidential Cooks’ Dinner. I can’t wait! There will be ten of us, and so many new recipes to share with you. After the first dinner my friends and I discussed whether I should invite new people, mix up the guest list, or make it a much bigger dinner and have a buffet rather than a sit-down dinner party. (Remember, I invited five people, each of whom were to invite one great-cook friend.) So, this was the verdict: My friends decided they all wanted to come again, but that they would invite different foodie guests. So excited to meet them tonight, see everyone around our dining table (love that!), eat great food…and introduce you to everyone and their divine dishes (I know what most are, and it promises to be an amazing meal).
Back to the Brownie Pudding. So that we had a chocolate dessert at The First Unconfidential Cooks’ Dinner, I stepped up and made this Brownie-Pudding recipe from Ina—I thought it was good, but not as fantastic as her Brownie Pie, which is one of my favorite chocolate desserts. While Emma was making her Strawberry Cake with White Chocolate Frosting, I made this, and perhaps it would have been better had I not let it “rest” overnight as I do all my chocolate desserts (they seem to settle, the flavors meld and intensify). It was not as pudding-like as I would have liked. Also, I baked it for “exactly one hour” as Ina instructs, and I think it might have been a little bit too long—next time I’d start checking after 45 minutes. Having said all this, everyone loved it even without the vanilla ice cream I forgot to bring out.
1/2 lb. (2 sticks) unsalted butter, plus extra for buttering the dish
4 extra-large eggs, at room temperature (I used large)
2 cups sugar
3/4 cup good cocoa powder
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
Seeds scraped from 1 vanilla bean
1 T framboise liqueur, optional (I used coffee liqueur, since I want to intensify the chocolate flavor, not add to it)
Vanilla ice cream, for serving
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Lightly butter a 2-quart (9 by 12 by 2-inch) oval baking dish. Melt the 1/2 pound of butter and set aside to cool.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the eggs and sugar on medium-high speed for 5 to 10 minutes, until very thick and light yellow. Meanwhile, sift the cocoa powder and flour together and set aside.
When the egg and sugar mixture is ready, reduce the speed to low and add the vanilla seeds, framboise, if using, and the cocoa powder and flour mixture. Mix only until combined. With mixer still on low, slowly pour in the cooled butter and mix again just until combined.
Pour the brownie mixture into the prepared dish and place it in a larger baking pan. Add enough of the hottest tap water to the pan to come halfway up the side of the dish and bake for exactly 1 hour. A cake tester inserted 2 inches from the side will come out 3/4 clean. The center will appear very under-baked; this dessert is between a brownie and a pudding.
Cool and serve with vanilla ice cream.