Sunday, December 18, 2011

Pumpkin Swirl Brownies - dairy free

Yep, more pumpkin. It's like the fall version of peach week. But longer. I think this might be it, though. After all, it's Christmas this week, which is less pumpkin-y and more cookie-y, gingerbread-y, and cranberry-y. And, yes, those are the technical terms.

My plan this week is to post several recipes that might help you out for holiday gatherings. Let me know if you have any requests, and I'll try to work them in.

These brownies are somewhat complicated and create more dishes to wash than I usually like, but they were worth it. As brownies go, they are more on the cakey end of the spectrum than the fudgey end, but I like the combination of flavors (see? see?) and the pumpkin makes them nice and moist. They also look really impressive, so there's that.

Pumpkin Swirl Brownies - dairy free
adapted from Smitten Kitchen

cooking spray
8 Tbsp (1 stick) vegan butter
6 oz bittersweet chocolate, chopped (I used Ghirardelli)
1 1/2 C sugar
4 large eggs
1 Tbsp vanilla
2 C flour*
1 tsp baking powder
1 1/4 C solid-pack pumpkin**
1/4 C vegetable oil
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1/2 C chopped hazelnuts or other nuts (optional)

Preheat oven to 350F. Coat an 8-inch square baking pan with cooking spray.

Melt chocolate and butter in a double boiler or in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water (like you did for these brownies). Stir occasionally until smooth.

Beat together eggs, sugar, and vanilla until fluffy and well combined. Add flour and baking powder and mix in.

Pour half the batter (2 cups-ish) into a second bowl, add the chocolate mixture, and stir until combined. If you find that it is super thick, add a few spoonfuls of the plain batter in and mix well. It should be a pourable consistency.

Add the pumpkin, oil, cinnamon, and nutmeg to the first bowl and mix until combined.

Pour about half the chocolate mixture into the prepared pan and smooth so it's basically level. Add about half the pumpkin mixture on top of that and smooth. Repeat once more, so you end up with four layers (chocolate - pumpkin - chocolate - pumpkin). Work quickly so the batters don't set.

Use a small spatula or table knife to swirl the batters until you think they look pretty and delicious. Make sure you get all the way to the bottom. If you like nuts, sprinkle them on the very top.

Bake until set, about 45-55 minutes. Allow to cool in the pan on a wire rack before attempting to slice and eat. 

*I did half all-purpose flour and half white whole wheat. Official Taster has not noticed.

**You can use either canned pumpkin (NOT pumpkin pie mix) or some homemade pumpkin puree. Yes, I still have some left so you may see yet another pumpkin recipe soon.

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