I had a grand plan to make these brownies the last time my mom was visiting. I asked Keith to pick up the Werther's caramels the recipe called for, and he did exactly as I asked. But, as I often do while reading instructions, I had only scanned the ingredient list and didn't realize it specified chewy caramels. Which definitely makes a whole lot more sense because why would you put hard candy in brownies? So the recipe went unmade until we made another stop at the grocery store. The wait, though, was worth it. And I should probably make these for my mom sometime because she would like them.
Dark-Chocolate Brownies with Caramel and Salted Peanuts
from Country Living (April 2012, I think)
1 stick unsalted butter, plus more for buttering pan
10 ounces (about 40) chewy caramels (preferably Werther's), cut in half (I would probably cut them even smaller next time)
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
7 ounces bittersweet (at least 60 percent) chocolate, chopped
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup light-brown sugar
4 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup salted roasted peanuts
1. Line the bottom of a 9-inch square baking pan with parchment paper. (Don't skip the parchment paper; these would probably be pretty impossible to remove without it.) Butter paper and sides of pan. Place caramels, flour, and cocoa in a medium bowl and toss to combine. Set aside.
2. In a double boiler set over simmering water, melt butter. Add chocolate and stir until melted. Remove from heat and let cool, about 10 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, preheat over to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, whisk together sugars, eggs, vanilla, and salt until very thick, about 3 minutes. Stir in chocolate mixture. Stir in reserved caramel mixture and peanuts, mixing until just combined.
4. Spread brownie batter in prepared pan. Bake for 30 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and cool in pan. Refrigerate brownies until chilled, 3 to 4 hours, before cutting into squares.
If you put one in the microwave for about 20 seconds, it will get all gooey and delicious, like one of those lava cakes places like Applebee's have on their desert menus. If only we had thought to get some ice cream to go with them...