As an avid lover of the confectionary lifestyle, the idea of converting your kitchen into a chocolatier’s workshop, wowing family and friends with smoky chocolate brownies inspired by Roodeberg’s cherished Classic Red Blend sounds like a brilliant idea.
Created by Ilse van der Merwe, well-known food writer and TV personality at www.thefoodfox.com, with the perfect glass of Roodeberg, these delicious brownies are coated in rich chocolate and topped with smoked paprika and salt. These decadent brownies will work their magic with the wine’s smooth palate and aromatic fruity layers with hints of sweet spice and dark chocolate.
“Pairing the right flavours with a particular wine is all about balance. You might be used to the beautiful balance of bitterness and sweetness when it comes to pairing red wine with dark chocolate, but I’ve added three surprising elements: salt, smoke and earthy umami in the shape of smoked salt and smoked paprika. This means we’ve created a dark chocolate brownie with a savoury quality that you’d usually associate with roasts and braaied meats, yet wrapped up in the shape and texture of a decadent, dark, sweet treat – simply heavenly paired with the iconic Roodeberg Classic Red blend,” says Ilse.
230 g (almost 1 cup) butter
375 g (1 4/5 cup) sugar
125 g (1 cup) cocoa powder
10 ml (2 teaspoons) smoked paprika, plus extra for sprinkling
2,5 ml (1/2 teaspoon) salt
5 ml vanilla extract
3 XL eggs
100 g (3/4 cup) cake flour
100 g (1 cup) walnuts, roughly chopped
80 g coffee flavoured dark chocolate (or plain dark chocolate)
smoked salt, for sprinkling
Preheat the oven to 170°C and position the rack in the lower third of the oven. In a medium pot over low heat, melt the butter (do not boil). When completely melted, remove from the heat and add the sugar, cocoa powder, paprika and salt to the warm pot. Stir with a wooden spoon until well mixed, then add the vanilla and one egg at a time, mixing very well between the additions of each egg. When the mixture is thick and glossy, stir in the flour (no need to sift) until no streaks remain, then keep stirring for exactly 40 strokes. Now stir in the chopped walnuts. Line a 30x20cm baking tin with non-stick baking paper, then transfer the brownie mixture into the lined tin, edging it evenly into all corners. Bake for 20-22 minutes until the middle is risen but still very soft (it must look slightly under-baked), then remove from the oven to cool completely. For the top layer, break the chocolate into smaller blocks and melt in a small bowl in the microwave at 30 second increments until fully melted. Pour over the brownies, then spread evenly all over. Sprinkle lightly with smoked salt flakes and some smoked paprika, then cut into bars/squares when the chocolate has firmed up. Enjoy with Roodeberg Classic Red Blend and store in an airtight container for up to 5 days.