The Brownie experiment

Last weekend it was all about zucchinis.  This weekend it’s all about brownies.  4 different recipes to be exact …

According to Wikipedia (the expert on all topics!), a brownie is ‘a flat, baked dessert square’ that is ‘a cross between a cake and a soft cookie in texture’.  I was given a few recipes that I’ve been wanting to try for a while and this weekend gave me the opportunity to do so.  All of these recipes were gluten-free (obviously), dairy-free and refined sugar-free.  Grant made a comment that I’m really pushing the refined sugar-free angle with a lot of the more recent recipes I’ve made, but I understand these are still treats and should only be irregular snacks, not every day!  They may be low in sugar, but the calorific value is still there and should be accounted for if you’re watching your weight.  Having said that, comparing treats with and without refined sugar, while they may be similar in calories, I know my stomach feels much better with the no-refined sugar option.

And here’s how it went:

Brownies - sweet potato Sweet potato brownies (from Deliciously Ella) – I was given this recipe from a lady at work, who was visiting from London.  She mentioned that every year she did a 2 month detox, where she ate gluten-free, dairy-free, vegetarian and refined sugar-free.  She said she loved this recipe, and since it contained one of my favorite vegetables (sweet potato), I was hanging out to make this recipe.  So I did, and the end result?  Well, it was a lot more gooey than I really expected, and it wasn’t really my idea of a fantastic brownie, but still ok to use in a taste test with the rest of the brownies!
Zucchini brownies (adapted from a recipe from Henry’s teacher last year, thanks Janet) – When we visited Henry’s teacher last year to buy her second-hand couches for our new house in the US, she gave me a whole pile of zucchini and a recipe for zucchini brownies that she said was awesome.  So, I tried it, and substituted a whole pile of ingredients to make it gluten-free, dairy-free and refined sugar-free.  And the result – well, this time around it was awesome.  Using ingredients like almond flour, applesauce, honey and flaxseed, I think I made it a little healthier than the original recipe.  And it was definitely yummy, which I guess is all that matters! Brownies - zucchini
Brownies - quinoa Quinoa brownies (from a cupcake recipe I’ve had for ages) – I went through a real quinoa phase just after I discovered I was gluten-intolerant and found a recipe book that was all about quinoa.  Unfortunately that book has long gone, but I still have my hand-written copy of the recipe.  This was originally for cupcakes, and contained normal granulated sugar and butter.  Actually, funny story, last time I made the cupcakes, I left the butter in the microwave and totally missed putting it into the batter …!  So I changed some ingredients to switch out the butter and sugar for more natural ingredients and put it in a brownie form, rather than cupcakes.  These actually took the cake (no pun intended!).  They were great … and very more-ish!
Almond butter brownies (from my healthy chocolate mint brownies) – A good ol’ favorite of mine.  Real simple ingredients, including almond butter, maple syrup, an egg, cocoa and vanilla … and that’s about it.  This can have the tendency of being a little dry and crumbly, but if you’re careful about the proportions, they’re quite nice and definitely worth the wait for cooling down after being baked! Brownies - almond butter

So, 4 different types of brownies.  I gave a few sampler plates away and the majority of people I gave these to liked the zucchini and the quinoa ones the best.  I may have confused the issue slightly with the frostings that I used, as many people said they liked the banana ones best (I used bananas in two of the frostings instead of powdered sugar!).  I will be posting the recipes for both these brownies on here shortly … sorry to Deliciously Ella as I don’t think the sweet potato brownies really got many votes!

I hope you enjoyed reading about my brownie adventures – let me know in the comments below what you thought!

Until next time, enjoy cooking at home!



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