Sylvie Damargi/Courier Brownies are made in Glendale, California on Sunday, May 17, 2020.
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We’re going through a global pandemic, it’s okay to feel on edge. Luckily, with this brownie recipe, the only edge you’ll know will be the edge piece. And if you feel desperate to go outside, simply make these “desperation brownies.” They don’t require a whole lot of ingredients, which makes it the ideal recipe for a beginner.

“I like to call these desperation brownies,” said Meghan Splawn from The Kitchn. “They require just a few pantry ingredients and no mixing bowl, meaning you can make them at a moment’s notice in almost any kitchen.”

Adopting a hobby can be a very helpful way to remain occupied while in the house all day. From buying ingredients at the local Target, to having that rewarding feeling when the brownies come out of the oven; when in doubt, bake it out.

While never having baked something from scratch, it came out better than expected. The brownies were so rich and were very moist and the edge pieces were the best part. While mixing the brownie batter, the dry ingredients did not fully mix with the wet ingredients. Adding some extra water and some vanilla extract can solve that pretty quickly so it was not a big issue.

“Here’s what you can expect when they come out of the oven: crisp edges, thanks to the oil that coats the pan and makes the brownies moist,” said The Kitchn.

The recipe calls for:
1/2 cup neutral oil, such as canola or peanut
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup natural cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
2 tablespoons water
1/2 cup chocolate chips or chopped chocolate (optional)
8×8-inch metal baking pan
Measuring cups and spoons
Spatula or wooden spoon

Here’s a little how to by “The Kitchn” themselves:

1. Heat the oven and prepare an 8-inch metal baking pan. Arrange a rack in the middle of the oven and heat to 350°F. Pour the oil into the 8×8 metal baking pan and gently swirl the oil around the pan and up the sides.

2. Add the dry ingredients to the pan. Add the sugar, flour, cocoa powder and salt to the baking pan.

3. Add the eggs and water and stir well. Crack the eggs directly into the baking pan and add the water. Use a sturdy spatula or wooden spoon to first puncture the yolks and then mix the batter until completely wet, about 1 1/2 minutes of stirring. If using chocolate chips stir them in and save a few to sprinkle on top . Use the spatula to spread the batter in an even layer, being sure to work it into the corners of the pan.

4. Bake for 25 to 28 minutes. Bake until a knife inserted in the center comes out mostly clean. Cool the brownies on a cooling rack for 15 minutes before cutting into 9 squares for serving.

“So these brownies are mixed directly in the pan they bake in, meaning you can measure everything into the pan, mix, and top with chocolate chips in less time than it takes to preheat the oven.” said The Kitchn.

As someone who has never excelled in math, the hardest part was measuring the ingredients. A tip to help anyone that is not a math wizard, like myself, would be to put the measuring cup directly into the dry ingredients and sweep off the excess. It was utterly surprising at how much goes into making brownies from scratch.

This experience was a fun one and the tasty result makes everything worth it. It can be very therapeutic. Making something out of nothing is very rewarding. I will definitely be making brownies until my cocoa powder runs out. It can be a bit messy, and a bit frustrating to get that perfect brownie consistency.

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