I'm really embarrassed at how much I enjoy brownies from box mixes. However, we don't often buy them, and sometimes I am in a hurry. In the February 15th edition of the Farm Bureau Spokesman, there was a recipe for brownies that caught my eye. I've made (or helped make, depending on the situation) six batches of these brownies since the recipe came out, and of course, I've been tweaking the recipe too, and I think I'm finally happy with the result. This recipe makes an extra large batch of brownies and is quick because you don't have to melt chocolate, butter, or shortening. They're perfect for people in a hurry who don't have a brownie mix on hand.
Here is what you do:
1. Build your fire so that you will have a moderate oven (350º F).
2. Beat 1 cup brown sugar, 3/4 cup white sugar, 2/3 cup canola oil, and 4 eggs together. I have used four duck eggs in each batch, and they have been superb.
3. Mix in 1/4 tsp. salt, 1/4 tsp. baking soda, 1/2 tsp. baking powder, 1 tsp. vanilla, 1 tsp. burnt sugar flavoring, and 1/4 cup + 1 Tablespoon baking cocoa (I used extra rich baking cocoa purchased from an Amish bulk food store in the pictures that you see here.)
4. Add 2 cups sifted flour.
5. Pour the brownie batter into a greased 10" x 14" baking pan. (I've learned that some people call these "lasagna pans.")
6. Sprinkle two handfuls of chocolate chips over the batter in the pan.
7. Bake for 25-30 minutes in a moderate oven or until they test done. The brownies will puff up quite a bit, but don't worry. As long as you take them out in time, they will fall within a few minutes of being removed from the oven and have the chewy texture that we all expect in a brownie.
Usually, I like to frost brownies, but I've never frosted these, and I've never felt the lack.