I know what you're thinking, a blog about health including a recipe for dessert? Sugar IS one of our biggest enemies, but we are taking babysteps away from it. If you cut out all sugar today, I guarantee you would not be able to stick with it for life. It takes time to cut out sugar from our diets. The very first step is to stop buying packaged desserts. All those box mixes, refrigerated cookie doughs, and boxed snack cakes have deadly trans fats and high fructose corn syrup. I'm not telling you never to eat another cookie again, but please make them at home, with butter; they will be better for you!
I don't "health-up" my desserts. I have memories of whole wheat and honey treats as a child and they just aren't the same. My answer is to limit myself. We should practice moderation in all areas. Our family enjoys a movie and treats on Sunday nights. We always make popcorn, this helps us eat less sweets. Most of the time we have cookies with it and I only bake as many as I want us to eat. This way there are no leftovers to tempt us to overeat or indulge the next day! We can freeze the rest of the dough for another day. I always freeze my cookie dough in a log shape so I can get it out and slice just as many cookies as I want.
I have searched long and hard to find recipes for cake and brownies that taste as good as box mixes. My husband loves how the box mixes taste; I hate how unhealthy they are, so I was very glad when I found this recipe for brownies that we both agreed on. This recipe is really very easy. I can have the batter mixed up before the oven is even done pre-heating. There are no special tools required and no chopping of chocolate (that's not fun). These brownies are the type with the crackly layer on top. I adapted this recipe from an Alice Medrich recipe; she is the queen of chocolate. So this Valentine's enjoy a homemade sweet treat!
8 oz. Semi-sweet chocolate chips (on my digital scale this came to 1 1/3 cups in a Pyrex liquid measuring cup)
6 Tablespoons unsalted butter, cut up
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
¼ teaspoon salt
1/3 cup plus 1 Tablespoon all-purpose flour
Heat oven to 350°F. Line 8-inch square baking pan with foil. Grease the foil with butter and any parts of the pan that are exposed. Place chocolate chips and 6 tablespoons butter into a microwave-safe dish and heat just until nearly melted, stir to melt the rest of the way (this only takes 1 minute in my microwave, I stir halfway through).
Beat eggs, sugar, vanilla, and salt in medium bowl at high speed 2 minutes or until thick and light-colored, with a hand-mixer. At low speed, beat in melted chocolate until combined. Fold in flour.
Spoon the batter into pan. Bake 25 to 30 minutes or until edges are puffed and slightly cracked and toothpick inserted 2 inches from edge comes out with a few moist crumbs attached. Cool completely on wire rack (center will sink slightly).