Ina Garten’s alternative to a boxed brownie mix has been getting rave reviews for years. Why?
Her “brownie pudding” isn’t really a pudding but rather a brownie that’s really gooey on the inside, with a crisp crust. You’d compare it more to a molten chocolate lava cake than a traditional brownie.
To make this showstopping but fairly simple recipe, you need good-quality cocoa powder, flour, eggs, butter, sugar, vanilla and a surprise ingredient: raspberry liquor.
You bake the batter in a water bath to get the brownie pudding to be crisp on the top layer and gooey inside. Beating the eggs and sugar with a stand mixer until the mixture is thick and light yellow adds extra air and moisture.
A writer for The Kitchn raved about the brownie pudding recipe after trying it but recommends you add a pinch of salt to lessen the sweetness — and then serve your slices with vanilla ice cream. She also substituted cassis (black currant liqueur) for the framboise (raspberry) liqueur when she couldn’t find the latter.
In her Food Network tutorial making the brownie pudding recipe, Garten talks about making brownies for her husband Jeffrey for years, going back to when she was 16 and he was 18. He would share them with his friends.
“I think he would become the most popular guy in his dorm when they arrived,” she said.
She emphasizes the importance of using butter in the recipe and also scrapes a whole vanilla bean for her vanilla component. (However, The Kitchn found that if you don’t want to splurge on whole vanilla beans, vanilla extract or vanilla paste worked just as well for her.)
You can watch the Barefoot Contessa make the dessert here:
Garten also has a recipe for a gooey brownie cooked in a skillet that you might want to try out if you like the idea of her “brownie pudding.”
Do you prefer your brownies crispy, chewy, or gooey like this brownie pudding?