I’ve made a lot of challenging desserts in the past, not knowing how they would turn out. But this one had me concerned. These brownies are gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free, sugar-free, and vegan. Could I make such a dessert that was still good?
I made these brownies for a new friend who was coming over for a game day. I often like to make something when people come over. I found out that she had some dietary restrictions, so I was trying to accommodate those restrictions with this recipe. I didn’t have a full list of what she could and couldn’t eat, but I had a pretty good idea.
I found this recipe, which looked pretty good. I used the recipe exactly as is, except I substituted applesauce for the eggs. (I found the egg substitution here.) The recipe looked pretty straightforward, and I went to work on it. It turned out to be very easy to make.
Since I couldn’t find dark chocolate chips that didn’t have sugar (one of my friend’s restrictions), I got a dark chocolate bar. It was from Dagoba. (No, Yoda did not show up.) The bar was a little expensive, but I figured it was worth it, because without a lot of other “desserty” ingredients, the chocolate was going to be the star of the show. I melted it as suggested.
I wasn’t sure what kinds of oils would be okay to use given the food restrictions. So, I didn’t grease the baking dish. I just used parchment paper.
I used an 8 x 8 dish instead of a 9 x 9. Plus I didn’t measure the zucchini exactly. I just used 3 zucchini as they suggested. Between those two things, I think the batter was too thick. So the brownies didn’t cook quite right. After 45 minutes they weren’t done. After 55 they were still a little mushy in the middle, but sometimes brownies are like that. So I took them out at that point.
We were having so much fun hanging out and playing games that I almost forgot about the brownies. When I finally cut into them, it was obvious that they weren’t done. The insides were a light brown compared to the dark brown outside. They still tasted pretty good. And considering what they were, they were actually really good. Nice and chocolatey. No one had any idea what was in them until I told them after the fact.
Well, not exactly no idea. When my friend arrived, I had told her that I had made something for her. She asked a couple of questions about what was in them, and it turns out I almost made them work for her. They were good except for the chocolate and the almond butter. She couldn’t have them, but she was appreciative that I tried. And the rest of us ate them. So while they turned out okay, they weren’t exactly a success.
Later on, I took a couple brownies and microwaved them a little bit. That seemed to cook them enough and they ended up much better, like you would expect brownies to be.
If I made them again, I would measure the zucchini properly, and I would try it in a 9 x 9 dish. I run into enough recipes calling for a 9 x 9 dish these days that I might have to get one.
All in all, I’m glad I tried the recipe. It wasn’t perfect, but I learned a few things. And I definitely expanded my cooking “vocabulary” as far as what you can use to make something. How about you? What’s the most daring dish you’ve tried? What are the most unusual ingredients you’ve used? I’d love to learn more and have more tricks up my sleeve.