Oh yes I said it. BEER brownies!
If I can convince you to make one dessert for (yourself on?) Valentine’s Day, this shall be it! These are so rich and decadent and guess what? They only make a tiny serving! Just for you! And me. Of course.
Christina makes all the best desserts in batches to serve two people. Two! Isn’t that amazing?
I’ve probably mentioned it a million times but really, the only person I know who can bake a 9×13 pan of brownies and not consume it like a pyscho is my mom. She can make a large serving of ANY dessert, have it sit in eyesight on her counter in the kitchen and enjoy one single serving every single day and no more. Absolutely NO more. Not even a crumb.
I fall somewhere in the middle of that and omggivemeallthesugar. Since I technically cook for my job and have a lot of food in my house at once, I have a certain level of discipline when it comes to dessert.
That discipline usually goes something like this:
Bake a pan of brownies. Cut myself one pretty square of fudgy brownie after lunch.
Eat it. Enjoy it. Not like “enjoy it” by sitting down and savoring every bite, but more like “enjoy it” while standing over the sink and simultaneously scrolling through Instagram on my phone.
I’ll take one more forkful. I mean, I don’t need a whole piece. I’m pretty satisfied and a whole second brownie will send me over the sugar edge. But a forkful? Yeah. I can do that.
I mean, maybe a second forkful.
And a crumb. I dropped another crumb. Need another crumb. It’s cool, these bites don’t have calories.
Work work work work work (sung like Rhianna, I’m embarrassing) and then an hour later just maybe onnnnne more forkful.
One more bite.
Seven hours later dinner is over and there are 13 forkfuls of brownie taken directly out of the pan. BUT I NEVER ATE A WHOLE BROWNIE!
Do you relate? Or would you and my mom be besties?
That’s why I have always been obsessed with Christina’s concept of desserts for two. Two! Probably also since until fairly recently I was only part of a family of two, and those desserts were perfect for Sunday night dinner and the link. Small batch sugar cookies? Yes please! Little cheesecakes? Hello lover.
So. Guess how we start out making these beer brownies? By making a beer syrup.
BEER SYRUP. I need to tell you again. Beer freaking syrup!
Christina calls it a beer concentrate and it happens by boiling beer down until it’s, well… concentrated. Yes yes. I sort of just wanted to slurp it off of a spoon.
The beer syrup gets mixed into the brownie batter. It gives the best hint of flavor EVER. A tiny bit also gets whipped into the buttercream and now isn’t that just the best thing you’ve ever heard of in your little life? Sugar plus butter plus BEER.
Oh hi I’m eating this for dinner.
- 1 cup dark beer
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 cup + 2 tablespoons sugar
- 2 ounces unsweetened chocolate chopped
- 1 large egg white
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 cup all purpose flour
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter softened
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1 tablespoon beer syrup from above
- Heat the beer in a small saucepan over medium heat and let it simmer until it reduces to 1/2 cup. This will take 15 to 20 minutes and be sure to watch it so it doesn’t boil over. If it starts to bubble up, stir and remove it from the heat to let it come down.
- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line a 9×5 inch loaf pan with parchment paper.
- In a microwave-safe bowl, combine the butter, cocoa, sugar and chocolate. Microwave for 30 seconds, stir, then microwave for another 30 seconds. Stir until everything is melted and combined. Let it cool for a few minutes.
- Stir in 4 tablespoons of the beer syrup, the egg white, vanilla and salt. Stir in the flour until fully combined.
- Pour the mixture into the lined loaf pan and bake for 4o to 45 minutes. The brownies are done with the top is dry and a toothpick inserted has only a few crumbs sticking. Cool the brownies completely.
- Once cool, frost and top with sprinkles if desired. Slice and serve.
- Beat the butter and sugar with an electric mixer until combined and fluffy. Beat in the remaining tablespoon of beer syrup until combined. Frost the brownies once cool.
These are the fudgiest things in life.