What A Swell Party This Is.

Photo: Me

My dear friend Alex puts on the most amazing afternoon teas. The eclectic mix of vintage china and crockery comes out, the flowers are fresh, everything is made by hand, (last time she made three batches of melting moments before she was happy with the result), and her husband knows me well enough to ensure there’s a to-die-for bottle of champers or wine on ice. These things, added to the company of friends who love you through thick and thin and you’ve known longer than forever, make for one of my all time favourite ways to spend an afternoon. And just to make the prospect of throwing your own girlie high tea a little sweeter, here’s our friend Jules’ favourite brownie recipe. If dessert queen Jules says it’s good, then it’s totally worth the minute on the lips..

Ingredients:
200g dark chocolate
250g unsalted butter, chopped
2 tablespoons sifted cocoa
350g (2 cups) brown sugar
200g (1 1/3 cups) plain flour, sifted
1/4 teaspoon baking powder, sifted
4 eggs – I lightly beat them before adding…
Method:
1. Preheat oven to 160 degrees C (fan forced).
2. Place the chocolate, butter and cocoa in a saucepan over low heat and stir until melted and smooth. Do this slowly.
3. Place the sugar, flour and baking powder in a bowl. Make a well in the centre and pour in the chocolate mixture. Stir a little, then once cooled a bit, add the eggs and combine thoroughly.
4. Pour the mixture into a lightly greased 20cm square cake tin lined with non-stick baking paper. Bake for 55-60minutes or until brownie is just set in the centre.
5. Allow to stand in the tin for 10 minutes if serving warm, or cool in the tin.
Makes 16 squares, however depending on how much you like, it may only make 8 decadent servings. Top with ice-cream or a dollop of cream.
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