Sticky Chocolate Brownies
butter to grease
175g/6oz plain (semisweet) chocolate, broken into pieces
50g/2oz ready-to-eat prunes
2 tbsp Armagnac or brandy
200g/7oz/scant 1 cup Demerara (brown) sugar
4 medium (US large) egg whites
75g/3oz/¾ cup self-raising (self-rising) flour, sifted
4 tbsp chopped hazelnuts
icing (confectioner’s) sugar to dust
1 Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas 4. Butter a 15cm/6in square shallow baking tin and line the base with parchment paper.
2 Melt the chocolate in a bowl set over a pan of simmering water. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool slightly.
3 Put the prunes and Armagnac or brandy in a blender and blitz to a purée. Add the Demerara sugar and blitz.
4 Whisk the egg whites until they form soft peaks.
5 Gently fold the prune mixture, flour, nuts and egg whites into the melted chocolate. Pour into the prepared tin and bake in the oven for 1 hour or until firm to the touch.
6 Leave to cool in the tin. Turn out, cut into 12 squares and dust with icing sugar.