The first chocolate recipe of the year ! A chocolate fudge filling ( which I think it's quite a lighter version of brownie ) sandwiched between a crunchy brown sugar crust and a thin, crisp chocolate top..how could you resist ???
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour 1/4 cup packed light brown sugar 1/8 teaspoon salt 1/2 cup (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into 8 pieces
Topping (Fudge Soufflé)
3 tbsp unsalted butter, cut in pieces 5 oz semisweet chocolate, chopped 2 large eggs, separated 1/8 tsp cream of tartar 3 tbsp sugar 1 tsp instant coffee dissolved in 1 tsp hot water 1 tbsp unbleached all-purpose flour some cashew nuts for topping ( it's my choice ,not called for in the recipe)
Make the crust: Butter the bottom and sides of an 8x8x2 or 9x9x2 baking pan. Put the flour and packed light brown sugar and the salt in the bowl of an electric mixer and mix on low speed just to blend the ingredients, about 10 seconds. Add the butter. Increase the speed to medium and mix until fine crumbs form, about 1 minute. (Some large crumbs, about 1/4 inch in size, will remain.) Transfer the mixture to the prepared pan and press it evenly over the bottom.
Position a rack in the middle of the oven. Preheat the oven to 350F. Bake the crust until the top is golden, 20 to 25 minutes.
Make the fudge souffle: Put the butter and chocolate in a heatproof container and place it over, but not touching, a saucepan of barely simmering water. Stir over the hot water until melted and smooth. Pour the chocolate mixture into a medium bowl and set aside.
Put the egg whites and cream of tartar in the large bowl of an electric mixer and beat on low speed until foamy. Increase the speed to medium-high and beat until soft peaks form. Reduce the speed to medium and slowly beat in the sugar, 1 tablespoon every 30 seconds.
Whisk the egg yolks, dissolved coffee, and flour into the chocolate mixture until blended thoroughly. Fold in half of the beaten egg whites, then fold in the remaining egg whites. Spread the filling evenly over the baked crust.
Bake just until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with a few crumbs clinging to it, and the top looks firm, about 15-20 minutes. Cool thoroughly in the pan on a wire rack. Use a sharp knife to cut into 12 to 16 individual bars.