These are the best brownies I've ever had. I'm not exaggerating. Moist and fudgy without being underdone and without the chemically taste and slightly weird texture of box mix (bleh). The recipe is, of course, from America's Test Kitchen. Don't be scared off by the amount of text below. They come together fast and easy.
Makes 64 1-inch square brownies. These brownies are very rich, so the recipe says to cut them into small squares for serving. (I am a glutton, so I cut them into more like 1.5-inch squares and got more like 30-40 brownies out of the batch)
Either Dutch processed or natural cocoa works well in this recipe. (I used my cheaper stuff to save money and they were still incredible!)
5 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, chopped (I was out of this and still wanted to make these, so I used a little less than 1 cup of chocolate chips. Chocolate chips tend to have a lower fat content to help them maintain their shape, so they're less ideal than true baking chocolates, but the recipe seemed to turn out more than fine.)
2 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
8 Tbsp (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into quarters
3 Tbsp cocoa powder
3 large eggs
1 1/4 cups sugar
2 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup all-purpose flour
Adjust the oven rack to the lower-middle position and heat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray an 8x8 baking pan with non-stick cooking spray. Fold two 16 inch pieces of foil lengthwise to measure 7 inches wide. Fit one sheet in the bottom of the greased pan, pushing it into the corners and up the sides of the pan (overhang will help in removal of baked brownies). Fit the second sheet in the pan in the same manner, perpendicular to the first sheet. Spray the foil with non-stick cooking spray. (Note: I forgot to spray the pan first, so I only sprayed the foil. No negative effects noticed and less clean up! YAY! Plus I was lazy and just fit one layer of my extra wide heavy duty foil into the pan rather than making the 2 perpendicular strips. Also seemed to work just fine.)
In a medium heatproof bowl set over pan of almost-simmering water, melt the chocolates and butter, stirring occasionally until mixture is smooth. Whisk in the cocoa until smooth. Set aside to cool slightly.
Whisk together the eggs, sugar, vanilla, and salt in a medium bowl until combined, about 15 seconds. Whisk the warm chocolate mixture into the egg mixture; then stir in the flour with a wooden spoon until just combined. Pour the mixture into the prepared pan, spread into corners and level surface with a rubber spatula; bake until slightly puffed and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with small amount of sticky crumbs clinging to it, 35-40 minutes. Cool on a wire rack to room temperature, about 2 hours. Remove the brownies from the pan using the foil handles and transfer to a cutting board. Cut into 1-inch (or more gluttonous like me) squares. (Do not cut the brownies until ready to serve; brownies can be wrapped in plastic and refrigerated up to 5 days.) (But you know, I was a rebel and cut them up last night anyway and the taste today is still TO DIE FOR.)