I was once again watching America's Test Kitchen (It's on Saturday on PBS at noon in case you want to tune in) and saw an episode about how to make the perfect homemade brownies! They did a blind taste test to see if people preferred homemade to box mix brownies, and surprisingly most people preferred the box mix! The comments were mainly that they liked the chocolate flavor of the homemade, but preferred the texture of the box mix because they are chewy. So the cooks in America's Test Kitchen set out to find a version that has the same texture as the box mix but the rich flavor of homemade, and they did! They found to get the chewy texture you need to use twice as much oil (unsaturated fat) as butter (saturated fat). I'm glad they know what they're doing, because I wouldn't have known that! These brownies are SO good and I'm sure you'll love them :).
For the chewiest texture, it is important to let the brownies cool thoroughly before cutting. While any high-quality chocolate can be used in this recipe, the preferred brands of bittersweet chocolate are Callebaut Intense Dark Chocolate L-60-40NV and Ghirardelli Bittersweet Chocolate Baking Bar. The preferred brand of unsweetened chocolate is Scharffen Berger. Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 days.
1/3 cup Dutch processed cocoa (worth the extra $$$ at the grocery store!!)
1 1/2 teaspoons instant espresso or coffee (optional, enhances chocolate flavor)
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons boiling water
2 ounces unsweetened chocolate , finely chopped (see note at top)
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter , melted
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups (17 1/2 ounces) sugar
1 3/4 cups (8 3/4 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon table salt
6 ounces bittersweet chocolate , cut into 1/2-inch pieces (see note)