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Over the top brownies

Sunday, February 3, 2013

After one of my classmates brought minced pies to class before Christmas, my tap instructor casually mentioned the brownies I once brought to one of his year-end parties. Well, I can take a hint, so I said I would make him some for Chinese New Year, which is next Sunday. But since I had some time last week and didn't know if I would have any this week, he got his gift a little early.
These are rich Kahlúa brownies, but what's good about them is that they are sourdough brownies.
The brownies are a little extravagant in that they contain a little more Kahlúa than necessary (I found out that you can have too much!), and they have several types of chocolate in them, but I call them Over The Top after a tap step we were taught a couple of weeks ago. Clumsy me kept tripping over my own feet in the beginning but I'm getting the hang of it now. 
Though he liked them, the brownies did not make my instructor lighten up on us. He still drilled us until we flopped down in exhaustion. Not complaining, just saying.
Cut brownies when cold but eat them when they are at room temperature
I started out with the sourdough brownie recipe from Wild Yeast by way of The Gingered Whisk and then made a few changes along the way to incorporate the flavours I wanted. Some are just simple substitutions, like dark palm sugar for caster (granulated sugar), while the other changes are additional ingredients. Also, I mixed the batter in just one saucepan, so less washing up. 
As for the Kahlúa, I used two tablespoons at first but after tasting the batter, I didn't think there was enough and added another scant tablespoon. That took it over the top though, so next time, I will use the lesser amount.
Some brownies are good eaten cold, but I found these too dense and quite bland straight out of the fridge. They're easier to cut when cold, but wait till they come to room temperature to eat. The texture is much more desirable and the flavour certainly comes through better. I also think the flavour develops over a few days, which is usually the case with anything sourdough. 
Dust the tops with cocoa powder if desired
Over The Top Chocolate Kahlúa Sourdough Brownies
Makes 20 brownies

130g baking chocolate, chopped
110g unsalted butter, cut into pieces
200g palm sugar
½ tsp salt
1 tsp instant coffee
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp Kahlúa
1 egg, at room temperature
30g cocoa powder, sifted
110g refreshed 100% hydration sourdough starter
2 tbsp all-purpose flour (approximate)
2 tbsp medium chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 170°C.
Line an 18cm square cake pan with foil. Grease the foil.
In a saucepan, melt the chocolate and butter, stirring (use a whisk) the mixture constantly. This will take a minute or so. Take the pan off the heat.
Add sugar, salt and instant coffee. Stir until sugar dissolves. By this time, the mixture will have cooled slightly.
Add vanilla extract and Kahlúa.
Whisk in the egg until well blended. Add the cocoa powder and starter and stir gently until everything is completely incorporated. The batter should have the texture of soft pancake batter. If it seems too runny, add all-purpose flour a little at a time.
Stir in the chocolate chips.
Pour batter into the prepared pan and bake for about 40 minutes, turning the pan halfway through, or until a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out with just a few crumbs on it.
Cool in the pan, 20 minutes. Lift the foil out and allow to cool completely on a wire rack. If desired, brush Kahlúa on the brownies and/or dust with cocoa powder. Cut into 20 pieces. Refrigerate for about 30 minutes to make slicing easier. Allow to come to room temperature before eating. Best eaten a day later.


  1. Interesting recipe! I didn't know you can use sour dough to bake brownies!

  2. Just looking for sourdough recipes now and this one rocks! Cheers for sharing :)

  3. Oh yay! Adding kahlua and coffee to these brownies is a fantastic idea, I bet they were amazing! :)


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