Gluten Free Browned Butter Salted Caramel Brownies

Browned butter adds a wonderful depth of flavor to your baked goods.  The trick is to brown the milk solids in the butter to get a rich nutty flavor without burning it.  Use medium to low heat and keep a close eye on it.  It will bubble, hiss, and turn brown but you know it is ready when it quits hissing and turns eerily quiet.

3 ounces butter (6 tablespoons), unsalted

8 ounces good quality chocolate (the Sunspire chocolate chips come in a 9 ounce package, add remaining ounce into batter before spreading in pan)

3/4 cup sugar

2 large eggs

1 tablespoon cocoa

2 tablespoons corn starch

1/8 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup salted caramel sauce, recipe to follow

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line an 8 inch square pan with foil or parchment paper and spray lightly with cooking spray.  Brown butter over low to medium heat.  Remove from heat and add chocolate chips.  Retained heat should melt the chips, stir until smooth.  Stir in sugar.  Add eggs, one at a time.  Sift together cocoa powder, corn starch, and salt.  Add to chocolate mixture and beat vigorously for at least one minute.  Mixture should turn paler and be smooth looking.  If you do not beat batter long enough, it may break and become crumbly when you bake it.  Since there is no gluten from flour, better to err on the side of over-beating.  Fold in any remaining chocolate chips if desired.  Spread into prepared pan.  Pour caramel sauce in parallel lines on top batter.  Draw a knife through the batter and caramel sauce in perpendicular lines to get a marbled effect.  Bake for 30 minutes until brownies are set.

Salted Caramel Sauce

This makes extra sauce, it makes a delicious ice cream topping or dip for fresh fruit.

1 cup sugar

1/4 cup water

3 ounces butter (6 tablespoons)

1/2 cup heavy whipping cream

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

Use a large saucepan to make the caramel, it will bubble up and sputter when you add the butter and whipping cream and if your pan is too small, it may spill over or worse, burn you.  Mix sugar and water together and cook over medium heat.  You can stir it until it starts to boil, but once it does, do use a spoon to stir it any longer, only lightly swirl the pan if you have to distribute the heat.  The art in a caramel sauce comes from finding that fine line between deep caramel flavor and burned.  Once it starts to brown, it quickly goes from brown to burned, so watch it close and the second it gets dark enough, remove it from the heat and add the butter.  Stir to melt the butter and smooth the caramel. Place it back on the heat and bring it to a boil again, then add the cream and salt.  Mixture may seize up but will smooth out again as it heats.

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