Dark Chocolate Ginger Brownies

Baby it’s cold outside! The second of two storms is currently battering the southern half of the British Isles. While gale force winds and squally showers are battering outside, baking makes indoors warm and cosy. Especially when the aroma of these Dark Chocolate Ginger Brownies escapes from the oven. A brilliant and tasty way to warm up the day.

FF Dark Chocolate Ginger Brownies
Dark Chocolate Ginger Brownies a deliciously warming treat.

Since discovering Sugar and Crumbs gingerbread flavour icing sugar, I have become a little obsessed with all things ginger flavoured. Wanting to create a winter spiced brownie, I decided to substitute the flavoured icing sugar for some of the treacly dark sugar in the recipe. Having been sent some Dark Chocolate Ginger Thins from Beech’s Chocolates, to try, I couldn’t resist adding some to the brownie batter. Resulting in a deep, dark chocolate brownie with a background warmth from the gingerbread sugar and nuggets of ginger chocolate studded throughout.

FF Dark Chocolate Ginger Brownies
Dark Chocolate Ginger Brownies perfect for sharing.

While not as dense, or fudgey as regular gingerbread and brownies, these squares are perfect as they are. Bordering on cake-like, yet not light and fluffy, these squares tick all the boxes. Sweet, but not overly so. Chocolatey, yet not cloying. Warming, without being overwhelming. Perfectly balanced flavours that satisfy with every bite.

FF Dark Chocolate Ginger Brownies

    Dark Chocolate Ginger Brownies a delicious comforting treat.

So easy to make and bake, these brownies also make a delicious edible gift. Ensure the icing is set, then pop a few into a pretty tin, or cellophane bag tied with ribbon. All food tastes better when shared. Homemade treats have the extra luxury of love mixed into them. Now that is something that cannot be bought!

Recipe: Dark Chocolate Ginger Brownies makes 15

150g/5oz Unsalted Butter

225g/8oz Dark Brown Muscavado Sugar

50g/2oz Gingerbread Icing Sugar available from Sugar and Crumbs see *note

1/8tsp Salt – I use Maldon

50g/2oz Cocoa Powder – I use Callebaut

150g/5oz Plain White Flour

1/2tsp Sodium Bicarbonate

4 Large Free Range Eggs

1tsp Vanilla Extract – I use Nielsen-Massey

100g/4oz Dark Chocolate Ginger Thins – available from Beech’s Fine Chocolates

*note – if flavoured icing sugar is unavailable use 275g/10oz of D/B Muscavado sugar and add 2tsp of ground ginger to the sieved flour.

For the icing:

100g/4oz Gingerbread Flavour Icing Sugar – if not available use plain icing sugar.

Method: Preheat the oven to 180C/160C fan, gas mark 4

You will need a 28cm x 20cm x 5cm (12″ x 8″ x “2) traybake tin lined with aluminium foil.

  • First add the butter, both types of sugar and salt to a heavy bottomed large saucepan. Place over a medium heat and stir constantly until the butter is melted.
  • Take the pan off the heat and add the cocoa powder, stirring until it is thoroughly combined. Set the saucepan to one side to cool slightly.
  • While the pan is cooling, crack the eggs into a jug, add the vanilla extract and whisk lightly to combine – liquid ingredients.
  • Next sift the flour and sodium bicarb. into the saucepan. Stir to combine. The mixture will be quite stiff, that is normal.
  • Now pour the liquid ingredients into the saucepan and stir thoroughly until the brownie batter is thoroughly combined.
  • Roughly chop the ginger chocolate and add to the saucepan. Stir a couple of times to distribute evenly.
  • Finally pour the brownie batter into the prepared tin. Give the tin a couple of sharp raps against the work top. This will bring any bubbles to the surface.
FF Dark Chocolate Ginger Brownies
Making the brownie batter and filling the tin.
  • Place the tin in the centre of the oven and bake for 20-25 minutes. Halfway through the baking time, open the oven door and rap the tin against the shelf. This really helps to stop the brownies becoming too airy and cake-like.
  • The brownies are baked when the top is set and there is not hint of wobble in the centre.
  • Once baked, remove the tin from the oven and allow the brownies to completely cool in the tin.
FF Dark Chocolate Ginger Brownies
Dark Chocolate Ginger Brownies baked and cooling in the tin.
  • While the brownies are cooling, make the gingerbread icing.
  • First, sift the icing sugar into a medium sized bowl, then add a teaspoon of water. Stir, adding extra water, drop by drop, until you have a thick, drizzling consistency.
  • Spoon the icing into a small piping bag. Alternatively, cover the bowl with cling film and you can use a spoon to drizzle the icing.
  • When the brownies are completely cooled, lift the entire slab from the tin, using the foil to help. Peel the foil carefully away from the baked brownie and place on to a large piece of baking parchment. Now cut the brownie into 15 equal sized squares. First cutting across the width, diving into 3 and then cutting across at 5 equal intervals to create 15 individual brownie squares. Spread the squares out so that each one can be iced individually.
  • Next, snip the end from your piping bag to leave a very small hole. Pipe diagonal lines across each brownie, or lightly drizzle the icing using a teaspoon.
FF Dark Chocolate Ginger Brownies
Dark Chocolate Ginger Brownies finished with piped icing.

Leave the icing to set before serving, or storing in an airtight container for up to 5 days.

FF Dark Chocolate Ginger Brownies
Dark Chocolate Ginger Brownies the piped icing gives them a professional finish.

These Brownies are delicious served just as they are, with a hot drink and a smile. However, if you really want to turn them into a fantastic dessert, warm briefly (10 seconds in the microwave) and serve with a scoop of you favourite ice cream!

If you have enjoyed these Dark Chocolate Ginger Brownies then you may like these too:

Chocolate Christmas Pudding Cookies

FF Dark Chocolate Ginger Brownies
Chocolate Christmas Pudding Cookies

Gingerbread Frosted Ginger Christmas Cupcakes

FF Dark Chocolate Ginger Brownies
Gingerbread Frosted Ginger Christmas Cupcakes

Chocolate Sparkle Cake

FF Dark Chocolate Ginger Brownies
Chocolate Sparkle Cake

Whether you bake these Dark Chocolate Ginger Brownies as a treat for yourself and you family, or to take into school or work to share with friends, they are sure to be a big hit. Homemade bakes taste infinitely better, unless you live close to a great bakery. Sharing our bakes shows others that they are valued in our lives. Regardless of their situation, someone has thought of them. I personally, cannot think of a better reason to get in the kitchen and bake!

Whatever you are creating, making and baking in your kitchen, have fun and remember to stir some extra love in.

Sammie xx

Beech’s Chocolates sent me the dark chocolate ginger thins to try. This is not a sponsored post. All opinions, views, photographs and content are my own. Please see my Disclosure Policy.

 

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Moroccan Lamb Stew

I have a recipe to share with you today that is unbelievably delicious. My Moroccan Lamb Stew served with Lime Couscous.

MD Morrocan Lamb Stew
Morrocan Lamb Stew slow cooked tender lamb in a slightly spicy, fruity sauce.

After cooking my Slow Roasted Lamb Shoulder for Sunday lunch, I had plenty of leftover meat. In fact I’d actually cooked two whole lamb shoulders to make absolutely certain that I’d have enough meat for this Moroccan Lamb Stew.

You could absolutely use fresh diced lamb for this recipe, but there is something distinctly delicious about meat that has been slow cooked on the bone. So much more flavour and that was what I wanted for this dish.

Morrocan Lamb Stew flavored with middle eastern spices.
Moroccan Lamb Stew flavored with middle eastern spices.

Having never cooked a dish like this before, I knew I was taking a gamble as to whether the children would eat it. They aren’t fussy and eat a wide range of foods, yet I know I wouldn’t have eaten this as a child.

Shame on me!

Each of them completely cleared their plate, loved this AND they’d figured out that I’d added dates to the stew!! They loved the gentle, yet spicey and fruity flavour of the Moroccan Lamb Stew served with the Lime Couscous.

Again shame on me for underestimating their appreciation of delicious food!

MD Morrocan Lamb Stew
Moroccan Lamb Stew meltingly tender lamb in a deliciously fragrant sauce.

Using leftover roast lamb made this dish incredibly easy to put together. Even though the lamb was pre cooked I still let this stew bubble and simmer away on a very low heat for a few hours. This didn’t make the lamb tough or dry. It resulted in fragrantly spiced lamb, that was so melt-in-the-mouth tender.

MD Morrocan Lamb Stew
Harissa and Medjool Dates create the fruity and spicey flavours in this dish.

I absolutely adore Dates and these Medjool Dates from The Medjool Date Co. are so completely delicious, I find that I’m popping them in my mouth, when I should be cooking with them. Oops!

During the slow cooking of this Moroccan Lamb Stew the Medjool Dates completely break down and become part of the sauce. They are not an overwhelming flavour, but instead add a fruity sweetness that you can’t quite put your finger on, yet simply know it tastes wonderful.

This recipe is a brilliant way to create another fantastic dish from leftover roast lamb.

Recipe: Moroccan Lamb Stew serves 4-6

650g/1.5lbs Leftover Roast Lamb – skin and bone removed

2tbsp Olive Oil

1 Large Onion

3 Medium Carrots

2 Celery Sticks

2tsp Harrisa Paste

6 Medjool Dates – stones removed and finely diced

1 Beef Stock Cube

Salt and Pepper to season

2tsp Corn flour (also called corn starch)

Method: Use a large heavy based pan for this recipe.

  • Add the oil to the pan over a medium heat.
  • Finely chop the onion and sauté in the pan, stirring frequently, until softened.
  • Chop the carrots and celery into 1cm pieces, add to the sautéed onion in the pan and cook until just softened over a low heat.
  • Whilst the vegetables are slowly cooking prepare the lamb.
  • Remove any skin from the lamb and cut into 5cm chunks, obviously from a leftover roast there will be smaller pieces as well, that’s fine they all go into the stew!
  • Add the lamb to the pan and add the Harrisa paste and chopped Dates.
  • Stir to mix everything together.
  • Cover with hot water from the kettle.
  • Add a pinch of sea salt and some freshly ground black pepper.
  • Cover with a lid and leave on a very low heat for 5 hours.
  • After the cooking time has elapsed taste for seasoning – add more salt/pepper as necessary.
  • Mix the corn flour with 20mls of cold water to form a slurry.
  • Add the cornflour slurry to the Moroccan Lamb Stew. Stir well and increase the heat to medium.
  • Allow the corn flour to thicken the sauce (which naturally reduces during the long cooking period) and cook for five minutes.
  • Serve with Lime Couscous.
MD Morrocan Lamb Stew
Moroccan Lamb Stew a deliciously easy dish to make.

This is a perfect dish to make for when friends/family are visiting or staying, especially if they have a long journey. The stew will happily sit over a very low heat until your guests arrive and the Lime Couscous  takes moments to make, leaving you free to greet and settle your guests.

For me, this dish is fantastic as I can get dinner ready and cooking early in the day (see Living With Seizures ) and then if my body allows I can bake some delicious treats for my family and friends.

In fact the first time I made this Moroccan Lamb Stew I was so worried that it wouldn’t be eaten, I made a pudding. Now just to be clear, I bake quite a bit, when I am able to – but we rarely have dessert after dinner. Honestly I’m talking high days and holidays are the only time I make pudding. In fact I didn’t even make a dessert for Easter Sunday. On this occasion however, I made an apple tart – it’ll be on here very soon.

Can you imagine the children and my hubby’s faces when they saw the apple tart 😉! We all ate dinner and then had pudding, such piggies! If my husband had the choice, we would have pudding every day. After that day a tradition was started, when we have Moroccan Lamb Stew for dinner, there must be pudding for afters. I knew I should have hidden the apple tart!!!!

Do you like turning leftovers into another fabulous dish?

There will be more ‘leftovers’ recipes coming up on this blog. In the meantime if you enjoyed the Moroccan Lamb Stew I’m sure you’d like these:

Roast Chicken Noodle Soup

MD Roast Chicken Noodle Soup
Roast Chicken Noodle Soup a perfect way to make your roast chicken go further.

Slow Rosted Lamb Shoulder

GF Slow Roasted Lamb Shoulder
Slow Roasted Lamb Shoulder

Redcurrant Jelly Glazed Roast Lamb

GF Redcurrant Jelly Glazed Roast Lamb
Redcurrant Jelly Glazed Roast Lamb

Whatever you are cooking, baking or making I love seeing your results. Please pop a photo on Twitter/Instagram and tag me in. You can also leave me a comment if you try one of my recipes in the comment section.

Have fun whilst you are in the kitchen preparing a feast!

Sammie xx

@sammiefeasting Twitter/Instagram

Graig Farm provided the lamb for this recipe and The Medjool Date Co. provided the Dates. I was not paid to write this post. All opinions, recipes, content and photographs are my own. Please see my Disclosure Policy.

 

 

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