Baking with Applesauce Part 2

To say that I am an addict to chocolate would be an understatement. Is life even worth living without it? Really?
Honestly it’s this bad – so I bought a bar of sea salt dark chocolate at Superstore the other day. Theoretically it was supposed to be my final chocolate purchase before heading back to Calgary this coming Friday. I’m not sure who I was trying to kid, it was gone within 2 days, 3 tops. And so where do I find myself today? Shopper’s buying, you guessed it, more chocolate. It was even on sale 2 for $5. That’s how I will validate buying twice as much as I originally did a few days ago, at least it was on sale. Needless to say, I think I can make it until Friday. Hopefully.
It would be an interesting experiment to tally up my chocolate expenses for one year. Or perhaps terrifying would be a better descriptor.
Anyways, my chocolate obsession isn’t limited to Lindt Dark Chocolate Sea Salt and 70% bars (although I am a purist). 3 ingredient chocolate mousse – just eggs, sugar and dark chocolate? I’m a fan. Brownies? Sign me up. Vegan brownies? Hey vegans have the right to eat chocolate too. I don’t eat meat myself so I definitely understand how quality dark chocolate satisfies that savoury, umami-like craving. Call me crazy, but stop eating meat and you will see what I mean.
I don’t consume a lot of dairy or eggs so I could probably become vegan myself. If it wasn’t for the fact that the most chocolate out there (along with the majority of products on your grocery store shelves) contains (or even “may contain”) traces of dairy. Thankfully, these brownies just use cocoa powder so you don’t have to worry about that little dilemma. Just make sure you bake them enough, that’s the only dilemma I had. It was definitely my fault, not the recipe. If only I had some patience.
Any way you slice it (well “slice them” technically), these brownies are pretty decent for a recipe containing no eggs and no butter. And if they get my pass, they must be good right? Or is my opinion skewed because I will eat anything with even trace amounts of chocolate regardless? Come on, I do have standards!
Anyways, Happy Victoria Day to all of my fellow Canadians. I don’t know about you, but it’s at least 25 degrees here in Charlottetown. I’ll take it! Enjoy!
Vegan brownies
Vegan brownies

Vegan Brownies

adapted from AllRecipes

– 2 cups flour
– 1 1/2 cups sugar
– 3/4 cup cocoa
– 1 tsp. baking powder
– 1 cup water
– 1/2 cup oil
– 1/2 cup applesauce
– peanut butter (optional)

Super simple. Preheat your oven to 350 F. Mix together the dry ingredients, mix together the wet ingredients then combine everything until all of the flour, etc. is incorporated. Line a pan (around a 9″ square one works good, if you want thinner brownies, a 9″x13″) with parchment paper. Pour the batter into it and bake for at least 30 minutes (could be closer to 35-40 depending on your oven). If it still looks tacky in the center, keep the brownies in for longer. I was in a rush and definitely made the mistake of pulling them out too early. The outer edges will set before the middle. Don’t get me wrong, I love under-baked brownies but remember, these use cocoa rather than melted chocolate. And there’s no butter. Get where I am going with this? Basically they won’t firm up that much once they are cooled (because the ingredients aren’t solid to begin with).

What am I thinking?! I almost forgot the most important part. Excuse me while I back-track a bit. After you pan them but before you bake them, you can introduce some peanut butter to the party. Take little blobs of it and spoon them on top of the batter. You can add as much or as little as you like.Then use a knife to swirl it in. Totally optional, but a yummy option at that.

Vegan brownies
Vegan brownies
Vegan brownies
Vegan brownies

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