JDIM Bakes: Yummy Chocolate brownies recipe

How are we all getting on with the last minutes preparations for Christmas! I know I’m definitely not ready! 

If you are thinking of what dessert to make for Christmas that isn’t your usually fruit cake or Christmas pudding or even ginger bread men, you should totally try this brownie recipe.

I’m often reluctant to share recipes because I’m skeptical someone would try it and think it’s not as nice as I claim it to be. However… I have come to accept that people are entitled to their opinions and so am I. On that note, in my opinion, this recipe makes very yummy brownies. They are not studgy, hard or cakey, so if you do not like very moist brownies then this recipe is not for you. These brownies simply melt in your mouth with every bite.  This means that find yourself eating more and more and more! I assure you that your waistline won’t thank you, but it’s yummy and so worth it as a cheat snack or a quick dessert to make when you have guests coming over.

I have made them so many times, particularly as part of a three course meal for friends who visit, and they have loved them. I also recently took a batch to a birthday party and of the three desserts I baked, these brownies were the first to run out with gushing positive compliments.

I will stop going on about how great they are and just share the recipe! Take this as a Christmas present from me to you!

This recipe is adapted from my take on trying various brownie recipes.

Yummy melt in the mouth chocolate brownies 

Ingredients 

  • 3 eggs
  • 240 grams caster sugar
  • 180g dark chocolate 
  • 180g butter
  • 100g plain flour
  • 100g white chocolate (or 50g white chocolate and 50g dark chocolate)

Method

  1. Preheat your oven to 160C for fan ovens, 180C otherwise. Also line your brownie tin. I used a 34 X 20cm tin.
  2. Break your dark chocolate into small pieces and place in a microwaveable bowl with all of the butter. Cover the bowl with cling film and put it in the microwave for two minutes. Use a spatula or other suitable crockery to mix the chocolate with the melted butter, this should help the rest of the chocolate melt. Leave aside to cool.
  3. Crack your eggs into a separate clean and dry bowl and pour in the caster sugar. Whisk the two together at high speed until it looks thick and the colour of the mixture is paler than you started. This is to incorporate a lot of air into your brownie mixture. This can take some time. If when you switch off your whisker, the drops of the sugar and egg mixture leaves a trail for a few seconds, you can stop whisking then.
  4. Break your white chocolate into a small pieces in a separate bowl. By preference, I use only white chocolate because I like the colour contrast between the dark chocolate for the brownies and the white chocolate inside the brownies. You could choose to use half milk chocolate and half white chocolate if you wish.
  5. Carefully pour your melted butter and dark chocolate mixture from step 2 above into the egg sugar mixture and mix it gently, being careful not to knock out all the air you incorpirated in step 3. After incorporating the two mixtures, the colours should be like a dull milk chocolate shade.
  6. Incorporate the sifted flour into the mixture, being careful not to knock out too much air.
  7. Incorporate the broken pieces of white chocolate (or half and half milk and white chocolate).
  8. Carefully pour your mixture into a brownie tin and bake in the middle shelf for 25 minutes.
  9. Once ready, the top of the brownie should be shinny with some cracks. Leave it to cool completely before cutting.

Enjoy your brownie by itself, or warm with some good quality vanilla icecream.

Please let me know how you get on, whether or not you agree with me that they are yummy!



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The ‘M’ word

This is every mum or mum-to-be least favourite word to talk about, but it is necessary for people to know that these things happen and if it happens to them, it is not because they did something wrong.

The M word I mean in this context is miscarriage. A miscarriage is the loss of a pregnancy during the first 23 weeks. Before I got pregnant, I used to think miscarriages were very rare and only women with certain pasts (e.g previous abortions) or unhealthy habits (e.g chain smoking, drug addicts and heavy drinkers) were victims of miscarriages. 

It was not until I started bleeding a few weeks into my then pregnancy that I wondered why this was happening to me. My midwife, family doctor and early pregnancy nurses and doctors explained that it just happens and no one knows why. I did some more research and I was none the wiser as to why this had to happen to me. So after loads of tears and days of crying, I accepted my faith and we tried again, which thankfully lead to our now healthy and full of energy son.

So what did I find when I did my research? (Source: http://www.nhs.uk)

1. The cause of a miscarriage is not always known, particularly in early pregnancy. 

2. In majority of the cases, it is not caused by what the mum has done.

3. It’s thought most miscarriages are caused by abnormal chromosomes in the baby. Chromosomes are genetic “building blocks” that guide the development of a baby. If a baby has too many or not enough chromosomes, it won’t develop properly.

4. If a miscarriage happens during the second trimester of pregnancy (between weeks 14 and 26), it’s sometimes the result of an underlying health condition in the mother.

5. For most women, a miscarriage is a one-off event and they go on to have a successful pregnancy in the future.

6. Most miscarriages cannot be prevented but in the UK, if a woman has more than 3 miscarriages, the doctors try to see if any medication can help her carry her next pregnancy to term.

Most women don’t share or are encouraged not to share the news about their pregnancies in the first 12 weeks as miscarriage is very common during the first 12 weeks. It is a lot easier not to share the news then as imagine how painful it would be having to explain to all those people why there is no baby 9 months later or why you are not yet showing a few months later. 

In addition, what tends to happen is that once a woman experiences one or more miscarriages, she gets anxious in future pregnancies, remembering her past experiences. It is very sad and unfortunately, I have no tips on how to manage this as it is simply easier said than done. However, as a Christian, I know I can always go to God in prayer and live by faith and his words and that gives me comfort. 

I also know that a lot of women have miscarriage scares during their pregnancies as a member of BabyCentre’s birthboards, I know first hand that a few peoples pregnancies end in miscarriages, a few people have miscarriage scares and the majority of people have healthy pregnancies. However, there is always that one woman who posts on the birthboards about how she doesn’t like hearing about the losses and will stop reading the loss posts. I mean, I am sure the ladies posting about their losses don’t like posting about the fact they have just lost their pregnancy and they aren’t even asking for sympathy, they are just letting you know why they will no longer be active on the board and in most cases they never come back to comment, so saying that, I feel it is very insensitive.

Okay, rant over.

If you know anyone who has suffered from a miscarriage recently, give them your love. Don’t tell them they are lucky that it was earlier rather than later, or that it’s only been a few weeks, or that they escaped having an incompletely formed child. It may be tempting and it may make sense for you to say that or even logical, but please, “I’m sorry for your loss.” will do. 

So now that I have explained that these things happen, I would like you to know that the aim of this blog post was not to spread fear but to give you facts. The chances of having a successful pregnancy is very high, but at the same time, a few peoples pregnancies tend to lead to a miscarriage. Women who have had miscarriages can but have healthy babies. Stay healthy, take your vitamins and seek help when in doubt!

About ‘Just do it mum’

I became a mum three months shy of two years ago and it has been the most exciting, interesting, fulfilling but yet challenging time of my life. No one could have prepared me for a life of motherhood. However, ploughing through the internet and finding articles or blogs that were relevant to whatever my current situation was, has been invaluable. As working mums, the challenges we face is endless. From finding appropriate childcare to balancing your life at home and at work while being effective at both (not even aiming for perfection). 

To this end, my aim is to contribute to this growing resource with the hope that someone some where will be inspired by my experiences and that of other mums, which I will also be sharing on this blog. My aim is to encourage all women reading this blog to give them that additional push we sometimes need to move on to the next level of our aspirations. In doing this, I know I will also be inspiring myself. 

To any man reading this, you also have a role to play so don’t close this page just yet. Our blogs will give you a snippet into what matters to some women and how our minds sometimes work. I am also hoping that this blog will give you the tools you may need to encourage a loved one, be it a friend, wife, mum or daughter. 

In my short few years on earth,  I am yet to find someone who does not want to be successful. Success isn’t always defined by how rich you are in monetary terms. I use successful in the above sentence to mean what success means to you. In my experience, I have found that there is a big team behind every successful person and the most effective of which are not on your ‘payroll’. That is, your biggest cheerleaders are often spurring you on because they love you not because they have to. This ranges from our families to friends and colleagues (sometimes). This is not to say one shouldn’t be cautious or to let your guard down. As with everything, wisdom is required. 

In addition,, as a Christian who tries to live her life as Christ would want me to, a lot of my beliefs are based on the bible. On this note, please note that I will not knowingly promote anything that is illegal, immoral or unethical as a way to get ahead. 

I should end this post by saying I do not claim to know it all. I currently live my life aiming for success as defined by own criteria, excelling in some cases and making mistakes in other cases. However, one thing is certain, I learn from my mistakes (eventually!). I still have a whole lot to learn and this is what makes everyday exciting to me. I hope you will share your experiences with us as well via your comments.

Cheers to years and a future of good motivational blogs.

‘Just do it mum’