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Ganache Topped Truffle Brownies

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These rich, Ganache Topped Truffle Brownies are the perfect Valentine’s Day treat. Or serve them up to your gal pals and celebrate Galentine’s Day!

Today I’m celebrating Galentine’s Day, a marvelous faux holiday. This day is all about celebrating, supporting, and encouraging the ladies in your life. Thanks to my blogger friends, Courtney of NeighborFood and Nancy of Gotta Get Baked, for organizing this group of terrific women to honor all our gal pals.

Ganache Topped Truffle Brownies on a white ceramic plate

Ganache Topped Truffle Brownies

This post was first shared shortly after my mother’s death in 2015.

My mom liked just a little nibble of something sweet after dinner. We always had a bowl of candied nuts or chocolate bonbons on the kitchen counter. Just  a little a bite or two with a cup of coffee would satisfy her sweet tooth. You can see from whom I inherited this trait! She’d often eat a sliver of pumpkin pie for breakfast the day after Thanksgiving. So if I could, I would share these Ganache Topped Chocolate Brownies with her.

Tips for Making the Best Fudgy Brownies

How to Melt Chocolate

  • PRO-Tip: To melt chocolate, the microwave is a super easy option. But be cautious, as overheating the chocolate can become thick and lumpy.
  • A top source recommends microwaving at 20% power, but that’s when you want to “temper” the chocolate to prevent a bloom or whitish cast when it cools. This is important for candy making but not so much for brownies or ganache.
  • Microwaving at 50% for short increments works well. Zap for 15-30 seconds, stir and repeat until chocolate is smooth and melted. 
  • Tiny bits of chocolate will melt from the residual heat.
  • Personally, I microwave at full power because I’m impatient, but do it in short increments. Be very mindful if you do this as chocolate is expensive!
  • I keep a stack of Ghirardelli bars in my pantry as it’s better than using chocolate chips, but not overly expensive if you watch for sales.
  • Chocolate chips often have additives to help them keep their shape, although they can be used in a pinch.

How to Make Fudgy Brownies Not Cakey Brownies

  • My family prefers a chewy fudgy browning instead of a lighter cake like brownie. As they are all chocoholics, they wouldn’t pass up the latter if that was the only option, LOL.
  • Look at the recipe title and photos to see the description and texture for your first clues.
  • PRO-Tip: Fudgy brownies will have a higher fat to flour ratio. So the amount of butter and chocolate compared with flour will be higher than in a cake-like brownie.
  • Even though eggs have fat in the yolks, the sugar and egg amounts will not change.
  • Cakey brownies will often have a leavener like baking powder to help make a lighter texture.
  • Gently mixing in the flour helps not to overactive the gluten and helps keep the brownies fudgy. Do not use a mixer to incorporate the flour
A wedge of Ganache Topped Truffle Brownies on a square white plate

Celebrating the Life of My Mom

Today is usually set aside for a French Fridays with Dorie post. But instead, I’m here to honor my dear mom. She’s been in a memory unit for a number of years, and my dad joined her about a year and a half ago. She’d been plugging along, content and healthy for the most part. My dad spends his free time sitting with her, rubbing her head and just plain adoring her.

But last week my chic and talented mother had a stroke….and the end is near. My father, who has worshiped his wife of 55+ years, is devastated and on Wednesday, I flew out to be with them and my sister, Maddy.

A gifted artist and musician, my mother filled our home with the sonatas of Bach and covered our walls with paintings and other treasures from friends and family. She loved the clean lines of Danish modern and shied away from anything fussy or froufrou.

A fashionista at heart, she combed the sales racks for designer deals and shared the couture gems she’d unearth at the famous Aspen thrift shop with her girlfriends. My mom took comfort in cooking and dazzled our family with recipes from the New York Times Cookbook as well as handwritten recipe cards from her bridge club friends.

Spiritual and prayerful, she attended daily Mass, would pull out her rosary when needed (like when bears walked through our campsite at Glacier National Park!) and opened our home to those who needed a meal over the holidays.

Gretchen adored her children and grandchildren and often rocked my colicky babies so I could catch a few winks. She lived a long fruitful life, full of loyal friends, a loving family, laughter, and song. A life lived to the fullest. Should we all be so lucky.

These rich, Ganache Topped Truffle Brownies are the perfect treat for when those chocolate cravings hit!

Memories of a Life Well Lived

3 sisters with parents

Busy with three squirmy children…Mary, Katie and me

Family photo with puppy along the Des Moines River

With our new pup, Rufus, and her four daughters…Maddy has joined the family

Mom and Rufus

A beauty, inside and out…

calligrapher

Working on her calligraphy…Cheers, Gretchen!

Cheers, dear Gretchen!

Mom and Martha

With her dearest friend, her sister, Martha…in Italy, Russia or Turkey…

Mom and dad 2015

Snuggling with her true love, my dad…a week before her stroke.

More Galentine’s Day Recipes:

Ganache Topped Truffle Brownies pinterest collage
Ganache Topped Truffle Brownies

Ganache Topped Truffle Brownies

A rich, decadent brownie recipe perfect for any occasion. Adapted from a Dan Smith and Stew McDonagh recipe

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Yield 8 servings

Ingredients

Brownies:

  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 3 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
  • 1/2 cup flour

Ganache:

  • 3 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, chopped
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350º. Grease 8-inch cake pan. Line with parchment and grease top of parchment. Or line the pan with non-stick foil. Set aside.
  2. Beat eggs and salt together with hand held electric mixer till frothy. Add sugar and beat till thick and pale yellow, 2 to 3 minutes. Add vanilla and beat till combined.
  3. Microwave butter and chocolate for about a minute. Stir and microwave in 15-30 second increments till chocolate is melted and smooth. With mixer running, slowly add melted chocolate to egg mixture. Add flour and beat till just incorporated, less than a minute. Scrape down sides as necessary.
  4. Bake 20 minutes till the center is barely set. Remove from oven and cool on rack. Make ganache.
  5. Melt chocolate and cream in microwave, about one minute on high. Stir till smooth and chips are completely melted. Pour on cooled brownies. Let chill in fridge.
  6. Before serving, place brownies in the freezer for at least 30 minutes for easier cutting. Let slices come to room temperature before serving.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

8

Serving Size:

1 slice

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 394Total Fat: 24gSaturated Fat: 15gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 86mgSodium: 247mgCarbohydrates: 41gFiber: 3gSugar: 31gProtein: 5g

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