Thursday, April 2, 2009

Black Beans in My Chocolate

Here is my daring recipe of the month, although I made it last month. I found this recipe at Baking and Boys! and had it for a while before I finally got up the nerve to try it. I was afraid that it would taste so much like beans, but I really wanted to like it. I decided to make it while my kids were in school so they wouldn’t see the secret ingredients. After I mixed it up and put it in the oven, I thought I’d be brave and try a little from the bowl. I still was scared and even closed my eyes while putting it in my mouth. (Silly, huh?) It wasn’t bad. It was great, but I couldn’t taste beans. So I had another lick with a bit more batter. Not bad, but this time, I had some bean skin on my tongue. I had higher hopes for the baked product. After it was done, I cut a small piece and ate it. It wasn’t wonderful, but not bad and definitely didn’t taste at all like beans or something strange. But then I felt the bean skin in my mouth again. I took a few more bites and with almost every bite, I had to take bean skin out of my mouth. Not very appetizing to me.

When the kids came home, Alex and Elisa wanted brownies so they each got a piece and neither one of them complained. I asked how they liked it and Alex said it was pretty good and Elisa said it was just okay. I asked them to guess the secret ingredient. They both seemed worried. Secret ingredient? Alex said, “Onions? No, beans.” I asked him how he knew and he said that he felt the bean skin in his mouth, but didn’t know what it was. They didn’t want more after they found out.

The next day, we had a big portion of the brownies left over so I told the kids they could take the rest to school and share it with their friends to see what they thought. Alex didn’t want to, but Elisa took the rest of them. She shared with a bunch of friends who liked it. When they found out there were beans in them, they couldn’t believe it, but she said that no one complained about bean skin.

While it was a fun experiment, I won’t be making them again. I don’t know if I had a food processor if it would have chopped up the skins enough to not be a problem (I used my tiny mini-processor and tried to pulse it to death), but it wasn’t really good enough for me to bother with it again. Maybe one of you will like it though. Anyone brave enough to try? (After my not-raving review)

Low-Fat Brownies with Black Beans

1 c. flour
1 t. baking soda
1/2 t. salt
1/3 c. cocoa powder
2/3 c. brown sugar
2/3 c. granulated sugar
1/2 c. semi sweet chocolate chips (can omit for even less fat)
1/2 c. toasted, chopped walnuts (can omit for even less fat)
3 eggs or 3/4 c. Egg Beaters
1 t. vanilla Almost

Almost 2/3 c. bean puree (directions below)

Combine dry ingredients in medium size bowl. Whisk eggs and vanilla in small bowl. Add it to dry ingredients and mix together.

Put 2 tablespoons canola oil in liquid measuring cup, to it add black bean puree to equal 2/3 cup the wet ingredients into the dry until combined. Spread batter in a 9x13 baking dish lined with foil and sprayed with cooking spray. Bake in 350 degree oven for about 22 minutes, until a toothpick inserted comes out mostly clean. Cool brownies on wire rack until completely cool. Remove from pan using foil edges and cut to desired sizes.

*Black Bean Puree: Take 1 can of black beans, including the liquid and puree in food processor or blender until smooth and creamy. (I rinsed and drained the beans and added just enough fresh water to blend because I don't like the liquid in the bean cans.)

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