Sometimes there are days when it feels like the words are just pouring out of me and I am powerless to hold back the torrent.
On these days, every email that I send is at least three times as long as it needs to be. I find the 140-character limit on twitter to be unreasonably limiting. I ring my mother just for the sake of having someone to talk to and keep up a constant stream of chatter as soon as my boyfriend gets home from work.
On reflection, this is probably the result of a very busy sociable couple of weeks which have used up all my small talk and left me with a craving for the peace and quiet that I'm not going to get for another couple of weeks.
And so today, I will just leave you with these brownies and return to my own little world.
I'm not a big fan of desserts that taste too overwhelmingly boozy and so the rum is pretty subtle, more of a note of interest in the background than anything else. You can up the alcohol a bit if you're so inclined although it will make the resulting brownies slightly more delicate. Dark chocolate and ginger is always a winning combination - the little chunks of crystallised ginger are the real stars of these brownies and bring a touch of fire to each bite.
Rum and ginger brownies
Yield: 16 brownies
- 150g (2/3 cup) unsalted butter
- 125g (5 oz) dark chocolate, chopped
- 150g (2/3 cup) unrefined caster/granulated sugar
- 120g (2/3 cup) light brown soft sugar
- 4 medium eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 40g (just over 1/2 cup) cocoa powder
- 90g (2/3 cup + 1 tablespoon) flour (I used buckwheat flour but it has quite a distinctive taste so feel free to use whatever you prefer)
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 3 tablespoons finely chopped crystallised ginger (optional - my dad felt there was too much ginger in these brownies, I disagreed but I will leave you to make up your own mind about how much to use)
- 2 1/2 tablespoons dark rum
- Preheat the oven to 180C/350F. Crease a 23cm square baking tin.
- Melt together the butter and chocolate in the microwave or in a bowl over a pan of simmering water.
- When melted, take off the heat and scrape into a large bowl. Add the sugars and stir with a wooden spoon to combine.
- One at a time, add your eggs and continue to mix with your spoon. With the last egg, throw in the vanilla.
- Fold in the flour, cocoa, baking powder, ginger, nutmeg and salt until just combined. Finally, stir through 2 tablespoons of the chopped ginger and the rum. Pour into a baking tin, scatter with the rest of the ginger and bake for 20-22 minutes until the brownies are coming away from the side and feel set if you touch them gently on top. Allow to cool in the tin before cutting into squares.