What’s a girl to do when she is stuck inside during a snow storm? Well clearly make a batch of brownies that is so completely delicious that she can barely keep her hands off of them! Introducing my Blizzard Brownies. This is not your average brownie. It is studded with salty peanuts, has a layer of peanut butter frosting, and is topped off with chocolate ganache. Trust me when I tell you this might be the best brownie recipe on the face of the Earth.
¾ cup (1 ½ sticks) unsalted butter
10 ounces bittersweet and semisweet chocolate, chopped (I used a mixture of both)
1 ½ cups sugar
1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
¼ teaspoon salt
4 large eggs
1 cup all purpose flour
1 cup roasted salted peanuts, coarsely chopped
Frosting & Ganache Ingredients
1 cup chunky peanut butter (do not use natural or old-fashioned. I used Peter Pan)
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, divided, room temperature
¾ cup powdered sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 tablespoon whole milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preparation for brownies:
Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 325˚. Line 13x9x2-inch metal baking pan with foil, leaving long overhang, spray foil with Pam.
Place ¾ cup butter in heavy large saucepan. Add both chocolates; stir over low heat until smooth. Remove from heat. Whisk in sugar, vanilla, and salt, then eggs, 1 at a time. Fold in flour, then nuts. Spread in prepared pan. Bake until tester inserted into center come out with moist crumbs attached, about 30 minutes. Place pan on rack to cool.
Preparation for frosting & ganache:
Using electric mixer, beat peanut butter and ¼ cup butter in medium bowl to blend. Beat in powdered sugar, salt, and nutmeg, then milk and vanilla. Spread frosting over brownies.
Stir chocolate and ¼ cup butter in heavy small saucepan over low heat until smooth. Drop ganache all over frosting; spread until surface is covered. Chill until set, about 1 ½ hours.
Using foil as aid, transfer brownies to work surface. Cut into squares. Bring to room temperature before serving (with a big glass of milk!).
A version of this recipe originally appeared in Bon Appetit, January 2007