On of my favorite smells in the entire world is red wine reducing on the stove. It reminds of bistros in Paris and lazy winter evenings. Mr. Fits and I spent our anniversary in Paris a few years ago. We ended up at a small cafe in the Bastille District eating Steak Frites and sharing a bottle of wine. We finished the meal by sharing a dense piece of chocolate cake. As we sat on the side walk patio, watching the night go by, chatting and laughing, I remember feeling so grateful that this was the man that I got to spend my life with. These brownies remind me of that night, the wine, the chocolate and the love of my life.
Red wine is a great addition to baked goods and the alcohol cooks off completely so you have nothing to worry about while serving these to under aged guests.
Cabernet Cherry Brownies
¾ cup fresh bing cherries, pitted and chopped
1 cup red wine
¾ cup butter (1 ½ sticks) unsalted butter
8 ounces unsweetened baking chocolate
1 tbs instant coffee powder
4 large eggs
3 1/2 cups sugar
2 cups sifted all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 375.
In a pot over medium/high heat, bring the cherries and the wine to a simmer, stiring occasionally. Allow to reduce by half, the cherries and wine will amount to a little less than one cup combined.
Combine the butter, chocolate and coffee powder in a microwave safe bowl. If you hate coffee, don’t be affriad of this ingredient. Coffee, in small doses, is widely known in the baking world to intensify the flavor of chocolate without leaving any of it’s own flavor behind. Microwave on high for 20 seconds, stir and repeat until melted and combined.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat eggs and sugar, at high speed for 5 minutes. I recently learned that beating the eggs and sugar together is what gives brownies that beautiful crust on top. Reduce speed to low, and add the chocolate mixture then beat until combined. Slowly add flour and beat until combined, but don’t over mix. Stir in chocolate chips and reduced wine. Pour the batter into a greased 9×13 glass baking dish. Bake until the edges start to pull away from the pan and the center is no longer wobbly, about 35 minutes.