wholewheat chocolate brownie

19th February 2010

I love brownies.  Particularly ones that have a crusty outer and a fudgy inner.  I had not sampled a good one for ages until I tried the ones at Arcaffe, a cafe franchise in Israel.  Not only do they sell wonderful brownies, but also a fantastic farmhouse sourdough loaf that Stacey makes a special trip every few days to stock up on.  So, I was able to have my treat quite often while on holiday.  Determined to find a recipe that was similar, I hunted and finally found success.

Dear Nigella.  The domestic goddess herself came up with the goods.  Which, I am sure is no surprise.  Her recipe used the white flour, white caster sugar model, which does give a crustier exterior, but I decided to try and make it with wholefood ingredients, rather than processed.  My niece, Yasmin and I experimented several times with this recipe, some attempts more successful than others.

Cane Sugar Only Version

We ended up replacing the white flour with whole wheat and the white caster sugar for a mixture of dark brown, raw cane and muscovado sugar.  I will admit it wasn’t as crusty (the white sugar effect) as the original (see photo above), but still fudgy with a rich, chocolatey taste.  Probably more cake-like than a brownie.

wholewheat dark chocolate brownies

I halved Nigella’s original recipe.  The recipe below makes 24 brownies.  If you like a crusty top, use all cane sugar or muscovado.  Adding dark brown sugar gives the brownie a more cake-like texture and a richer flavour.  Experiment with different ratios to find your preferred texture and flavour.


185g unsalted butter softened

185g best quality dark chocolate (minimum 70%)

3 large eggs

2 tsp vanilla extract

250g sugar (I like a mixture of dark and muscovado)

110g wholewheat plain flour

½ tsp salt

150g chopped walnuts

tin/dish approx. 33 x 23 x 5 ½ cm


1.  Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.  Line the sides and base of the tin with baking/parchment paper.

2.  Melt butter and chocolate in a large, heavy-based pan over medium-low heat.

3.  In a separate bowl, using an electric beater, mix eggs, sugar and vanilla.

4.  Measure flour into another bowl and whisk in salt.

5.  When chocolate mixture has melted, let cool slightly before beating in egg and sugar mixture by hand.

6.  Add flour and nuts, beat by hand, to combine all ingredients smoothly.

7.  Scrape the mixture out of the saucepan into the lined tin.

8.  Bake about 25 minutes.  When ready, top should be dried to a paler brown speckle with cracks beginning to appear, but the middle will still be dark, dense and gooey.  Keep an eye on them as, in Nigella’s words, the difference between gungy brownies and dry brownies is only a few minutes, remembering that they will continue to cook as they cool.

Goodness shared by Donna

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