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My Best Recipe

Baking a Better Brownie

April 28, 1988

"I grew up with these brownies and after having tasted these, any other brownie is awful," Danielle Gomez writes. "My grandmother made up this recipe. Whenever my mother made them for just our family, she did not frost them. They are delicious even without frosting. We always knew when company was coming because that was when we'd see them frosted."

GRANDMOTHER'S BEST BROWNIES

1 1/3 cups shortening

8 (1-ounce) squares unsweetened baking chocolate

4 cups sugar

8 eggs

2 cups chopped walnuts, optional

4 teaspoons vanilla

2 cups flour, sifted

1 teaspoon salt

Frosting, optional

Melt shortening and chocolate in saucepan (use saucepan large enough to serve as mixing bowl) on very low heat. Stir constantly to avoid burning. Remove from heat.

Add sugar and mix well. Add eggs, nuts and vanilla. Beat thoroughly until well blended. Stir in flour and salt. Pour into 2 greased (9-inch) square pans. Bake at 325 degrees 35 minutes. Remove from oven and spread with Frosting. Makes about 24 servings.

Frosting

3 tablespoons butter or margarine

3 (1-ounce) squares unsweetened baking chocolate

3 cups powdered sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/3 cup milk

1 teaspoon vanilla

Melt butter and chocolate in small saucepan over very low heat (or use double boiler). Stir constantly to avoid burning. Add powdered sugar, salt, milk and vanilla. Beat until well blended. Chill 10 to 15 minutes, until of spreading consistency.

--DANIELLE GOMEZ

San Diego

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