My youngest son & me

My youngest son & me

About me

My name is Tanja (Sater) Miller and I'm excited about sharing my journey of converting my favorite recipes to gluten free! I am not a fancy cook - I prefer just a casual, fun meal. I am married with grown children (and have small grandchildren) & 3 dogs. I work full time as a registered nurse & I am a geek. Yes, I love Star Trek, Star Wars, Fringe, Firefly, Farscape and most of the other Scify shows. You will probably see a little of my geek side come out once in a while! Please join me on my journey of cooking, baking & converting every day recipes into yummy gluten free meals that everyone can enjoy (not just those with a gluten allergy!) Don't be shy about checking out my recipes....I have the gluten free version along with the regular recipe that I adapted from!

Saturday, March 19, 2016

Chipotle Fudge Brownies (Gluten Free)

Chipotle Fudge Brownies! These dense, moist brownies have a deep chocolate flavor and a slight little touch of heat. (It is really subtle and just delightful!) These brownies are one of our favorite dark chocolate desserts at our house and I like to serve them for dessert after a Mexican inspired meal or on a night we are having friends over on the patio by the fire pit table relaxing. I never would have considered chile + chocolate = delicious but it really does. The subtle flavor of the smoked chile power makes the dark chocolate flavor of the brownies more intense. You absolutely must try these!

You can find Chipotle chile powder at most grocery stores in the spice aisle or order it online. I really suggest you use the Chipotle and not Cayenne because the flavors are different. However, in a pinch...I guess you can use the Cayenne pepper but you will miss the smokey flavor that the Chipotle chile brings into this scrumptious dessert. You don't need a lot....a little bit of the Chipotle chile is enough. You don't want to over power the brownies and make your friends rushing for a drink to get the heat out of their mouth. You want it to enhance the depth of the dark chocolate and feel a slight shiver of heat tingling on your a gentle kiss. This dessert is great served with coffee or with red wine. (At least that is my story and I am sticking to it!) Don't let the idea of chile powder mixed into brownies turn you off. Most people assume they won't like them but are pleasantly surprised and this is one of my most requested recipes.

The brownies are great on their own with a light dusting of powdered sugar (or you can kick it up a slight notch and add a pinch of chipotle into the powdered sugar!) or I really like to dress them up with a dark chocolate glaze that is not too sweet. The brownies are also tasty if you want to leave out the Chipotle chile powder....they hold their own on any dessert table. I am sure this brownie recipe can be adjusted to add/delete items to get your customized flavor.

I designed this recipe by experimenting in the kitchen with different brownie recipes and wrote down all the ingredients I either added or deleted and adjusted oven temperatures until I got the consistency and texture I wanted. This is probably my absolutely favorite brownie recipe. Of course the geek that I am....I HAD to add some Star Wars white chocolate candies to the top. My friend Andrew suggested that I "draw" with icing the Death Star in the background. Obviously, he hasn't seen me draw....I guess we will have to wait until he visits to try that together since he is the artist!

Chipotle Fudge Brownie Recipe:

  • 1 bag (12 oz) dark chocolate chips (I use Guittard brand which is gluten free)
  • 3/4 cup of real butter (you can substitute Crisco vegetable shortening or Coconut Oil shortening but you won't get the exact same buttery flavor)
  • 3 large eggs (I prefer using brown eggs)
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar 
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar (this gives a chewy texture to the brownies and a richer flavor)
  • 2-3 teaspoons Chipotle Chile powder 
  • 1/2 teaspoon of Espresso powder or instant coffee granules (you will not taste the flavor of coffee at all in this recipe. It actually helps enhance the dark chocolate flavor. I learned this trick from a patient that was a pastry chef. I learn so much from our lovely patients!)
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 cup gluten free flour blend (If you don't have a gluten allergy then you can use regular flour). I used Pillsbury gluten free flour blend today. If your gluten free flour blend does not have either guar gum or xanthin gum then you will need to add 1 teaspoon of xanthin gum. If you are using regular flour you can omit this. 

Melt the dark chocolate chips and butter until smooth and melted. (You can do this in the microwave in 30 second intervals & stirring or you can do this on the stove top in a saucepan). Gradually add the sugars and stir until smooth. Beat in the eggs until well incorporated. Add the flour and baking soda; stir until just mixed and smooth. Don't over-mix. Pour into greased (or spray with cooking spray) 9" springform pan that has foil wrapped on the bottom to catch any grease dripping out of pan. (I personally prefer using a springform pan to bake this brownie but you can use a 9" round or square pan. Bake in a pre-heated 350 degree oven. (I have used both a regular oven and a convection oven and both bake about the same. I didn't find any cooking time difference. Altitude and each oven bakes different so I suggest you check at the earliest baking time and then adjust your recipe accordingly. I usually write a note on the side of my recipe). Bake for approximately 35-55 minutes or until toothpick inserted comes out clean or with moist crumbs. If you are getting runny batter in the middle then you need to continue baking. If your temperature is off and it looks like your edges are getting crispy and the center isn't done, put a piece of foil on the top of your pan and lower your oven temperature 25 degrees. My new oven bakes fabulously but my old oven required me to play around with recipes to get them to bake correctly....but I did it!
I melted the chocolate chips and butter in glass bowl in my microwave

Stir until fairly smooth

Getting ready to bake the brownies in pre-heated 350 degree oven
Let it cool for at least 20 minutes before removing from the pan. I like to put a clean dishcloth over the top of the pan so it stays moist as it cools. Foil can cause the brownies to sweat which isn't a good texture. Once the brownies are cool, you can sprinkle it with powdered sugar and serve it, frost it with a gluten free store bought frosting like Betty Crocker brand OR you can do what I do and add a sinful glaze over the top. Yes....dark chocolate glaze on top of a sassy brownie. Yep, that is the way I roll at our house!

Getting ready to pour glaze over the top of the cooled brownie

Side profile of the brownie before pouring the glaze on top

Dark Chocolate Glaze:

  • 1/2 cup water (I substitute milk unless I am baking for people with dairy allergy then I use either water or Coca Cola. will be surprised how I can improvise when I need to. I have used water, milk, goat milk, canned milk, non-dairy creamer, Coca Cola and coconut milk. It all worked fine. I have not tried Almond milk or Rice milk so I can't guarantee they will work but I can't imagine why they would work if water works). 
  • 1/2 cup real butter (I like the sinful flavor the real butter brings into the glaze but if you don't have it on hand or have a dairy allergy you can use Crisco vegetable shortening or Coconut oil shortening or a non-dairy butter substitute).
  • 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (I use a gluten free dark chocolate type. I prefer using the European style that my German family sends me when I have it on hand. Hershey Dark Chocolate Cocoa Powder works fine too). 
  • 3 1/2 cups of powdered sugar (make sure it is gluten free. Most brands are but you need to double check the ingredients if you have an allergy)
  • 1/2 teaspoon of Chipotle Chile powder, optional. (I like to add this little touch of sassiness to the glaze but you can certainly leave it out).

Heat the water (or milk), and butter (or shortening) in a saucepan on stove top until melted and smooth. (You can probably do this in the microwave also but I always do it on the stove top. Old habits are hard to break!) Stir in cocoa powder until smooth and then gradually add powdered sugar. If it appears too thick (should be a pourable consistency) then add a tablespoon of water or milk until you get the right consistency. If it appears too runny then add a few tablespoons of powdered sugar. Once you have the glaze nice and smooth you can add a pinch of chipotle chile powder if desired. Pour over slightly cooled brownies.
Melting the butter, water and cocoa powder on stove top

Just poured glaze on top. It looks messy because I wanted to cover the edges of the brownie. I transferred to new plate

Glazed brownie prior to decorating with my Geek chocolates

Ready to eat!

Up close view of my Geek Brownies

Side view of the brownies

Dessert Time!
I chose to melt some white chocolate candy coating (also called almond bark) in my silicone Star Wars molds and refrigerate until they were hardened. I drizzled the leftover white chocolate over the dark chocolate glaze for a little decoration. You do not need to do this and make extra work for yourself. I just like to geek stuff up and my friends and family always get a chuckle out of it. I feel like I need to justify all the silicone geek molds! Ha! Ha!

Up close side view of cut brownie

Top view of brownie (geek style!)

Ready to eat! 

My Star Wars silicone molds that I poured melted white chocolate for shapes

I hope you enjoyed my Chipotle Fudge Brownie Recipe and try making them at home soon. They are great for any casual event or you can fancy them up for a gourmet party! The taste of these will rock any get-together and impress everyone. They are easy to make and the flavor is unforgettable.

Have a geeky brownie weekend!
Gluten Free Casually

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