It’s pumpkin season, and, if you’re anything like me, you’re tired of hearing the phrase “pumpkin spice [fill in the blank].” Don’t get me wrong, I’m a big fan of pumpkin, but I have no desire to bite into a dessert that tastes like a scented candle.
That’s what intrigued me I came across Jackie Dodd’s recipe for pumpkin beer brownies. Dodd’s the author of The Craft Beer Cookbook. She takes a basic brownie recipe, adds pumpkin purée and a boozy kick of rich, pumpkin porter. The result: a fudgy, indulgent, pumpkin-packed dessert that makes for one hell of a cheat day treat.
Any pumpkin beer will do the trick, but Dodd uses He Said Baltic Style Porter from 21st Amendment Brewery for the beer’s intoxicating flavors of Vietnamese cinnamon, pumpkin, and roasted barley.
You don’t have to serve the brownies with ice cream and chocolate sauce.
But you kind of have to.
Pumpkin Porter Brownies Sundaes
Recipe by Jackie Dodd, founder of The Beeroness
What you’ll need:
For the brownies:
1 ½ cups unsalted butter, cut into quarter inch cubes, plus more for greasing
10 oz. chocolate, 60% cacao (about 2 cups)
1 cup pumpkin porter (preferably He Said Baltic Style Porter)
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 large whole eggs
1 ½ cups white sugar
1 cup light brown sugar
1 cup pumpkin puree
1 cup bread flour
½ tsp ground cinnamon
2 tsp espresso powder or finely ground espresso beans
1 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
For the sundae:
10 oz chocolate, 60% cocoa (about 2 cups)
2 Tbsp light corn syrup
1/3 cup pumpkin porter
1 quart vanilla ice cream
How to make it:
1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. In the top of a double boiler, or metal bowl set over (but not touching) gently simmering water, add the butter and the chocolate. Stir occasionally until just melted. Remove from heat, stir in 1 cup pumpkin porter and vanilla extract.
2. In the bowl of a stand mixer or a large metal bowl beat the eggs until light and frothy, about 2 minutes. Add both kinds of sugar and beat until light and fluffily, about 6 minutes. Add the pumpkin purée, and stir until combined.
3. In a separate bowl add the flour, cinnamon, espresso powder, salt, and cocoa powder. Whisk until well combined.
4. While the mixer is on low (or you’re stirring slowly), add the chocolate mixture to the eggs. Mix until well incorporated, stopping to scrape the bottom of the bowl to ensure the batter is fully combined.
5. Remove the bowl from the stand mixer, and sprinkle with the dry ingredients. Stir until just combined.
6. Butter a 9×13 baking dish and pour in batter.
7. Place in the oven and immediately reduce to 350. Bake at 350 for 35 minutes. The top should look completely dry but the center should still be fudgy. To check, insert a toothpick in the center of the brownies. If the toothpick slides out easily, but some crumbs cling to the toothpick, you’re good. Remove the brownies from the oven and cool to room temperature.
8. Before serving, add the remaining dark chocolate, corn syrup, and 1/3 cup pumpkin porter to the top of a double boiler over medium heat. Stir until melted and well combined, remove from heat, pour over ice cream. Makes 8 to 10 servings.
—Photo credit: Mark Alpert