Monday, July 4, 2011

Star Shaped Brownies with Coconut Milk Ganache

Happy 4th of July! What are your plans today? I'm spending time with my family and having a bbq.

If you're still looking for a dessert recipe, look no further! These cute brownie stars are easy to make and festive for the holiday. I came up with this when I was at a lost of what to make that was dairy free. I decided to go back to a tried and true recipe and snazz them up.

brownie stars

I coated the white and blue brownies with candy melts (added food coloring to make blue since I didn't have blue melts). I had red candy melts as well, but since the candy melts aren't dairy free, I made a coconut milk ganache and topped it with red sugar. I think they turned out pretty nice if I don't say so myself!

I didn't use up all the ganache, so I see truffles in the future!

Star Shaped Brownies with Coconut Milk Ganache
adapted from an existing recipe

3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
2/3 cup canola oil, divided
1/2 cup boiling water
2 cups white sugar
2 eggs
1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 TBSP espresso powder
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (or carob chips)

recipe coconut ganache (below)

Preheat oven to 350° F (175° C). Line an 11x17 rimmed cookie sheet with foil. Spray with baking spray.

In a large bowl, stir together the cocoa and baking soda. Add 1/3 cup vegetable oil and boiling water. Mix until well blended and thickened. Stir in the remaining 1/3 cup oil, sugar, then eggs one at a time. Add the flour, vanilla and salt; mix just until all of the flour is absorbed. Add in the espresso powder. Mix until combined. Stir in chocolate chips. Spread evenly into the prepared pan.

Bake in the preheated oven for 20 to 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean. Let cool in pan.

Lift brownie out of pan using the foil. Cut into star shapes using a cookie cutter. You may need a knife in case the cookie cutter doesn't go all the way through.

Melt candy melts per the package directions. Spread the coating on top of the brownie. Let harden in the fridge and store at room temp after hardening. I did this because my home is warm and it didn't set right at room temperature.

for the ganache:
1 cup coconut milk
1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
1 tsp vanilla extract

Bring 1 cup of coconut milk to a boil. Remove from heat once boiling.

Place chocolate chips in a medium heat proof bowl. Pour boiling milk over chocolate chips. Let sit for one minute, then whisk until smooth. Stir in vanilla.

Cover with saran wrap, making sure it touches the surface so a skin doesn't form. Allow to cool at room temperature.

Dip one side of the brownie into the ganache and add red sugar. Cool in fridge until set. Store at room temperature.

Makes about 16 brownies (depending on your cookie cutter size) with leftover scraps of brownies.

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