I made these for valentine's day for my husband. We really enjoyed them and I will send some to work with him to get some non-vegan thoughts. I made the following modifications:
- I substituted a 3oz bar of dark chocolate with espresso beans for the semi-sweet chocolate because we didn't have semi-sweet chocolate in the house
- instead of the walnuts, I added 1/3 cup raw cashews and 1/3 cup cocoa nibs
- I forgot to add the espresso powder
- I completely forgot to put the pan on the lower rack and instead baked it for 15 min on the upper rack until I realized my mistake. I only ended up baking for 30 min total.
I think they turned out really well. The outer edge is chewy, just how I would imagine a regular brownie to be, and the rest of the brownie is really moist. I did not have any problems with these turning out too dry, despite failing to follow some of the instructions.
The 1/4 cup hot water did not melt all the chocolate, possibly because I did not chop it up small enough, but that's ok because there are tiny pieces of heavenly chocolate throughout the brownies. Overall, I find these to be quite sweet and in the future I would try to make some modifications for the amount of sugar. I do not think that warrants giving this recipe a lower rating, though, as that is personal preference. I do not eat a lot of sugar on a daily basis and have cut out foods with added sugar, so I feel like I am a bit more sensitive to sweet foods. I will probably try some changes to the amount of sugar in the future, but I wanted to make sure I didn't make too many modifications on the first go round with this recipe.
This will likely be my go-to vegan brownie recipe, as I feel pretty comfortable about making some changes without affecting the quality too much.