“Is that a PEA?”
Quite possibly the funniest comment ever to be made on Instagram when I shared the image of these brownies with my friends. No, it’s not a pea (though I’m sure with the rise of hidden veggies in chocolate treats, that a Pea Brownie won’t be far away!), it’s a gorgeous green pistachio!
My son and I devour a pre-made trail mix we buy in bulk, possibly on his part due to the dark chocolate chips in there, that has tons of gorgeous nuts, seeds and berries. Why not add them to a brownie I say?
If you’ve no trail mix on hand, but have a stash of nuts, seeds etc, then just make up a mix of 2 cups (per tray) to add to your brownies. My mix contained sunflower seeds, pepitas, pistachios, dried cranberries and much more, so the end result was just the right texture and flavour combination.
The same son who loves the trail mix, but hates brownies (I know, right?) absolutely LOVED these and demands they are made everytime we stock up on the mix. So, I may have shot myself in the foot a little there, but as a special treat, these get whipped up at least once a fortnight.
Don’t let the big batch quantities scare you! This makes 4 trays of brownies, which, when sliced, can serve up to 8 families (if half trays are given) or 4 families, which is a more usual MamaBake group size. Of course, just divide the mix by 4 to make a single tray.
(makes 4 trays of brownies)
480g dark chocolate
520g brown sugar
4 teaspoons vanilla extract
600g almond meal
8 cups trail mix or personalised combination of seeds, nuts, choc chips etc
Grease and line 4 x brownie trays (mine was about 18cm x 27cm.)
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C.
Next up is to melt the butter and chocolate. When working in big batch quantities, you need to get creative! Best tip would be to quarter fill a pasta sized pot with water, bring to a simmer, and pop the chocolate and butter in a big stainless mixing bowl on top (your other ingredients will go in here too, so keep that in mind when selecting a bowl!) Stir to melt until the chocolate and butter are combined.
Remove from the heat and allow to cool a little.
Add the sugar, vanilla and the eggs, stirring well with each addition of egg.
Next up, add the almond meal and the trail mix. Give it a big stir to combine.
Pour the mix evenly between the 4 trays and bake, one or two at a time (or all of them if you have a fabulous catering size oven!) for between 30 and 45 minutes. The top will go lovely and dry and crackly. Pop a skewer in the middle and it should come out clean (ish).
Allow to cool, then wrap/pop in a container and set in the fridge overnight. If you’re slicing it up straight away, make sure it’s completely cooled so it can set into the lovely dense texture that makes brownies so amazing!
*Recipe adapted from here*