Sweet potato brownies!

I found this recipe on eatdrinkpaleo and have to admit my first attempt wasn’t too successful and resembled more a dry victoria sponge consistency than brownie consistency! But on my third attempt, I’m happy enough to post the recipe and quantities/method I used – which actually beat real brownies in a blind tasting!! That’s not to say they taste exactly like real brownies – they don’t, and in fact they’re more like dark chocolate brownies. But they’re pretty tasty!

Ingredients for about 10 brownies
290g grated sweet potato (I didn’t find white sweet potato any better than the usual orange)
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla essence
60 ml agave nectar
60 ml coconut oil
generous 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda
110g unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tbsp coconut flour
Optional: small handful of chopped pecans and cranberries/cherries

Preparation:

A couple of things to get out of the way as soon as you’re good to go:

  1.  Preheat the oven to Gas 4 / 185C.
  2. Because the coconut oil needs to be liquid, once I’ve measured it out into a cup or bowl I rest it in a larger bowl filled with just boiled water, which melts the coconut oil. However, do this as one of the first things when you start so the coconut oil isn’t ‘hot’ (or too warm) when you add it to the other ingredients (i.e. you don’t want it to affect the raw egg!)
  3. Grease your baking tray with coconut oil. I used a 500g/9lb baking tin – essentially you want the mixture to be about an inch deep when you’ve added it.

Method:

  1. Peel and grate the sweet potato (using larger grater holes) into a mixing bowl, then add in egg, vanilla essence, agave nectar and coconut oil. Mix together until all incorporated
  2. Add in the baking powder and baking soda and stir. Add in the nuts and dried fruits as well if using.
  3. Then add in the cocoa powder, which you’ll find will dry out the mix quite a lot. Add in about 3/4 of the coconut – it’s best to go light with this as it will further dry out your mixture. At this point on my third attempt, I added a little more agave nectar to moisten the mixture a bit.
  4. Transfer the mix into your baking tray and cook for about 30 mins. The exact amount will depend on your oven – I usually test it after 20 mins to see how it’s going. If a knife comes out clean that’s good – it’s also good if it feels a bit spongy. You’ll be leaving it in the tin for about 10 – 15 mins anyway so don’t forget residual heat once you’ve taken it out of the oven will help finish it cook.
  5. You can make a chocolate glaze to go over the top if you like it a bit sweeter. I did this using fondant sugar and cocoa powder (4:1 ratio of sugar to cocoa) and then adding as much water as I needed for the right consistency (~2 tbsps for 50g powder). Allow the brownies to cool and tip out of the baking tray before adding. The glaze should be the right consistency to nearly spread but not too runny that it seeps in and drops over the sides of the brownies.

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