Poppy Seed and Nut Brownies

Hello there! How has your week been? 

Poppy seed and nut brownies

My week has been crazy – busy, stressful, difficult, challenging, but also exciting, fun and rewarding. Last week, my second year of my degree started. So I am in week two now, and already have an assessment due tomorrow!! They give me no time to get into studying again, haha, just straight away – full on! Which is good as well, since I am terrible at ‘doing nothing’. It makes me quite restless, so having lots to do is better for me. Except for the stressing factor, that I already have experienced a lot lately. Maybe not the best week to do another bake you may say? Well, I have to do something to clear mind as well, right?

So this week, I have decided to make brownies. I am sure I don’t have to give any reason to make brownies – I mean I have never met someone who did not enjoy them. But I do have a couple of reasons 🙂 (to make the brownies even better haha). Firstly, chocolate contains several good chemicals that make you happy (tryptophan and phenylethylalanine) and a stimulant (theobromine) to help you relax and wake up. So if you’re stressful and battered out, chocolate is your best friend :).IMG_1511 Another reason for the brownies this week, is that I think they are a good food to celebrate! And I have some things to celebrate! I finished my first assessment without last minute work (which feels a bit nerve wrecking and a bit good haha). But my other reason to celebrate is more exciting, and needs a bit of explanation. At my university, there is a student association. They do many different things, but one of them is that they make a cookbook each year, for the students, full of students’s own recipe. A lot of volunteers work together to make this cookbook. And this semester they were (amongst other positions) looking for a volunteer Graphic Designer. So I applied, since this would be an awesome opportunity to learn a lot and improve my skills! My interview was last week, and this Monday I got to know that I am the Graphic Designer for this year’s cookbook :)! So more work for me haha, but I am excited to dive into this project. I have lots more to learn, so bring it on! I’ll keep you posted on how the cookbook is going 🙂

Enough talking, more baking, more brownies.

For the brownies, I choose Delia Smith’s Four Nut Chocolate Brownie recipe. Her brownies are absolutely divine already (so you can also decide to stop reading here and just go for herrecipe haha). I adapted the recipe a bit – I used only three kinds of nuts and added poppy seeds. I love poppy seeds, but always seem to forget about them. So I figured, let’s try if they go well with chocolate! And of course, I added a bit of cinnamon, how could I resist that? They came out sweet, gooey, chocolatey, nutty – just yummy.

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I have to give you Delia’s advice before starting the brownies: ” You need to get into the brownie mood, and to do this stop thinking ‘cake’. Brownies are slightly crisp on the outside but soft, damp and squiggly within. ” So now you know this, bring on your brownie mood and enjoy!

Poppy Seed and Nut Brownies

Makes a lot of brownie – easily divided into 20 good squares.

  • 140 g nuts (can be any kind you like – I used walnuts, hazelnuts and almonds)
  • 80 g dark chocolate (preferably 75% cocoa solids or more)
  • 130 g butter
  • 3 eggs
  • 250 g brown sugar
  • 75 g flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup poppy seeds
  1. Preheat the oven to 180C. Line the tin you want to make your brownies in with baking paper (any shape will do, I had one cake loaf tin and one round one).
  2. Place the nuts on a baking sheet with baking paper. Roast them in the oven for 8 – 10 minutes. Keep an eye on them – you don’t want them to burn!! IMG_1487
  3. After the nuts are done, set them aside in a bowl to cool down.In the meanwhile, combine the chocolate and butter in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of barely simmering water. Make sure that the bowl does not touch the water. Allow the chocolate and butter to melt and then beat until smooth.IMG_1488
  4. Remove the chocolate mixture from the heat and into a large mixing bowl. Add the eggs and whisk until combined.
  5. Add flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon and stir with a wooden spoon until just combined.
  6. Chop up the nuts roughly (not too small) and fold them, together with the poppy seeds, into the brownie mixture. IMG_1495
  7. Spread the mixture evenly into the prepared tin. Bake the brownies for 20 – 25 minutes in the oven or until it is slightly springy in the centre.
  8. Leave the brownies in their tin for 10 minutes, before cutting them into squares and transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely (or before you pop these warm and gooey brownies in your mouth). I hope you like them!

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