People think St. Patrick’s Day is really just an excuse to get mind numbingly inebriated on artificially colored beer and cheap Irish whiskey. I say, God bless St. Patrick and his celebration of intoxication and cabbage induced indigestion. I also happen to look stunning in green as it compliments my emerald eyes that are flecked with gold. But all narcissism and kidding aside, some of my very favorite people are Irish including my late grandfather. Stuart J. McFetridge taught me a lot of things including financial responsibility, good work ethic, and the importance of a solid education. He also taught me one very important lesson that I carry with me to this day: The first beer doesn’t get cracked until noon. Seriously, beer drinking comes with a distinct set of rules and timing is a crucial element of responsible consumption. Only a wreckless, uncouth, immoral addict would even consider opening an alcoholic beverage in the morning hours. However, this does not apply to one who begins drinking at 12:01 PM and continues into well into the following day. After all, a new day doesn’t begin until one has slept for a reasonable eight hours. On a side note, I need to apologize to my grandfather for drinking that 11 year old dusty can of Guiness I stole from the garage when I was 20. That was a terrible idea and surely broke a host of beer drinking guidelines. To honor my favorite Irishman, I decided to make a batch of Irish Stout brownies. The rich, chocolate intensity of these brownies gets magnified by a bold burst double chocolate stout poured right into the batter before baking. This recipe is traditionally made with Guiness Stout but I decided to use Young’s Double Chocolate Stout because, well, it had the words double chocolate on the label.
1 cup all purpose flour
3/4 c. unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 tsp. salt
6 tbs. unsalted butter, room temperature
8 ounces bitterweet chocolate, chopped
3/4 cup chocolate chips
4 large eggs, room temperature
1 cup superfine sugar
1 1/4 cups stout (Guiness or Youngs). Should be room temp. Do not include foam in measurement.
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chunks
1/8 cup powdered sugar.
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line 9 x 13 inch baking pan with foil.
2. In medium bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa powder, and salt until evenly combined. Set aside.
3. Melt butter, bittersweet chocolate, and chocolate chips in microwave (use 30 second increments and stir to combine).
4. In large mixing bowl, beat eggs and sugar at high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add melted chocolate mixture, beating until combined.
5. Beat reserved flour mixture into melted chocolate mixture. Whisk in stout beer. The batter will seem thin.
6. Pour into prepared pan and sprinkle with chocolate chunks.
7. Bake 30-40 minutes until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
8. Let brownies cool to room temperature. Dust with powdered sugar before serving.
* Note: My grandfather could often be found with an ice cold brew in his hand but he was much more to me than a beer drinker. He was a fountain of love, faith, and wisdom. He taught me that I was much stronger than I ever gave myself credit for and was capable of achieving anything I set my mind to. Through his love, support, and guidance, he shaped the person I am today. Thank you for making me smile for 22 years. Also, I don’t really owe you a rib as Adam was the dunce who ate the apple. Eve was merely trying to provide sustenance for her family, as any good woman would do. Look forward to finishing this argument with face to face again one day. I love and miss you very much today and every day! Happy St. Patrick’s Day!