Too much? Brownies with a buttercream frosting and all made with the addition of Pumpkin Spice Kahlua? I thought not too! Of course you could just sip this liqueur over rocks or even my favorite; with a bit of vodka and half and half. No longer just a White Russian, we would have to christen it The Spicy Russian!
These brownies have long been a favorite; they are not even close to cake-like brownies; as a matter of fact my friend Chris that shared her recipe with me 28 years ago called them Baked Fudge and that so fits. I’ve added espresso and Kahlua along the way and made them even more decadent with a buttercream frosting; the original recipe was actually included in this blog but dated in the last century (1997) and that was just wrong! Want something less seasonal? Just use regular Kahlua or even bourbon; I love both!
These are my perfect brownie; so incredibly rich and moist and with another concession I’ve made over the years that helps to take them over the top. Toasted Walnuts. I used to just tolerate walnuts and would often simply substitute my more favored nut, pecans. Then one day some recipe somewhere must have called for toasted walnuts and life as I knew it changed. I had never thought of them as ‘raw’ before if they were not toasted but that was it; that’s what I did NOT like. Now I toast both pecans and walnuts prior to including then in any recipe; that step changes them for the better in my book and I want better every chance I can and this is an easy one.
The Kahlua serves mostly to make that chocolate ever so much better; coffee and chocolate are super compatible friends. Still, I can tell a greater difference with the Pumpkin Spice Kahlua. Not a huge one but that spiciness comes though and it’s a great addition; just a teeny bit of heat which is so perfect with the chocolate. Watch out for that frosting too; it is definitely spoon-worthy!
For the Brownies
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 cup unsalted butter
- 2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1 tsp espresso powder (optional)
- 1 1/2 cups light brown sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1/2 cup Pumpkin Spice Kahlua (or regular Kahlua if unavailable)
- 1 cup toasted walnut pieces, divided
For the Brownie Glaze
- 2 Tbsp Pumpkin Spice Kahlua
For the Icing
- 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter
- 2 Tbsp Kahlua
- 1 Tbsp whipping cream
- 2 1/4 cups powdered sugar, sifted
- Preheat oven to 350° F. Line a 9x9-inch pan with parchment paper and spray with nonstick cooking spray.
To Prepare brownies:
- In a medium bowl, sift flour, baking powder and salt and set aside.
- Use a double boiler or a heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water (water from either should not actually touch inserted pan).
- Combine butter, chocolate chips and espresso powder in top unit and stir until melted and smooth. Remove from heat and let cool down.
- Beat sugar, eggs and 1/2 cup Kahlua in mixer. Pour in chocolate mixture and beat well. Mix in dry ingredients and beat until just combined.
- Add 3/4 cup toasted walnuts and stir into brownie dough.
- Pour batter into prepared pan.
- Bake for 40 to 45 minutes until toothpick inserted in center comes out almost clean (slightly gooey is fine; these are not cake brownies!). Top may be slightly cracked.
- Remove brownies from oven and immediately brush the top of the warm brownies with 2 Tbsp of Kahlua. Let brownies cool completely.
To Prepare Icing:
- Brown butter in saucepan. Remove from heat and add Kahlua & whipping cream. Whisk in powdered sugar until you have a smooth but still pourable consistency.
- Pour on top of cooled brownies and spread to edges to cover completely.
- Sprinkle with 1/4 cup of reserved toasted walnuts; light press nuts into frosting.Refrigerate until set (chilled brownies are easier to cut. Use a large, sharp knife that is warmed in a glass of hot water; wipe clean after each cut).
- Store brownies in a covered container; best if eaten within a couple of days.