If there’s a better combination than chocolate and raspberries then I don’t know it. These brownies are dense and truffle-like, with lots and lots of melt-in-your-mouth raspberry flavor from both jam and whole berries. And here’s the amazing thing…they’re low in fat, high in fiber and made with whole wheat pastry flour! But don’t let that deter you, you’d never know it.
I’ve been hard at work developing healthier dessert recipes for the upcoming Forks Over Knives cookbook! I said “healthier” not “healthy” because dessert, no matter how healthy, is an indulgence. But if we’re going to indulge (and we definitely are), why not try to make those treats as nutritious as possible? Developing these treats has been a fun challenge and I’m getting a kick out of experimenting with whole grain flours, natural sweeteners and alternative sources of fat. I also like that the recipes don’t have to be too restrictive; some fats are cool to use in moderation, like nut butters, avocado and chocolate.
But back to these brownies! Valentine’s Day is coming up and you’ll surely want to make these for the one you love. Maybe you’d like to scatter brownies on the bed instead of rose petals?
A few recipe notes:
~This is one of those rare occasions where frozen fruit actually works better than fresh, so don’t worry about raspberries being out of season. The batter is very thick and I’m pretty sure that fresh raspberries would get crushed as you tried to knead them in.
~Use a naturally sweetened fruit spread if you can find one.
~For the dry sweetener, I use Sucanat, but any sugar will do.
~To get brownies as fudgy as possible, be careful not to overbake. These really benefit from chilling in the fridge for a few hours.
~To slice brownies, use a blunt knife (a butter knife or a plastic knife) and dip in water after each slice.
4 oz unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup raspberry fruit spread
1/2 cup sugar or other dry sweetener (see note)
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1 1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup frozen raspberries
Preheat oven to 350 F. Line an 8 inch pan with parchment paper and lightly mist with non-stick cooking spray.
Melt the chocolate in either a double boiler or the microwave. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, vigorously mix together the jam, sweetener, and apple sauce. Stir in the extracts and the melted chocolate.
Sift in the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Mix very well until a stiff dough forms. Fold in the raspberries. Spread the mixture into the prepared pan. It will be very thick, you’ll probably need to use your hands to evenly spread the batter.
Bake for 16 to 18 minutes, they should still be soft and gooey. If a tester toothpick comes out clean, they’re overbaked. Remove from oven and let cool completely. These taste especially good and fudgy after being refrigerated for a few hours.