Trendy brownie flavors
Brownies offer bakers the chance to create tasty combinations of ingredients to delight consumers – young and old – in new and different ways.
Vincent Barcelona, Director of Sales, National and Culinary Accounts, offers the following examples of creative flavors and toppings, which bakers can make in their own stores.
- Ice Cream Sundae Brownie – chocolate chip brownie topped with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, hot fudge, rainbow sprinkles and a cherry on top
- S’mores – Brownies topped with marshmallow frosting, melted Hershey chocolate bars and graham cracker crumbs.
- Strawberry Shortcake Brownie – topped with fresh cream whipped cream and macerated strawberries!
- Maple Bacon Brownie – topped with maple glaze and crumbled bacon. Bacon and Maple go together so well it’s a crime
- Cookies’ n Cream Brownie – Frozen chocolate brownie topped with cream cheese whipped cream and crushed Oreos.
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From a food science perspective, Roger Daniels, vice president of research, development, innovation and quality at Stratas Foods, explains that in a bakery operation designed to match artisanal or baked brownies house, the role of oil or food grease is to lubricate and allow the incorporation of air.
Typical brownies use unsalted butter or liquid edible oils.
Stratas’ shortenings, margarines and oils are generally excellent substitutes for butter and edible oils.
For brownie recipes that require unsalted butter, he explains, margarine is a less important option due to the use of ingredients typical of the brownie recipe, which impart the intense flavor of chocolate (e.g. cocoa powder).
Specifically, margarine imparts buttery / dairy notes and these two attributes become masked due to the flavor character of chocolate. As such, Stratas recommends Primex All Purpose Shortening because of its neutral flavor and excellent mouth feel.
In brownie recipes that use edible oils, Stratas vegetable oil or canola products work well.
Brownies are usually made with a creaming method.
In this approach, Daniels explains, the dry ingredients (eg powdered sugar and cocoa powder) are combined and mixed until they are well dispersed.
While the dry ingredients step is in progress, the liquid components (eg eggs, water and liquid) are mixed together.
When mixed, the liquid and dry ingredients are mixed to create a cream together. This step involves lubricating and trapping the air to achieve a post-baked brownie that offers a chewy but airy texture.