Tuesday, November 15, 2011

black bean brownies with peanut butter chocolate chip "cookie dough"

I definitely don't make it a habit to trick Idle Husband into eating things he doesn't like (or says he doesn't like -- because there is a difference). Sometimes, I like to sneak that good stuff in. Spinach in chicken meatloaf, sweet potato "french fries", tomatoes and parsley in hamburgers, carrots in beef meatloaf. But I never lie about it. He knows it's there. He can see most of it. It's the fact that he can't taste it that's important.

And that's why this is my best food caper yet!

I never once mentioned that these brownies were made up almost entirely of black beans. Beans are one of his most hated food items.

We happily ate them for dessert for two weeks. And I happily discovered he was sneaking squares out at night, while I was asleep.

I didn't even have to disguise them with anything. I didn't put globs of icing on them. No whipped cream. No crumbled bacon. He himself didn't even add a blob of honey on top of each bite. They're just deliciously fudgey -- no. cakey! -- no. melt-in-your-mouth-y! They're just different in a really good way.

So except for the batch where I added a banana, I still haven't mentioned what makes up these brownies.

It was on the second batch where I thought I'd throw caution to the wind and test out a chocolate chip cookie dough dip that I'd had in my sights for a while. I thought it might work as a cute little topping. But like the black beans, chickpeas (another hated ingredient) were now going to substitute flour and butter.

The chocolate chip cookie dough experiment didn't go over as well with Idle Husband, but it went over well with me. I ate most of it with a spoon, straight out of the fridge.

Right now, I'm wishing I had another can of chickpeas just so I could have more in the fridge. It's so good. So. Good. It will frighten you how good it tastes. And how much like cookie chickpea becomes.

I think the only thing that kept Idle Husband from enjoying it was the name.

"But why eat cookie dough? Why not just bake it and eat cookies?"
"It's supposed to be like this. It's a cookie dough dip. It doesn't have eggs in it."

He couldn't get past it so that was the end of that conversation. I didn't want to tell him it was made from chickpeas and that I made it to go with the black bean brownies (and they go very well together) since I was still smug from successfully disguising beans and I wanted to sneak peas in, too.

It would have ruined it, you know? This surprise.

Oh yeah. Surprise!

{banana black bean brownies}
adapted from Amy Bites

1 (19 oz) can black beans, drained and thoroughly rinsed
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1 pinch salt
2 eggs
1 ripe banana
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp instant coffee (optional)
nuts and chocolate chips as desired

Puree all of the ingredients (except nuts and chocolate chips) in a food processor, blender, or with an immersion blender (I used my immersion blender). Blend thoroughly until well combined and smooth (gotta get the bean chunks).

Pour batter into a well greased baking dish. I used two different sizes. One 5x6" and the other 11x7". The smaller the dish, the more cakey the outcome. We preferred the larger dish.

Top with nuts and chocolate chips if desired (or mix them in).

Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until the top is dry and slightly cracked and the edges have pulled away from the sides of the dish. Toothpick test. Let cool; slice and enjoy. (Lasts exceptionally well covered at room temperature.)

{note} Please please also visit Amy Bites for the original version of this recipe which is just as good as the banana version. Idle Husband preferred the banana; I liked the original.

{peanut butter chocolate chip cookie dough}

1 1/2 cups chickpeas, drained and rinsed (almost a full 19 oz can -- I should have just used the whole damn thing)
1/8 tsp salt
1/8 tsp baking soda
2 tsp vanilla extract
3 tblsp smooth peanut butter (I used Kraft Light)
2 tblsp (more or less) milk (I used almond)
2 1/2 tsp Splenda
chocolate chips

Puree the first 5 ingredients together in a food processor or with an immersion blender. Blend thoroughly until well combined and all of the chickpeas have been pureed (it would shatter the mystique if you found a little chickpea chunk in there). Add the milk a tablespoon at a time until you reach your desired consistency (mine was a little more like dough than dip; add more milk if you want to dip into it). Add the sugar one teaspoon at a time until you reach your desired sweetness.

Mix in however many chocolate chips you desire (chopped chocolate would be nice, too). Enjoy! (Store in the fridge in a covered container.)

{note} Please please also visit Chocolate Covered Katie for more ideas on variations of the dip and sweeteners to use (she's also got a whole lot more sugar-free and gluten-free desserts. I really love her for that).


Rachel (teacher-chef) said...

You husband sounds like my father who likes his flavors "traditional". I on the other hand LOVE this idea (and have made chick-pea cookie dough and agree with you as to how delicious it is). I wish I had some of both of these in my kitchen right now... think I might need to get on that! THANKS for sharing :-)

JJ said...

Ohhhhh!!!!! No wonder the brownies I tried to make with black beans never tasted good! I always just drained but never rinsed the black beans ;p

Ding! Round 2 ;D

Jen @ Savory Simple said...

These look wonderful! Your photos are stunning and your ingredients are so creative! Thank you for sharing.

MyFudo™ said...

I can't believe you use black beans for brownies! Very creative! I think it added a blacker tinge that makes it more palatable...Thanks for sharing. Will try your recipe!

GALaxy said...

JJ: Yes, I think rinsing the beans is very important. They tend to have that mysterious black sludge all over them. I can imagine it wouldn't taste very good!

CC said...

Great recipe, but mine didn't taste beany until it was baked. Then again I didn't use any sugar or chocolate chips. Will keep trying, the peanut butter chick pea part is amazing. Thanks.

GALaxy said...

CC: mmm yeah... I don't think these would taste very pleasant without the sugar (the cocoa powder would add a lot of bitterness, too). You could try using an alternative like stevia or splenda if you're trying to keep things sugar free.

Mandy said...

I make hummus and I learned a trick to shell the garbanzo beans and it makes the hummus creamier. Didn't know if you would want to try it for the cookie dough. Can't wait to make it!