Brownies are a special little treat. With a different ratio of ingredients to that of a cake mix, the absolute key element of a brownie is the gooey centre. It's what makes a brownie a brownie!
With this recipe, you can also play around with whatever flavours you like, instead of pecans you can swap in chopped mixed nuts or almost any nut you are a fan of. In place of the chopped dates, you can swap in a similar fruit with a wildly different flavour - try it with dried sour cherries!
I wanted to do a recipe to celebrate the centenary by ‘modernising’ a sweet treat available at the time. But the reality was that the working middle classes had little money for treats, and there is not a lot to work with.
"Waste is never a good thing. In our house, nothing went to waste. What we didn't use ourselves went to the chickens. If you have some leftover brown sodabread and you dont want to waste it and you dont have any chickens ... ! - try this recipe for Brown Bread Ice Cream.
Speaking of chickens reminds me of a day many years ago pregnant with our first child. I had gone into labour and not wanting to make a fuss, waved Paul off to make silage while I potterered about. Pauls mother had just got some baby chickens and needed to put a heat lamp over them. I offered to help so crawled into a tiny space with the baby chicks to settle them in and hang the lamp. Reversing out while having contractions was not as easy a job as I had previously thought!
In case you wondered how that story finished - I 'pottered' for a while longer until I became desperate enough to drive up the road to locate my farmer husband who asked ...surprise..surprise... if I could 'hang on' for another hour as he was nearly finished. He was lucky to be left alive. Aisling arrived, beautiful and loud - a short while later. The best day ever.
Enjoy the ice cream.