Mini Vegan German Chocolate Brownies
Baking brownies is one of my favorite things to do on my day off. Procrastibaking...putting off the other things I should be doing, and baking instead. But that is what I should be doing on my day off, enjoying myself, right?! And I do enjoy baking brownies. How can anyone not be in a good mood while baking brownies? I certainly makes me happy. Licking the excess batter from the bowl, the heavenly aroma, and then digging into the warm gooey brownies because I could not wait any longer for them to cool. I love it.
So anyways, I baked brownies on my day off Monday, because I felt like it. I thought German chocolate cake sounded good too, so I made German chocolate brownies with all of the same wonderful flavors and textures. To my brownie batter, I added crunchy walnuts and coconut for some textural contrast to the soft fudgy brownie. It was sooo good as it was, but it needed the caramel frosting to make it German chocolate.
I made a gooey date caramel, and mixed in coconut and walnuts as I do for my German chocolate cake frosting, and it was perfect! Like German chocolate cake and brownies had a hybrid baby. So decadent and delicious. I used my little brownie pan for these, so because they are small I can have more. At least that is my mentality, and I am sticking to it!
Mini Vegan German Chocolate Brownies
1/2 cup virgin coconut oil, warmed to liquid
1/4 cup organic walnut butter*
1 cup coconut sugar
1/4 cup plus 2 Tbsp reduced aquafaba or 2 flax eggs*
2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup gluten free all-purpose flour
1/2 cup cacao powder or unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 cup roasted organic toasted walnuts
1/2 cup finely shredded, dried unsweetened coconut
1 cup soft medjool dates, pitted, and soaked in filtered water for 30 minutes if not soft
2 Tbsp organic walnut butter or pecan butter
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/8 tsp sea salt
1/3 cup filtered water or as needed
3/4 cup finely shredded, dried unsweetened coconut
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
To make the brownies, pre-heat the oven to 350F degrees. Whisk together the sugar, oil and walnut butter until well combined. Add the aquafaba and vanilla and beat until smooth. Add the flour, cacao powder and sea salt and beat until smooth, then stir in the coconut and walnuts. Scrape the batter into a greased mini brownie pan (or alternatively an 8x8 inch pan). Place in the oven, and Bake for about 15 minutes (or 30 minutes if in the 8x8 inch pan) or until set (but do not over bake or they will be too dry). Let cool before unmolding (or cutting into bars if in the 8x8 inch pan).
To make the caramel, combine all ingredients but the coconut and walnuts in a high speed blender, and blend until smooth (adding a little more filtered water if it is too thick). Stir in the coconut and walnuts and spread over each brownie (or all of them if you made them in the 8x8 inch, and cut them into squares). Enjoy!
*To make the walnut butter, place about 4 cups raw walnuts in a high speed blender, and blend until smooth, using the tamper to press the nuts down into the blades (this should take about 3 minutes). You may also use a food processor, but it takes a lot longer to make the butter, and you have to stop and scrape it down. Also note that if your blender is not high speed it is probably not capable of making butter. Store in a jar in the refrigerator for up to a few months.
*The aquafaba is the liquid from cooked or canned chickpeas. You want it to be thick like egg whites. If you are wanting to make flax eggs, simply mix together 2 Tbsp ground flax seeds, and 6 Tbsp filtered water and let sit in the refrigerator for 15 minutes before using in the recipe.