Chewy Christmas brownies with marzipan. Not that I really needed an excuse to make them, but it turned out that today is National Brownie Day in the U.S. The perfect time for a Christmassy version. Besides double chocolate, my Christmas brownies contain marzipan paste, almonds and dried cherries.
To me Christmas tastes like marzipan, candied and citrus fruits, as well as chocolate and nuts. I guess those are mostly the flavors of traditional Central European Christmas sweets. This year I already bought gingerbread and stollen at the store. And of course I test American sweets every year, like so far candy cane chocolate covered almonds and candy cane dark chocolate and candy cane ice cream. See a pattern here? But for my Christmas brownies I stuck to my European flavors.
As always I had my human guinea pig Rich try the brownies first and he loved them. Before me he didn’t really eat marzipan because it is not as common in the U.S. as in Europe. Well, now he eats it all. (Except for raisins, which he absolutely dislikes – I might have to come up with a plan here … I mean he even learned to like kohlrabi after all)
I find marzipan (paste) rather expensive here so I made my own paste for the first time. See below – it is super easy and much cheaper than the paste you can buy in stores. Because I used normal almond flour, the paste is a little darker. But I don’t care so much as I mostly use marzipan paste in other dishes. If you want to have a light paste, use blanched almond flour.
All You Need to Make the Christmas Brownies
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How to Make Marzipan Paste
For 400 g (ca. 1.5 cups), you need:
- 200 g (or 2 cups) almond flour
- 200 g (or 1 2/3 cups) powdered sugar
- 1 tbsp. rose water
- ca. 5 tbsp. tap water
- Mix the almond flour and the powdered sugar well.
- Add the rose water and mix.
- Add one tbsp. of tap water and knead before adding the next. Knead until you have a firm paste.
- Store the paste in the fridge.
Tip: It is easiest when you use a hand mixer with kneading hooks.
Chewy Christmas Brownies with Dobule Chocolate and Marzipan
- 300 g or 1 3/4 cups + 2 tbsp. flour
- 250 g or 1 cup + 3 tbsp. sugar
- 30 g or 1/3 cup cocoa powder
- 1 tbsp. baking powder
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 4 eggs
- 300 ml or 1 1/4 cups vegetable oil
- 50 g or 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 150 g or 1 cup dark chocolate morsels
- 100 g or 1 cup almonds, slivered
- 75 g or 1/2 cup dried cherries
- 100 g or 1/3 cup + 2 tbsp. marzipan paste, cut in small pieces
- Preheat oven to 180 °C (or 360 °F).
- In a bowl mix the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt well.
- Add the eggs and stir well.
- Add the vegetable oil and the heavy cream. Mix well until you have a smooth batter.
- Stir in the dark chocolate morsels, almonds, cherries and the marzipan paste.
- Pour the batter into a baking dish of about 20 x 35 cm (or 8 x 14 in).
- Bake the brownies for ca. 30 to 35 minutes.
Feel free to decorate them afterwards. I used some Christmassy sprinkles to add a bit of color.
The Christmas brownies also go very well with ice cream.