Yummy ingredients from the popular drink–chocolate, espresso, and whipping cream–make a splash in these decadent bars filled with chopped pecans and garnished wtih chocolate-covered espresso beans.
- 6 (1-oz.) unsweetened chocolate baking squares
- 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoon unsalted butter, divided
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 4 teaspoons espresso powder, divided (we tested with Café Bustello)
- 2 tablespoons plus 2 tsp. coffee liqueur, divided
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup chopped pecans, toasted
- 2 tablespoons whipping cream or half-and-half
- 2 tablespoons vodka
- 2 1/4 to 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
- Garnish: chocolate-covered espresso coffee beans, chopped
- Melt 4 chocolate baking squares and 1/2 cup butter in a heavy saucepan over low heat, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat, and transfer to a large bowl. Add sugars; stir well. Stir in eggs, 2 teaspoon espresso powder, and 2 teaspoon coffee liqueur. Add flour and salt, stirring until blended. Stir in pecans.
- Spread batter into a lightly greased aluminum foil-lined 13″ x 9″ pan (or see note). Bake at 325° for 20 to 25 minutes or until brownies appear set on top. Cool completely in pan on a wire rack.
- Melt remaining 2 chocolate baking squares and 2 Tbsp. butter in heavy saucepan, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat; transfer to a medium bowl. Stir in remaining 2 tsp. espresso powder, whipping cream, vodka, and remaining 2 Tbsp. coffee liqueur. Add enough powdered sugar to make a good spreading consistency, beating at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth. Spread frosting over cooled brownies; garnish, if desired. Let stand until frosting is set. Use foil to lift uncut brownies out of the pan. Cut into bars to serve.
Note: For really thick, showy brownies, we baked these in an 11″ x 7″ pan at 325° for 26 to 28 minutes.
If you prefer not to add any alcohol to this dessert, you can use sweetened coffee Instead of the coffee liqueur and omit the vokda.