Everyone has recipes that represent their childhood. My crispy baked pork chops are a riff on the Shake ’N Bake Pork chops I loved growing up. There’s also a baked chicken recipe that I’ll share soon, but the quintessential “treat” when I was growing up was my mom’s brownies. Everyone loved them! They are chocolately and moist and more a fudgier brownie as opposed to the more conventional cake brownie. As a matter of fact, in a classic case of only wanting what you didn’t have, I used to PLEAD with her to buy brownie mix in a box. I wanted the cake style brownie. Eventually, I had my fill of cake brownies and I wised up. I know this recipe by heart. It’s THAT good and THAT easy.
My mom got the recipe from her sister-in-law’s mother-in-law, who was also a close friend of my paternal grandmother. Did you follow that? That woman was also named Ruth. So, here you have, Ruth’s Brownies.
- 4 squares unsweetened chocolate (I use Baker’s)
- 2 sticks of butter
- 2 cups of sugar
- 1 cup of flour
- 4 eggs lightly beaten
- 2 tsp vanilla extract (use the real stuff PLEASE)
- 1 pinch of salt
- 1 cup coarsely chopped walnuts (optional – I NEVER get to add walnuts because the people around me equate eating nuts to eating bugs. I think they add something, especially if you have a few minutes to toast them before adding them to the chocolate, but it’s up to you.).
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees
- Grease an 11×13 pan
- Place butter and chocolate in a pan on medium to low heat until both are completely melted.
- Add sugar, mix until blended
- Add flour, mix until blended
- Add eggs, mix until blended
- Add vanilla and salt, mix until blended.
- Add walnuts (if using).
- Pour into greased pan
- Bake for 30 minutes – NO MORE
As long as your oven is close to temperature you’ll be fine. When you pull them out, you’ll wonder if they are really done. The top should have a light crust, but still look a little moist.
Allow them time to cool before cutting.
Serve with milk.
The recipe can be halved, but really who would want to do that?