When I began the Bewitching Kitchen I hoped it would reflect our day to day cooking,  from meat to fish, from pastas to grains, with frequent bread baking and infrequent sweets popping up on its pages.    I also hoped that the move to Los Angeles and the nano-kitchen wouldn’t dramatically change anything, but I recently realized that something’s been bothering me:  I haven’t made any “sweets”  in over a month!!!

To return a sense of normalcy to the nano-kitchen, this week I baked a batch of butterscotch brownies and surprised our new labmates with it.   I followed a recipe I’ve been remembering ever since I saw it in one of my favorite blogs, Fig Jam and Lime Cordial.

(from Fig Jam and Lime Cordial, originally from  Molly O’Neill’s New York Cookbook)
receita em portugues na segunda pagina

75g   all purpose flour (1/2 cup)
1 tsp baking powder
65 g  unsalted butter (1/4 cup)
215 g   brown sugar (1 cup, well packed)
1 large egg
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2  cup chopped walnuts (OR omit the walnuts, and double the choc chips amount)
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Heat  the oven to 350F  (175 C), and line a   8″ square pan (20 cm)  with parchment paper.

In a small bowl, combine the flour and baking powder.  Melt the butter in a small saucepan or in the microwave, and add the brown sugar, stirring well until dissolved and smooth.  Remove from the heat, and allow it to cool for 5 minutes (do not skip this step or you might end with scrambled eggs later).

Add the egg  and vanilla extract, mix until incorporated.  Add the flour and  baking powder mix,  stir vigorously to combine.   Gently mix in the walnuts and chocolate.  Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and  bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the top feels firm to the touch.   You can insert a toothpick to test if it’s fully baked, but try not to over bake it.

Remove from the oven, let it cool in the pan for half an hour, transfer  to a cooling rack.  When cool, cut in small squares with a very sharp knife.


to print the recipe, click here

Comments: According to Celia you can omit the walnuts, and double the amount of chocolate instead.  They’ll be a bit more gooey that way.  I advise you to use the best tasting chocolate you can find and afford, because it’s the prominent flavor in this sweet.   Celia warned that they would be “flat and ugly, cracking all over as you slice them.”   Well, what they may lack in looks they deliver in flavor: my new colleagues inhaled them, leaving only a few crumbs at the end of the (successful!) meeting.  😉

Note to self:  This recipe makes a very small batch, if  serving at a party, make a double batch because they will disappear quickly.

ONE YEAR AGO: Autumn Vegetable Soup

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(blog Fig. Jam and Lime Cordial)

75 g de farinha de trigo (1 / 2 xícara)
1 colher de chá de fermento em pó
65 g de manteiga sem sal (1 / 4 de xícara)
215 g de açúcar mascavo (1 xicara)
1 ovo grande
1 / 2 colher de cha’ de extrato de baunilha
1 / 2 xícara de nozes picadas (ou omitir as nozes e usar o dobro da quantidade de chocolate)
1 / 2 xícara de chips de chocolate meio-amargo

Aqueça o forno a 175 C e forre uma forma quadrada (20 cm) com papel manteiga.

Em uma tigela pequena, misture a farinha e o fermento em pó. Derreta a manteiga em uma panelinha ou no microondas, e acrescente o açúcar mascavo, mexendo bem até dissolver. Retire do fogo e deixe esfriar por 5 minutos (não pule esta etapa, ou você pode acabar com ovos mexidos).

Adicione o ovo e a baunilha, misture até incorporar. Adicione a farinha e o fermento em pó, mexendo vigorosamente para combinar. Misture delicadamente as nozes e o chocolate. Coloque a massa na assadeira preparada e asse por 20-25 minutos, até que a superficie fique firme. Você pode inserir um palito para testar se está totalmente assado.

Retire do forno, deixe esfriar na assadeira por meia hora, depois transfira para uma gradinha para que esfrie por completo. Quando esfriar, corte em quadradinhos com uma faca bem afiada.


  1. I’ve loved butterscotch brownies since childhood. We called them “blondies”. Such a great flavor! How can you go wrong with BUTTER, BROWN SUGAR and VANILLA. I’ve never tried them with chocolate mixed in. I’ve used recipes that mix in white chocolate chunks along with some coconut. Thanks for the reminder to put these back in “the rotation” Sally!


  2. Indeed, Michael, when you mix butter, brown sugar and vanilla, life gets immediately brighter! Adding chocolate just takes it to Nirvana level…

    Thanks for stopping by, and I hope you’ll have some blondies this weekend!😉


  3. That’s probably 65g butter, not 654g, right?🙂
    Do you think these would work with chopped chocolate instead of chocolate chips? (I don’t think they have those here.)

    I enjoy reading your blog, and yesterday I made semolina buns – they turned out great. I am also planning to start “growing” my own sourdough starter, I’ll be following instructions in the link you gave. Hopefully, I’ll have something good to report in a few days🙂


  4. Butter is good, but I will correct that typo right away….🙂
    Thanks for letting me know…

    I look forward to hearing from your sourdough adventures!

    forgot to answer you: yes, they will work with chopped chocolate, I intend to do that next time…


  5. Well, I made them on Friday, used chopped dark chocolate, no nuts. They turned out great! Made a double batch, so we had some leftover for the next day, and my son wanted to have them for breakfast🙂 I will definitely be making these again. Thanks for the recipe!


  6. I just tried to make these, but it was a miserable fail. I simply could not get the eggs and the butterscotch mixture to combine. I either got scrambled eggs or hardened butterscotch!
    It was so frustrating because these seemed to be so good! Oh well…😦


    • Gosh, Natalie… I am so sorry this did not work for you! I wonder what the problem was…

      I will get in touch with Celia, I got the recipe from her blog, she is a much more qualified baker than me, maybe she’s got some ideas of what could have gone wrong

      I will get back to you on this by email or here….


  7. My advice to Natalie–first add flour and baking powder to butter/sugar mixture, then add the egg. It won’t turn to scrambled eggs that way. I have a recipe very similar to this one that combines in that order, but also has some shredded coconut in it.


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