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Suvir Saran

Blondies

34 posts in this topic

What should one from another culture (like me) know about Blondies?

As a kid, I grew up eating desserts from many different countries. I was familiar with several westedn desserts long before moving to the US. Blondies never made it to my world in India.

I am ready to learn all there is to know about them.

What should I know?

Is there a near perfect recipe for them?

WHen does one eat them?

Any Blondie lore?

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A blondie is simply a pan cookie. You make chocolate-chip cookie batter and instead of putting it in dollops on cookie sheets you put it all in one big mass in a rectangular baking pan, and when it's done you cut it into squares -- like brownies. The standard Toll House cookie recipe works very well for this; we make it all the time at our house.


Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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A blondie is simply a pan cookie. You make chocolate-chip cookie batter and instead of putting it in dollops on cookie sheets you put it all in one big mass in a rectangular baking pan, and when it's done you cut it into squares -- like brownies. The standard Toll House cookie recipe works very well for this; we make it all the time at our house.

That simple, eh?

You use Tollhouse cookie stuff? Really? Is it like "Duncan Hines"? Amazing stuff I learn daily at eGullet.

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I think the blondie recipe from Nestle is identical to the Toll House cookie recipe, save for the different cooking method:

http://www.verybestbaking.com/Recipes/Sear...7&BrandSiteID=2


Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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I try not to give my personal business to Nestle. Are there any other recipes or tips??

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I guess I can still use the recipe and just not use Nestle chips.

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Oh, I didn't imagine you'd use crappy ass Nestle chips. You definitely want to use a better species of chocolate. Just in terms of the proportions of ingredients, though, the Nestle recipe is excellent. You can vary it in all the ways you can vary chocolate-chip cookie recipes if you want to emphasize crunch or other attributes, but the basic Toll House recipe is well balanced, time tested, and gives good results in most every instance.


Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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Oh, I didn't imagine you'd use crappy ass Nestle chips. You definitely want to use a better species of chocolate. Just in terms of the proportions of ingredients, though, the Nestle recipe is excellent. You can vary it in all the ways you can vary chocolate-chip cookie recipes if you want to emphasize crunch or other attributes, but the basic Toll House recipe is well balanced, time tested, and gives good results in most every instance.

Good to know. I was getting a little worried that you were endorsing Nestle. :wink:

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Oh, I didn't imagine you'd use crappy ass Nestle chips. You definitely want to use a better species of chocolate.

And what would you suggest I use Fat Guy?

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What should one from another  culture (like me) know about Blondies?

That they are fake!! Imposters! Poseurs! Stay away!! :shock:

And aside from that, I don't mind so much when they're called "blondies." At least that name suggests they're something in their own right, which perhaps they are. I turn into a vampire when they're called "blond brownies." BROWNIES ARE NOT BLONDE!!!

Well, you asked. :smile:

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Suvir, I'm a big fan of El Rey Bucare chocolate chips for their funky, almost fermented taste, but if you're a serious bitter chocolate lover you might want something more than the 58% they offer. If you don't need the convenience of chips, you can just go straight to a block of chocolate like Valrhona 72% and chunk it up yourself.


Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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I have a recipe for one with white chocolate and macadamia nuts. It's pretty rich, calling for 12 oz of white chocolate total. It's in a Bon Appetit Favorite Restaurant Recipes special edition (1992) but it's not on the website for some reason. PM me if you want it.

It's not a toll house cookie or a brownie, but it's still pretty good. Actually, the recipe is from Stephen Pyles of Goodfellow's in Minneapolis who says it's "the brownie of childhood, only made with white chocolate instead of dark."

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I agree. Not that there are official definitions in this regard, but to me a white chocolate "brownie" (dare I ask what it should be called . . . ) does not qualify as a blondie. In a brownie the chocolate permeates the entire thing. In a blondie the chocolate should be in chip or chunk form surrounded by cookie-ish dough.


Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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To me 'blondie' means chewy/cakey in texture - i.e., a non-chocolate brownie (although chips are optional) - not crispy/cookie. And I'm with cakewalk here - a brownie without chocolate is like, like, a weebl episode without pie.

If we're talking crisp bar cookies, my favorite take on FG's idea is Maida Heatter's Crisp Toffee Bars from her 'Book of Great Chocolate Desserts.' No eggs, dark brown sugar, nuts and chocolate chips, dough spread thin in a jelly-roll pan, so they turn out toasty crunchy yummy.

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I'm sticking with the Nestle definition for both the basic chocolate chip cookie and the basic blondie. I can't say for sure, but I think you'll find this to be the one that resonates with the greatest number of Americans -- at the very least most anyone will have to admit that like it or not Nestle has defined the American chocolate chip cookie genre for generations. Our house recipe is just slightly different, but still recognizable as Toll House-derived:

  • * 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
    * 1 teaspoon baking soda
    * 1 teaspoon salt
    * 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
    * 3/4 cup granulated sugar
    * 3/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
    * 2 teaspoons premium vanilla extract (such as Nielsen-Massey)
    * 2 jumbo eggs
    * 12 oz bittersweet chocolate chips or chunks

The departures from Toll House are double the vanilla, larger eggs, non-Nestle chocolate, no nuts, and a couple of specifications that are lacking in the Toll House recipe (dark brown sugar, unsalted butter). Also, we do all the mixing by hand -- literally.


Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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As Cathyl says, maybe it's a regional thing. Growing up in Canada, a blondie was also called a "Butterscotch Brownie", had no chocolate of any kind in the recipe.

Blend and pat into 8" greased pan :

1/2 c Brown sugar

1/3 c. butter

1 c. flour

Mix together:

2 eggs

1 c. brown sugar

2 T. flour

1/2 t. baking powder

3 T. cream

1 t. vanilla

1/2 c. chopped walnuts and/or coconut

Pour into pan. Bake at 350 1/2 hour,,,or slightly less

Killer. A Canadian Blondie,


Margaret McArthur

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Studs Terkel

1912-2008

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Blondies (Butterscotch Brownies -- the formal name)

1/3 cup butter

¼ tsp. salt or less

1 cup light brown sugar

2 unbeaten eggs

1 tsp. vanilla

½ cup sifted flour

1. Melt butter. Remove from heat and stir in sugar until dissolved.

2. Beat in remaining ingredients except for the strawberries. Mix only until flour is incorporated.

3. Bake in a greased and floured 8” square pan at 350 degrees for 23 minutes. Do not overbake.

Do not attempt to cut into squares until cool.

Chocolate chips, nuts or small pieces of fruit may be stirred in before pouring the batter into the baking pan.

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