My two mile hike today exhausted me. At the time I felt fine. I got a slight stitch in my side early on but it wasn't that painful and I just kept trudging. I wasn't even out of breath when I got back to my apartment (a true surprise, I genuinely have not exercised at all in years). About an hour after I got home and the adrenaline wore off, though, I completely crashed and burned. I have been sitting here for about 5 hours now trying not to fall asleep! In order to keep myself awake I decided to make brownies. I have some Green & Black's bittersweet chocolate bars that Master Charles bestowed upon me as a Christmas gift, and I'd been saving them with the intention of turning them into some hot chocolate. Instead I melted them down and made brownies. Now, I initially decided against making anything because I have no measuring spoons. Mum had an extra set, but I forgot them. I thought maybe I'd just go buy a brownie mix, but then figured if I did that I may as well buy measuring spoons ...... and everything else on my (very lengthy) list, and the thought exhausted me. So I improvised.
I know from experience (I've been cooking actively since I was 5 years old - I used to make cookies and fancy scrambled eggs for The Lieutenant when he would have friends over) that the cap on a bottle of vanilla (or any flavor) extract is 1 teaspoon. Using a handy-dandy Google converter, I figured out that 3 teaspoons = 1 tablespoon (how bizarre that I didn't already know that!). I then used the lid from my vanilla extract to check the lid on my jug of canola oil (which equaled 1 tablespoon). I used both of those to measure out and mix up the equivalent of one ounce of bakers chocolate (I only had 2.4 ounces of Green & Blacks and I like my brownies very chocolatey). I was very careful not to mix the melted chocolate/butter/sugar in with the eggs too fast because I didn't want to end up with a chocolate omellette.
Everything went well (I ended up doubling the vanilla because it makes things taste good and I wanted to balance out the strength of the chocolate), and I managed to use two mini bread pans instead of an 8x8 like the recipe called for (which I halved...I figured a 13" circular cake pan would be too big). Currently I have two massively thick brownies cooking in the oven. I have no idea if I will manage to succeed here, or if I'll end up with a kind of cadbury egg type brownie. I really hope they turn out well, because Green & Black's is really expensive!
Recipe to follow.