Continuing with the themes of "vegetables in baked goods" and "applesauce instead of oil," here's a recipe that we actually handed out during the McGill Open House a few weekends ago, when we intended for the theme of our booth to be protein, but sadly came to the realization that Open House is attended by 17-year-olds that care only about figuring out the easiest way of getting into med school.
I actually encountered the idea of black beans in brownies during my internship last summer (incidentally, I'm starting another internship in two weeks and today was my orientation day, which got me really excited for it), but unfortunately lost the recipe. After doing a search online, a little tweaking and making some test batches, we finally "mass produced" these goodies--which translates to spending a Saturday afternoon at one of my team members' apartment, churning out 3 pans at a time from her oven and tiny convection oven, before we came out with 12 9"x13" pans of 32 brownies, or a grand total of 384 brownies.
The fantastic thing about these brownies is that they contain no flour, which means that the structure is completely based on the beans (which are a great source of fibre as well as protein) and the eggs.
Overall, most people liked the brownies even though they admittedly don't taste as good as normal ones. I found that you have to warn people that they're made of black beans, or at least that they consist of a "secret ingredient", so that they can expect that a little off-taste and fully appreciate that they are quite good despite the weird ingredient.
I used these lovely, organic salt-free canned beans when I made my test batches because I was weary of the amount of salt that comes in regular canned foods, but when we made our large amounts with regular canned beans and no added salt, everything turned out ok (just make sure you rinse your beans very well, perhaps.)
Black Bean Brownies
Adapted from RecipeZaar
Makes 16 brownies
- 1 (398 mL/14 fl oz.) can black beans, rinsed and drained
- 3 eggs, large, beaten
- 45 mL (3 tbsp) applesauce, unsweetened
- 5 mL (1 tsp) vanilla extract
- 125 mL (½ cup) sugar
- 60 mL (¼ cup) cocoa powder
- 1 mL (¼ tsp) salt
- Preheat oven to 175°C (350°F). Grease and flour an 8” square baking pan.
- Purée black beans in a blender or food processor. If it is not moist enough, you may need to add one of the eggs into the food processor.
- Mix black bean purée with eggs, applesauce and vanilla extract in a large bowl. Mix in sugar, cocoa powder and salt.
- Pour ingredients into prepared pan. Bake for approximately 25 - 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the centre of the brownies comes out clean.
- Let cool before cutting.