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Nutty Chocolate Brownies

My husband Jon is a card-carrying brownie lover. Not just any brownies — he especially likes chocolatey brownies with lots of nuts, and he prefers a cakey texture (as opposed to fudgy). Perhaps second only to his penchant for cakey nutty brownies is his devotion to all things coconut. The idea of combining these elements to create his “dream brownie” was the inspiration for “Nutty Chocolate Brownies,” which will appear in my upcoming book, 1,000 Vegan Recipes, coming out later this year.

Jon couldn’t even wait for these brownies to cool out of the oven, much less until the book comes out, so you shouldn’t have to either — the recipe is below. Another great thing about these brownies is their versatility: if you’re not a fan of coconut, leave out the coconut extract and shredded coconut and use soy milk or other non-dairy milk instead of the coconut milk. If you don’t like pecans, swap them for another nut. You can even leave the nuts out entirely, but then they wouldn’t be very nutty brownies, would they?

Nutty Chocolate Brownies
This recipe is from 1,000 Vegan Recipes by Robin Robertson © 2009.

1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup neutral vegetable oil
3/4 cup coconut milk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 teaspoon coconut extract
1/2 cup coarsely chopped raw pecans
1/2 cup vegan semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup shredded sweetened coconut

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease an 8-inch square baking pan and set aside. In a large bowl, combine the flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
2. In a medium bowl, mix together the sugar and oil until well blended. Stir in the coconut milk, vanilla and coconut extracts, and blend until smooth. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, stirring to blend. Fold in the pecans, chocolate chips, and coconut.
3. Scrape the batter into the prepared baking pan, and bake until the center is set and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 40 minutes. Let the brownies cool 30 minutes before serving.