It’s unclear exactly when cacao came on the scene or who invented it. According to Hayes Lavis, cultural arts curator for the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian, ancient Olmec pots and vessels from around 1500 B.C. were discovered in Southern Mexico with traces of theobromine, a stimulant compound found in chocolate and tea.
It wasn’t until the 16th Century that chocolate was known to Europeans. Christopher Columbus encountered cacao on his fourth voyage to the New World. But it wasn’t until after the conquest of the Aztecs by Hernan Cortez, that chocolate was largely import fist to Spain and then the rest of Europe.
Chocolate has heart healthy properties and it has been stated that it is also an aphrodisiac. When it comes to great discoveries, in my book, chocolate ranks high on my list.
¼ c. Merlot
2 eggs, room temperature
¾ c. white sugar
4 oz. dark chocolate
½ c. butter, cut into pieces
1 tsp. vanilla extract
¼ c. cocoa powder
½ c. All Purpose flour
½ tsp sea salt
2 tbsp. Merlot
2 oz. semi-sweet chocolate
1 tbsp. unsalted butter
Preheat oven to 350°F. On the stovetop, in a small saucepan over medium heat, melt the chocolate and butter until smooth. Add wine and whisk until fully incorporated and then remove from heat. Add eggs and whisk until smooth. Add sugar and vanilla and whisk well. Add flour, salt and cocoa powder and mix well.
Next, pour batter into a 9x9” tin foil covered baking pan. Bake in oven for 25 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. While the brownies are baking, for the glaze melt the butter and semi-sweet chocolate until smooth. Then, whisk in the wine and set aside.
After removing brownies from the over, let them cool. Next, drizzle the glaze over the brownies and spread the topping using a rubber spatula. Enjoy, JW