Yay Brownies!!!! This is a fantastic recipe from the Jolly Tomato that we have made a couple times. Of course Ronna and I have changed a few things around because that is half the fun, right?! It is one of my favorites when I need something a little sweet and yet a little healthy. It seems like we don't make sweet treats often, but when we do we make a lot of them. So this recipe is actually "doubled" and made two 9x13 pans. The finished brownie was about an inch tall but I am sure you could make them in a deeper pan if you like your brownies thick.
My husband, dad, and brother are in the middle of corn chopping right now... so we have been making the crew lunches every day. We like to put a little treat in the lunches and figured kale brownies would be a fun way to hide some extra greens from them : )
I asked my husband what he thought of the brownies and he said they were fantastic, then seeing the silly grin on my face asked, "Why, what did you do to them?" He knows us so well! Even after explaining that the brownies had kale in them and half the sugar of the original recipe, he still said they were great!
So give them a try!!! The kale is processed in a blender so there aren't pieces of green showing and the dark chocolate helps disguise them as well. I may or may not be eating one as I'm typing ;) In the past we used some of the curly kale from the greenhouse but this time we tried mixing the curly, lacinato, and scarlet kale... and it was still soooo yummy! Jeanne from the Jolly Tomato puts the kale leaves in a steamer and steams for 5 minutes before pureeing the kale in a processor. This works great but this last time Ronna used her Vitamix to sort of skip a step. So depending what you have to work, you might find one way works better than the other. Check out the recipe recipe from the Jolly Tomato ! The main changes we did were-half the sugars, substituted in some whole wheat flour, and used almond bark instead of dark chocolate and add nuts. These will make more sense below in the ingredients list.
This is the original recipe 'doubled' - so it will make two 9x13 pans.
2 large bunch kale - we had about 4 cups packed, chopped
1 cup whole wheat flour
1½ cups all purpose flour
3 T. dark cocoa powder
2 tsp. salt
2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
3 ounces almond bark - white or chocolate works fine
1 cup (8 ounces) unsalted butter
1½ cups granulated sugar
½ cup packed brown sugar
8 eggs at room temperature, beaten - we used 10 because ours were smaller
3 tsp. vanilla extract
Optional - 1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans would work well too. Extra chocolate chips if you want some whole ones.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Wash the kale and pat it dry. Gently tear the leafy portion away from the thick stems. Place the kale leaves in a food processor with 2 cups HOT-like boiling- water and puree the kale. You should have about 2 cups of kale.
Meanwhile, in a small mixing bowl, combine the flour, cocoa powder, and salt. Mix until thoroughly combined.
On the stovetop, melt the butter, the chocolate chips, and the dark chocolate together, stirring until evenly melted and smooth. Remove from heat and add sugars and vanilla mix well. Add kale and mix with the chocolate mixture until combined- make the green disappear! When mixture is close to room temperature add the eggs. This is a good time to add the chopped nuts and chocolate chips. Gently fold in the flour mixture until just barely combined, taking care not to over-mix.
Prepare two 13″x 9″ pans by greasing it with butter or spray of your choice-you can also line it with parchment paper on top of the butter. Carefully pour the brownie batter into the pan. Add any nuts or chocolate to the top if desired. Bake at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Yield: 48 brownies- depending on how you cut your brownies :)
Note: If you use parchment paper - As soon as possible after they come out of the oven, carefully lift the brownies up (by holding on to the parchment paper) and out of the pan (if they sit in the hot pan they may continue to “cook” and may get dry). Allow the brownies to cool while sitting on the parchment paper before cutting them.
We cooked ours without parchment paper, for 40 minutes and let them sit in the pan to cool and they were still moist. Just depends on your oven, pans, and what you feel like doing!