Friends! I finally get to tell you about a very fun thing I got to do! Eat the Book is a new series from Reese’s Book Club, Hello Sunshine, and Kitchenaid, and the first episode centers around The Proposal! I got to hang out with host Christina Milian, and chef Karyn Tomlinson, while we cooked and ate and drank cocktails and let me tell you, being on a cooking show for one of my books was a dream I didn’t even know I had. You can watch the whole thing here, and see some of the recipes! Stay tuned for more episodes that center around other Reese book club picks — they’ll be posting them on their YouTube channel and their Instagram!
Okay and this is related to the above — if you watch the episode, you’ll see that the chef is using these long skinny tongs for all of her cooking. Everyone on set was OBSESSED with them, myself included: we all asked her where they came from (like, one of the camera guys came over during a break to ask her about them because he wanted to get them for his mom). I ordered them I think that same day, and I’ve used them basically constantly since they arrived, I almost never use my regular tongs anymore. They’re both strong and precise, so I can use them for big pieces of meat, for vegetables, to pick up and flip tortillas…I reach for them for almost everything now.
In just a few days a book I adored will be out in the world, and if you haven’t already preordered Honey Girl, you should do that right now! It is a moving coming of age romance between Grace Porter and the wife that she drunkenly got married to in Vegas, Yuki Yamamoto, and I can’t wait for lots of people to fall in love with it.
The other day I was in the mood for a warm brownie with cold vanilla ice cream on top, so I made a pan of brownies. But before I did that, I read this great kind of existential piece from Eric Kim (who I love following on Instagram and who just started at the New York Times food section!) about brownies and the different kinds of them and why people feel so strongly about them, and I recommend the piece and also the recipe, adapted from Alice Medrich. Before this, my go to brownie recipe was a different Alice Medrich brownie recipe, but I decided to change it up and try this one, and I may have actually liked it better. It was easy and fast and delicious, and I also just recommend the concept in general of a warm brownie with cold vanilla ice cream (I know, revolutionary!).
4 ounces or 113 grams unsweetened chocolate
8 tablespoons or 113 grams (or 1 stick) unsalted butter, cubed
1 1/4 cups or 250 grams granulated sugar
1 teaspoon or 5 grams vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon or 3 grams fine sea salt (I used Diamond Crystal kosher salt)
1/2 cup or 60 grams all purpose flour
Preheat oven to 400 degrees, and make sure one rack is in the middle. Line an 8x8 baking pan with parchment paper.
Roughly chop the chocolate (a serrated knife works best for this, fyi) and put the chocolate and the butter together into a metal or other heat proof bowl over a small saucepan with water in it (or a double boiler) — you don’t want the water to touch the bottom of the bowl. Have the water at a simmer. Melt the chocolate and butter together, stirring frequently so the chocolate doesn’t burn, and then remove from heat and let cool until it’s just warm to the touch. The original recipe has you do this all in the same bowl, which is efficient and means there’s only that one bowl to wash, but if you, like me, are the type to forget a metal bowl is hot and then touch it with your fingers before it’s cool enough, this is where we both should scrape the chocolate/butter mixture into a different, not hot, mixing bowl before moving on with the rest of the recipe.
However you do it, now add the sugar, vanilla, and salt to the bowl and whisk them into the chocolate/butter mixture. Then add the eggs one at a time, and whisk until the batter is shiny and smooth, about 1 to 2 minutes. And finally, add the flour and stir with a rubber spatula until the flour has disappeared.
Transfer the batter to the prepared pan and smooth out the top. Bake for 20 minutes, rotating halfway through. Cool on a rack, cut into 16 pieces and eat, preferably with cold ice cream.
I hope you eat something delicious this weekend!