A chef at Chicago's Palmer House Hotel created the confection after Bertha Palmer requested a dessert for ladies attending the fair; it should be, she said, smaller than a piece of cake, though still retaining cake-like characteristics and easily eaten from boxed lunches. These first brownies featured an apricot glaze and walnuts, and they are still being made at the hotel according to the original recipe.
The earliest published recipes for a brownie like those of today appeared in the Home Cookery (1904, Laconia, NH), Service Club Cook Book (1904, Chicago, IL), The Boston Globe (April 2, 1905 p. 34) and the 1906 edition of The Boston Cooking School Cook Book by Fannie Merritt Farmer. These recipes produced a relatively mild and cake-like brownie. The name "brownie" first appeared in the 1896 version of the cookbook, but this was in reference to molasses cakes baked individually in tin molds, not true brownies.
A second recipe appeared in 1907 in Lowney’s Cook Book, by Maria Willet Howard and published by the Walter M. Lowney Company of Boston, Massachusetts. This recipe added an extra egg and an additional square of chocolate to the Boston Cooking School recipe, creating a richer, fudgier brownie. The recipe was named Bangor Brownies, possibly because it was created by a woman in Bangor, Maine. The Bangor Brownie went on to be rated 3rd in the top 10 snacks a few years later. (Wikipedia)
Five Fun Facts:
- The world’s largest brownie was made in 2001. It weighed in at 3,000 lbs. and was made with 750 lbs. of chocolate chips, 500 lbs. of butter, 850 lbs of sugar, 500 lbs. of flour and 3,500 eggs!
- There are two types of brownies: fudgy and cake-like. According to Greyston Bakery research, fudgy tops the preference list of most consumers.
- The first brownie made was not actually a brownie at all. It was a tasty treat sweetened with molasses that we now know as a blondie. (Click to read about blondies)
- The name "brownie" first appeared in the 1896 version of The Boston Cooking School Cook Book, but this was in reference to molasses cakes baked individually in tin molds, not true brownies.
- Brownies are actually classified as cookies rather than cake.
Five Brownie Recipes:
- Quick Dark Chocolate Brownies - These better-for-you brownies are rich in chocolate, but balanced in sweetness by almonds, which also add a little crunch.
- Brownie Ice Cream Sandwiches - These ice cream sandwiches use brownies instead of cookies for an extra blast of taste.
- Brownies- A quick and easy treat made from scratch.
- Macaroon Brownies- an interesting way to make brownies - with egg whites!
- Spicy Hot Chocolate Brownie Cookies - The taste of a brownie, but in cookie form. Delish!
Click for more brownie recipes.
Nutritional Informations per 2 inch square brownie:
Fat: 7 g
Carbohydrates: 12 g
Cholesterol: 18 mg
Sodium: 82 mg
Protein: 1 g