I have a sweet tooth. And while pregnant I have sweet teeth. I try…okay, not really…but I’m conscious about the fact that my sugar intake is way too high. One way to sweeten without spiking your blood sugar level is by using agave nectar, a natural, low-glycemic sweetener that is the nectar from an agave plant. It’s easy to substitute agave for recipes that call for honey, because the consistency remains the same, but the subbing gets a little less easy when you go from a dry sweetener, like sugar, to a nectar. I consistently use agave in my pancake recipe that is a big hit in our house (pnn-cack? pnn-cack? Liam asks.). I also always use it to toast nuts if I’m adding them to a salad. Beyond that I’ve stuck to the recipes in the following book.
I’m sharing this brownie recipe by request. I’ve been flaunting my agave baking all over Twitter and the masses (okay, like 2 people) have asked for this is a recipe. It comes from a book called Baking with Agave Nectar by Ania Catalano.
Ultimate Fudgy Brownies (Makes 24 2-inch bars)
6 oz. unsweetened chocolate
1 cup unsalted butter or nonhydrogenated butter substitute
4 large eggs
1 1/2 cups light agave nectar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup sprouted spelt flour (I’ve decided this is not my favorite flavor so I’ve done 1/2 spelt and 1/2 unbleached all-purpose flour and also all of it with all-purpose flour.)
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup pecans or walnuts, chopped (optional)
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly oil a 9×13 inch baking pan with canola oil spray.
In a glass bowl, combine the chocolate and butter. Microwave on high settings for 2 minutes. Immediately remove from the microwave and stir until the chocolate is completely melted. In a large bowl, lightly beat the eggs with a wire whisk. Add the agave nectar and vanilla extract. Stir in the melted chocolate mixture. Sift the flour, baking powder, and salt over the chocolate mixture. Gently fold the ingredients, just until the flour is incorporated. Gently fold in the pecans. Be sure not to overmix; the mixture will be lumpy.
Pour into the prepared baking pan. Bake for 30 minutes, or until just set. Do not overbake, or the brownies will lose their fudginess. Let cool in the pan before cutting into bars.
They came out delicious and so moist. I might have over-mixed them according to the recipe, but I’m not sure what the difference would be. As far as comparing them to your average brownie mix…I have to work on tweaking the recipe and baking time, I think. I like my brownies practically raw and really gooey. These ones were more fudgey/cakey (but not dry!).
Good luck with your agave baking! Share if you use or substitute agave and have liked the change.