When you find something you really like, it’s easy not to mess with it. For example, I really like Ghiradelli’s Double Chocolate Brownie Mix. Generally, I’m not a fan of boxed mixes for baked goods, but these are pretty amazing.
However, at some point in my life, I don’t even remember when, I started messing with them. And now, I like them even more.
To make these amped up brownies, you start with a few simple things: the brownie mix, oil, water, an egg, cherry preserves, instant espresso, and dried cherries.
Generally, you just follow the directions on the box, but when you measure out the water, add a couple of heaping teaspoons of instant espresso and dissolve before adding it to the oil and egg. Then, when you add the brownie mix to the bowl, throw in a handful of chopped cherries. Mix everything together.
Now, here comes the best part. When you go to pour the brownie mix into the pan, only add about half the batter. Then, dot the top of it with small spoonfuls of the cherry preserves. Swirl it just a little bit and then add the rest of the batter to the pan.
Follow the baking directions on the box. I’ve found that sometimes I need to to add just a few minutes more than recommended, so use the toothpick test to check that they are done. However, it should be said that because of the preserves, the toothpick won’t come out completely clean even when the brownies are cooked.
I usually make these brownies in an 8×8 glass pan, but because they are so rich, I cut them into 16 squares. Every time I make them, they go like crazy!