Halloween pumpkin chocolate brownies with spiderweb ganache

Halloween pumpkin treat

Since we’re adopting Halloween just for the fun of it, we’ve also decided to try pumpkin as a sweet ingredient so popular in American cuisine. The pumpkin has such a delicate flavour that it easily adapts to the chocolate, it adds a dose of fibre and lightens an otherwise decadent dessert.

The spiderweb design adds a spooky flair and is surprisingly easy to put together. We might even feel a little less guilty indulging in this chocolatey treat as pumpkin is a vegetable…and this goes (a little) towards the 5 daily servings of fruit and veg, right?

Preparation time : 1 hour

Serves : 8 large brownies

Ingredients :

For the Chocolate batter:

  • 3/4 cup plain flour
  • 1 cup caster sugar
  • 1/4 cup Dutch baking cocoa
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the Pumpkin batter:

  • 1 cup caster sugar
  • 1 cup plain flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 300g fresh pumpkin (we used butternut pumpkin)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 pinch of tumeric (optional)
  • For the chocolate ganache:
  • 70g dark chocolate, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream

For the spiderweb frosting:

  • 2 cups icing sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter, room temperature
  • 1 tbsp heavy cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  1. Preheat oven to 180C with the ovenrack in the center position. Line a 27 x 17cm slice pan with baking paper and brush with butter or coconut oil.
  2. Make chocolate batter by whisking sugar, flour, cocoa, salt and baking powder in a large bowl. Whisk oil, eggs and vanilla seperately and then add to the dry ingredients until just moistened. Batter should be thick.
  3. Cover the base of the lined pan with roughly 2/3 of the chocolate batter.
  4. To make the pumpkin batter first make the pumpkin puree by peeling the pumpkin and roughly chopping it into 15mm cubes.
  5. Put the pumpkin in a microwave-safe bowl with a lid and microwave covered on high for 4 minutes or until the cubes are soft.
  6. Puree these using a stick blender or food processor until smooth. You will need 3/4 cup of puree for this recipe.
  7. Combine sugar, flour, salt, cinnamon and baking powder in a large bowl. We added a pinch of turmeric at this point to enhance the colour.
  8. In a separate bowl combine pumpkin puree and eggs and whisk with a fork.
  9. Gradually add the pumpkin mix to the dry ingredients until just moist.
  10. Spread half the pumpkin mixture over the chocolate mixture. Using a tablespoon, drop scoops of chocolate batter and pumpkin batter on the top then spread and swirl.
  11. Bake until a skewer inserted into the middle of the brownie comes out clean, roughly 25-30 minutes.
  12. Once cool enough to handle, the brownie can be removed from the pan and allowed to cool on a wire rack. The brownie must be completely cooled before adding the ganache icing. Once cooled, cut the brownie into even squares, depending on what size you prefer.
  13. First make the white icing for the spiderweb design by combining icing sugar, butter, extract and cream with an electric beater until smooth, if the mixture is a little dry add more cream. Add the icing mixture to a piping bag with a small round nozzle. If you do not have a piping bag, you can use a clean plastic bag, like a ziploc bag with a corner cut to make a tiny hole.
  14. To make the chocolate ganache, add the finely chopped chocolate to a heatproof bowl. Heat the cream in a small saucepan over medium heat until bubbles start appearing around the edges.
  15. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate and allow it to melt the chocolate for a minute then stir until all lumps have melted.
  16. Using a spatula spread the warm ganache over the brownie squares to cover.
  17. Using the piping bag, pipe a white icing swirl starting from the centre and working outwards.
  18. Once all swirls have been drawn, use a skewer to drag lines of the icing from the centre outwards to form a spiderweb design.
  19. Allow the ganache to cool and serve.

Recipe by A Better Choice

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