Why not add a little spice to your Cinco de Mayo celebration on the 5th of May by serving Chocolate, Chile, and Cinnamon Brownies! Sound a little strange? Actually, chocolate and cinnamon are a classic combination in Mexican desserts and beverages; chile powder adds a subtle kick to these unusual, but delicious brownies.
Chocolate, Chile, and Cinnamon brownies can be stirred together (no mixer needed) in a matter of minutes by starting with Mom’s Brownie Mix, which is hopefully already sitting on your pantry shelf. (If you don’t have it already made, it can be put together very quickly.) I like to use the chopper attachment to my Cuisinart Smart Stick (I can throw the attachments in the dishwasher which is another timesaver), or my miniature food processor to chop the walnuts quickly; you can save even more time by purchasing chopped walnuts.
Did you know there is a difference between chile powder and chili powder? According to Mark R. Vogel in his essay, What’s in a Name?, “Chile powder is not chili powder, (notice the spelling). Chile powder is nothing but dried chile peppers. Chili powder is a mixture of chile powder and other spices, usually garlic, oregano, coriander, cumin and cloves.” These fabulously unique brownies contain chile powder. I’ve used New Mexico chile powder, which is not as mild as California or pasilla chile powders, but not as hot as arbol chipotle chile powders. If you can’t find New Mexico chile powder, mix 1/2 teaspoon arbol chile powder (very hot) with 4 1/2 teaspoons California chile powder (very mild).
Because they are spicy, vanilla ice cream is the perfect accompaniment. If you want to make dessert even more special, use these brownies as a base for a brownie Sunday; top the warm brownies with vanilla ice cream and hot fudge sauce which has a little cinnamon stirred in. Top with real whipped cream (the canned variety in the dairy case is fine; just make sure it isn’t fake whipped cream. Frozen whipped topping is anathema and will ruin the dessert!), and a sprinkling of chopped nuts. Add a maraschino cherry for color and you have a delicious Mexican Sundae to serve with your favorite Mexican meal.
Chocolate, Chile, and Cinnamon Brownies
Makes 16 Brownies
2 1/2 cups Mom's Brownie Mix
1 1/2 tablespoons New Mexico Chile Powder
1 1/2 tablespoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup chopped walnut(s)
2 tablespoons powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon New Mexico Chile Powder
Mix the brownie mix, chili powder, and cinnamon; stir in the vanilla, eggs, and walnuts. Pour the batter into a greased and floured or parchment-lined 9” square baking pan. Bake in a preheated 350° oven 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted halfway from the edge to the center comes out clean. Remove from the oven to a cooling rack.
Mix the powdered sugar and chili powder. Sprinkle over the brownies. Cut into squares and serve warm or cool.
Amount Per Serving
Calories 190 Calories from Fat 94
Percent Total Calories From:
Fat 49% Protein 6% Carb. 45%
Nutrient Amount per Serving
Total Fat 10 g
Saturated Fat 2 g
Cholesterol 27 mg
Sodium 103 mg
Total Carbohydrate 21 g
Dietary Fiber 1 g
Sugars 0 g
Protein 3 g
Vitamin A 1% Vitamin C 1% Calcium 0% Iron 4%