Daily Herald
Tiramisu Brownies
Published: 10/5/2010 5:24 PM

2 packages (about 20 ounces each) brownie mix

⅔ cup vegetable oil

½ cup cooled brewed coffee

4 large eggs

2 tablespoons cream sherry or Marsala wine

Topping

1 cup heavy (whipping) cream or evaporated milk

¼ cup granulated sugar

1 teaspoon instant coffee granules

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

8 ounces mascarpone cheese

2 tablespoons cream sherry or Marsala wine

1 teaspoon unsweetened cocoa powder, for dusting

Place a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 325 degrees. Lightly mist a 13-by-9-inch metal baking pan with vegetable oil spray and set the pan aside.

Place the brownie mix, oil, coffee, and eggs in a large mixing bowl and stir with a wooden spoon until the ingredients are incorporated, about 50 strokes, or beat with an electric mixer on low speed for 30 seconds. Transfer the batter to the prepared baking pan, smoothing the top with a rubber spatula.

Place the pan in the oven and bake the brownies until the edges have set and the center is still a little soft (press it lightly with a finger), 45-50 minutes. Transfer the baking pan to a wire rack and brush the top of the brownies very lightly with the 2 tablespoons of the sherry or Marsala. Let the brownies cool on the wire rack for 10 minutes, then place them in the refrigerator to cool completely, 30 minutes longer.

Meanwhile, make the tiramisu topping: Place the cream in a large microwave-safe glass mixing bowl with the granulated sugar and coffee powder and stir to mix. Microwave on HIGH for 1 minute. Remove the bowl from the microwave oven and stir until the sugar and coffee powder dissolve. Stir in the vanilla. Place the bowl in the refrigerator to chill for at least 30 minutes.

When the cream and the brownies have chilled, remove the bowl of cream from the refrigerator and beat it with an electric mixer on HIGH until nearly stiff peaks form, 2 minutes. Place the mascarpone in a separate bowl, and using the same beaters, beat on LOW until fluffy; pour in the 2 tablespoons of sherry or Marsala and beat until smooth.

Fold the mascarpone mixture into the whipped cream and beat on medium-high speed until just combined.

Remove the pan of brownies from the refrigerator and spoon the topping over them, smoothing the top with a rubber spatula. Just before serving, sift the cocoa powder over the top of the brownies, then cut them into bars and serve.

Serves 30.

"The Cake Mix Doctor Returns!" by Anne Byrn (2009 Workman)