Rio’s deluxe high tea brownie

Rio's High Tea Deluxe Brownie

RECIPE BY: Rio for the High Tea Challenge


170g unsalted Clover butter
113g semi-sweet chocolate bar, coarsely chopped and divided*
400g granulated sugar*
3 large eggs, at room temperature
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
82g unsweetened natural or dutch-process cocoa powder*
125g all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
225g semi-sweet chocolate chips
100g roasted nuts

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C
  2. grease a 9×13-inch pan
  3. In a microwave-safe bowl, combine the butter and half of the chopped chocolate. Melt in 30-second increments, whisking after each, until completely smooth. Whisk in the sugar until completely combined, then whisk in the eggs and vanilla.
  4. Add the cocoa powder, flour, salt, remaining chopped chocolate, and the chocolate chips. Fold it all together with a silicone spatula or wooden spoon. Batter will be very thick. Spread evenly into prepared pan.
  5. Bake for 30 minutes, then test the brownies with a toothpick. Insert it into the center of the pan. If it comes out with wet batter, the brownies are not done. If there are only a few moist crumbs, the brownies are done. Keep checking every 2 minutes until you have moist crumbs. Brownies typically take 31–32 minutes in my oven.

Nutty Harisa:

75g unsalted Clover butter, at room temperature, plus extra for greasing
150g pistachio kernels
100g caster sugar
100ml sunflower oil
160g Greek-style yogurt
2 British Blacktail Free Range Medium Eggs
350g fine semolina
50g desiccated coconut
¾ tsp Royal Baking Powder
¾ tsp flaked sea salt
2 unwaxed lemons, zest finely grated to make 1 tbsp

For the sugar syrup:

400g caster sugar
2 tbsp lemon juice
1½ tbsp rose water 

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C
  2. Grease a 20x30cm baking tin liberally with butter and set aside.
  3. Put 100g pistachios into the bowl of a food processor and blitz for 1 minute, until very fine.
  4. Transfer to a separate bowl and set aside.
  5. Place the remaining 50g of pistachios in the same food processor (no need to clean it) and pulse-blitz a few times: you just want these pistachios to be coarsely chopped. Transfer to a separate bowl and set aside.
  6. To make the sugar syrup, put 245ml of water and the sugar into a small saucepan and place on a medium-high heat. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to medium and simmer for 10 minutes. Stir in the lemon juice and rose water and remove from the heat. Set aside to cool.
  7. Put the sugar, butter, oil and yogurt into the bowl of a free-standing mixer and whisk on a high speed for about 3 minutes, until well combined and smooth. Reduce the speed to medium and add the eggs, one at a time. Whisk for another minute.
  8. Add the semolina, coconut, baking powder, flaked sea salt and lemon zest to the finely-ground pistachios and mix to combine. Add the pistachio mixture to the wet mixture and whisk until just combined, you don’t want to overwork it, then tip the batter into the prepared baking dish. Even out with a spatula and sprinkle the coarsely chopped pistachios on top. Using your fingers, gently press the pistachios into the batter, without completely submerging them. Set aside for 10 minutes, then bake in the middle of the oven for 15 minutes, until the cake is almost set and the sides have taken on some colour.
  9. Remove from the oven and, using a small sharp knife, make a diagonal cross-hatch pattern across the top of the batter. Space the lines about 5cm apart, doing five lines one way and five lines the other. Return to the oven for a final 10 minutes, until the surface is golden brown and a knife inserted into the centre comes out clean.
  10. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool for 10 minutes, then evenly pour the cooled sugar syrup over the cake. Set aside for an hour, until completely cool.
  11. When serving, follow the indentations to cut out individual pieces.

Tahina grass:

1 1/2 c. tahini
3/4 tsp. kosher salt
1 1/2 c. granulated sugar
1/3 c. water
1/2 vanilla bean (or 1 tsp pure vanilla extract)
1 tsp green food colouring

  1. Make a syrup with sugar, water and vanilla.
  2. Put Tahina in hot syrup and wait for it to sieze. Add food colouring

Nut crumble:

½ tsp cinnamon
4 tbsp plain flour
85g unsalted chilled Clover butter, cubed
85g soft brown sugar
50g oats
25g chopped walnut

  1. Combine all ingredients. Put onto a lined baking tray and bake until golden or toast on a pan

Chocolate touille:

½ cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup confectioners’ sugar, sifted
4 egg whites
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup cake flour

  1. Cream together and spread onto oven dish and bake for 15 minutes.