There comes a point when one has to realise they’ve stolen enough food off their work colleagues, and it’s time to put the fucking oven on. You’re going to need 100g of plain flour, and also 100g of self-raising flour. Definitely sift all that into a bowl through a sieve, or it will be totally dicks. Also important is you select plain flour that’s proud of its heritage, in a way that’s appealing to environmentalists concerned about food air miles, and also appealing to patriots concerned about continuing to be fuckends. For your self-raising flour, that’s not as important, but it should still be sneakily reminding you it’s not some of that foreign shit, and also suggesting a brave new British dawn is on its way. Fuck you, nationalism, if you weren’t so carblicious and tasty. Be careful to bollocks it up when you open the self-raising flour, otherwise it might not go everywhere when you pour it out. This next bit is going to require some measuring implements, but a quick look into the junk shop wizard’s dwellings of the Other and Misc. draw should be enough to make you give up hope of finding anything accurate, and you’re just going to have to guess everything again. Actually, fuck that for a minute, because there should be caster sugar in there. We’re not making some fucking loaf of bread here. Anything which doesn’t have sugar as the heaviest ingredient is basically fennel, so dump 200g of it in. Again, unnecessarily exclusivist and fascistic ingredients are the best.
But wait and what the fuck, they can actually grow sugar in Britain? Since when did that happen? Why haven’t I snuck out to a sugar farm in camouflage gear and tried to ram a whole field into my face?
Never mind that for now, though. Gather together 3 tbsp. of cocoa powder, and get that in there as well. Of course they’re fucking heaped spoons. What the fuck, mate? I usually put it through the sieve, because it’s more fun. I wouldn’t bother doing that with the sugar, and if the sugar you’ve got does need sifting, someone’s probably gone and done a wank in it or something, and you need to get different housemates. A pinch of salt probably means about this much. I love salt so much that I think of food as the garnish and salt as the real reason I’ve sat down for the evening. But look at my hand. Just look at it. Where have the years gone? They used to be so smooth and pliant. It can’t be too long to go now. Not long until the final journey. For the first time last week, I saw I had a grey chest hair. I’d always been fine with grey going on on my head, but I never thought about it below the neck line. I stood there for a while, looking in the mirror, imagining my springy, peat-brown pubes all lank and ashen. A sobering moment, looking down from the apex of the hill into the lowlands of the hereafter. Give that a stir for no real reason, and it will probably look like this. It’s all pretty much good to go now, but there’s a few more stages to follow through with if any brownie traditionalists are going to avoid taking issue with the free snacks you’ve just dished out to them. Fold in 270ml of sweetened soya milk, 2 tsp. of vanilla extract, and also 6 tbsp. of sunflower oil. If you’re looking for them to be more gooey, do this with an unsteady hand and have more stuff fall into the bowl when you’re pretending to measure it out. No one’s ever said ‘Hey buddy, these brownies are too moist! Why don’t you go fuck yourself?!’ Let’s get serious now. Fold in 100g of dark chocolate chips, checking it’s not dark chocolate which has milk listed in the ingredients, because that’s milk chocolate and you’ve been sold a lie by some right nobber. There’s quite a few brands out there which only sell in 150g bags, so either you chuck the whole lot in anyway, or inexpertly judge what two-thirds of it is, and then eat the remainder out the bag while you’re standing there. You win either way.
The recipe I’m working from also lists 1 tbsp. of nuts, but if you’re going to put nuts in something, either do it properly or don’t bother. Do enough of them to visually match the amount of chocolate chips. Unless your audience has a nut allergy, in which case probably no nuts is a better amount. Fucking hell, I should have put this on ages ago. Get the oven to 200c, but if you’ve got dials which look like these, where that might be is anyone’s fucking guess. This next bit’s sometimes easy to forget in all the excitement, but that’s a really bad idea, so don’t. Grease up a baking dish or a couple of sandwich tins or whatever you’ve got. Back when my hands were youthful and my scrotum covered in a luxurious forest, I’d spent half an hour walking up and down a bakery aisle looking for grease, only to later be told you just had to smear the tray with butter. That’s pretend butter, vegans. Nothing that’s touched a farm animal, understand?
This is how it is before it goes in the oven. There’ll be remnants left over in the bowl, so eat those now. You might need to get a teaspoon out, so you can scrape bits of the mixture off the wooden spoon, and then use the wooden spoon on the teaspoon, and then the teaspoon on the wooden spoon again, and keep on doing that until you’re eating quarks.
18-20 minutes later, depending on how wet you want it, here it is. It should spring back when gently pressed down, but I’m used to the middle of the tray being a bit slick. Put it on a wire rack to cool down, but because you’ve never even been in a kitchen that had a wire rack in it, just leave it on the hob. And make sure none of the rings are on, otherwise oh shit.
After you’ve left it in the office a few minutes, it should look like this. Soon after, you’ll just be left with a tray.
As you’re getting up the next morning, receive a text from L which you very briefly get offended about, until you realise you’ve misread it and she’s saying the brownies were incredible, not inedible. As if that would fucking happen anyway.
Dedicated to K, who first made these for me and then passed the recipe on, even though she thought adding a lake of maple syrup and Hundreds & Thousands on top of it was just too much. It isn’t too much. It makes it even funner.
Also, it’s definitely a good idea to double all of the amounts listed above, and have yourself a real party.