my famous brownies

Ok, well they're only famous in my family, but still. It's the one single recipe that I know I make better than my mom, so to me that's something. She can take care of the gourmet chicken recipes and apple pie (seriously, nobody else on the planet should be authorized to make apple pies -- hers put all others to shame) but when it comes to brownies, nobody else in my family even bothers. It's my territory.

I've been making these in some form or another since I was old enough to bake -- the recipe is actually adapted from a kid's cook book I had when I was a child! They might not suit everyone, but these are exactly what I look for in a brownie. They're dense enough to warrant being called "brownie" instead of "cake," but not so dense that they're fudge-like. They're sweet and chocolatey, but it's not like Willy Wonka's factory exploded in your mouth. There's such a thing as too sweet and too chocolatey. And they end up with a really amazing, thin crusty top that I've never been able to duplicate with any other brownie recipe.

Ok, so here's what you'll need!

1/2 c. melted margarine
1 c. sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
2 eggs
2 oz. unsweetened chocolate
3/4 c. flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt

Preheat the oven to 350'. Melt the chocolate in the microwave on low heat. Mix the margarine and sugar with a wooden spoon. (I always taste test at this point. Margarine + sugar = yum!) Add vanilla, eggs and melted chocolate. Mix well. In a separate bowl, stir together flour, baking powder and salt. Add to the batter and stir well. Oil a 9" square baking pan (note: you can use an 8" pan, but for some reason they come out sooo much better in a 9" pan) Spread batter into the pan, bake for 30 minutes. Once cool, serve and enjoy! (And if you live with hungry siblings, you should stash a few brownies in your room so that they don't eat them all.)