I saw this recipe on another food bloggers site (http://nimmow.blogspot.com), and being a home brewer, I love any recipes than incorporate beer. We also had some oatmeal stout left from our recent tript to Fitger's Brewery in Duluth, so the timing was perfect.
This was not the easiest recipe to execute. And although Ray is raving about the results, I had to make a couple of modifications to the original to make it work, and I still think I might do some fixing the next time I make these. The "frosting" should be a bit more creamy, or maybe more like a glaze, and maybe a little less fleur de sel on top. But yes, there will be a next time, because they are lush, decadent, and a nice mix of sweet, bitter and salty. Below is the recipe as I made it this time.
16 ounces bittersweet chocolate, divided
2 1/4 sticks unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup flour
1 1/2 teaspoons salt, divided
Fleur de Sel, for topping
Preheat oven to 350. Spray a 9 inch square pan with nonstick. Bring the stout to a boil in a small pan, and reduce to 1/2 cup, then let cool to room temperature. Reserve 1/4 cup of the stout.
Place 12 ounces of the bittersweet chocolate in a bowl with 2 sticks of butter, cut into pieces. Place the bowl over a small pan of simmering water and stir until melted and smooth. In the meantime, whisk together eggs, sugar and vanilla in a large bowl (I just used my stand mixer). Gradually add the chocolate mixture, then add 1/4 cup of the reduced stout. Stir in flour and 1 1/4 teaspoons of salt. Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake brownies until the surface begins to crack, and a tester comes out with just a few crumbs attached. Let cool for at least 20 minutes before adding topping.
Put a medium bowl over a saucepan of simmering water, and combine the remaining chocolate, butter and stout. Stir just until melted, and then quickly spread across the top of the brownies. Top with a light sprinkling of Fleur de Sel. Let cool completely, then cut into squares with a warm, wet knife.