I’ve been baking Evelyn Raab’s hazelnut truffle squares for years. The gooey, gluten-free brownies, which have finely ground hazelnuts in place of all-purpose flour, are perfect as is, but over time I’ve tried mixing things up, swapping neutral oils for butter and pecans for hazelnuts. This is my favorite variation yet. The combination of toasted pecans, dark chocolate, vanilla, and olive oil produces a complex, sweet flavor reminiscent of dates or maple syrup.
Olive Oil and Pecan Brownies
6 tablespoons olive oil
2 oz high-quality dark chocolate
1 cup granulated sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups toasted pecans, finely ground
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Grease or line an 8-inch square baking pan with parchment paper.
- In a medium saucepan, combine olive oil and dark chocolate. Stir over low heat until chocolate melts. Remove from heat.
- Add sugar, eggs, and vanilla, and mix until smooth. Stir in finely ground pecans, and scrape batter into prepared baking pan with a rubber spatula or spoon.
- Bake for 40-45 minutes, until a toothpick or fork inserted into the middle of the brownies comes out almost clean. Be careful not to over bake these; they will harden a bit as they cool in the pan.
- When fully cool, remove from pan and cut into squares. Store leftovers at room temperature in an airtight container.
Yields around 36 very small squares and 18 larger ones.