Dear SOS: Had a lovely lunch last Friday at the Lucca Cafe in Irvine. The meal was wonderful. The payoff was their brownie. It was so good that several of us ordered an extra one to take home. It almost seemed as if the outside were a chocolate meringue and the inside a very moist, soft chocolate. If you could secure the recipe, we would be forever grateful!
Dear Carole: With a delicate, crisp crust enveloping a wonderfully ooey-gooey filling, this amazingly rich brownie takes perfection and coats it in chocolate — and then drizzles over even more chocolate just for good measure. Lucca was happy to share its recipe for brownies, which we've adapted below. Try to eat just one.
Lucca Cafe's brownies
Our recipes, your kitchen: If you try this or any other recipe from the L.A. Times Test Kitchen, we would like to know about it so we can showcase it on our food blog and occasionally in print. Upload pictures of the finished dish here.
Total time: 1½ hours, plus cooling and chilling times
Servings: 18 brownies
Note: Adapted from Lucca Cafe in Irvine. Lucca uses Elite brand instant coffee.
1/2 pound bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1/2 pound salted butter
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoons almond extract
1 1/2 tablespoons instant coffee
3 3/4 cups sugar