I have two excellent brownie recipes now (one US and this UK one) and I have to say, I'll never go back to using a pre-made mix. It's so easy to make them from scratch and they're soooo much better!
Here is the recipe for Nigel Slater's Very Good Brownies:
300g golden caster sugar
250g butter, slightly softened
250g chocolate (70% cocoa solids)
3 large* eggs + 1 extra egg yolk
60g finest quality cocoa powder
1/2 tsp baking powder
You'll want to use a square baking tin, about 23cm x 23cm. I used my square roasting dish.
Preheat the oven to 180°C/Gas Mark 4/350°F. Line the bottom of the tin with baking parchment (or spray it with non-stick cooking spray, which is what I did). Break up the chocolate and set 50g aside. You're going to melt 200g and the 50g you have set aside should be broken up into gravel-sized pieces. Melt the chocolate in a heat-safe bowl that is suspended over a pot of boiling water. The bowl should not touch the water.
At the same time that the chocolate is melting...in a mixing bowl, combine sugar and butter and beat for several minute until white and fluffy. Count yourself lucky if you have a stand up mixer. This will cause your hand to cramp if you're using a hand mixer. Keep an eye on your melting chocolate and remove it from the heat as soon as it's completely melted.
Break the eggs into a small bowl and lightly beat them. Sift together the cocoa, flour, baking powder and a pinch of salt. While the mixer is running, slowly incorporate the eggs into the butter/sugar mixture. Increase the speed of the mixture after each addition of the egg (I forgot to do this and mine turned out fine). Once this is incorporated, take the bowl off the mixer (or put your hand mixer down and stretch out the cramps in your hand) and mix in the melted and chopped chocolate. Lastly, fold in the flour/cocoa mixture, trying to keep the air in the mixture.
Pour the mixture into the prepared cake tin and smooth over the top. Bake for 30 minutes. The cake will rise and may look more done around the edges than it does in the middle. Stick a fork in the middle and it should come out sticky, but not with any of the mixture on it. If it's not done enough, put it back in the oven for 3 minutes. The brownies will solidify a bit as they cool, so don't worry if they look a little wet. Allow them to cool before serving.
Notice I have no Weight Watcher's points for these. They would be off the charts!
*'Large eggs' in the UK/Ireland are the same size as 'extra large' eggs in the US. Any time I use a US recipe that calls for 'large eggs' or even just 'eggs' I always use the 'medium eggs' here in Ireland. Believe it or not, this actually makes a difference in how your baked goods turn out!