It’s always difficult at the end of a family get together or a catch up with friends at my house to decide if another gin & tonic is in order or to have a slice of chocolate brownie for dessert.

We’ve managed to combine them both, so you no longer have to choose. Using the delicate Brockmans Gin with its bright berry overtones and light citrus undertones which round of with the rich, velvety notes of our chocolate brownie perfectly. In our opinion at least.

There are a few things we need to cover first, no matter how delicious these brownies may be, sharing is always encouraged but never enforced. I mean I’ve been known to eat most of them in one sitting so I’m not one to judge. The Brockman’s gin works wonderful but if you’d be forgiven if you wanted to swap it for something like Edinburgh’s Raspberry Gin Liqueur instead for a sweeter style cake, we’d encourage this just as much.

Brockman’s is a quintessential independent British gin which was set up by pounding partners Neil Everitt and Bob Fowkes and 2 others. Their only aim was to create a gin so smooth you would want to drink it over ice and we recommend this serve highly, it’s a wonderful gin.

With the inclusion of blueberries, blackberries, lemon peel and liquorice in the distillation process you start to understand why we love this gin paired alongside chocolate of all kinds especially brownies.

Enough about my eating habits, Let’s get to why you’re really here, the brownie recipe.

LEMON & BLACKBERRY CHOCOLATE BROWNIES WITH BROCKMANS GIN

Serves 16, or 2 of me

INGREDIENTS

  • 125g (4¼ oz) butter
  • 200g (7 oz) caster sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 5 tablespoons good quality cocoa powder
  • 60g (2¼ oz) plain flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 70g fresh blackberries
  • For the Brockmans Gin Syrup
  • 200ml tonic water
  • 100g golden caster sugar
  • 70ml Brockmans gin
  • For the whipped cream topping
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 75g icing sugar, sifted
  • 200ml double cream
  • To Decorate 200g blackberries

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 180 C / Gas mark 4. Grease and flour a 20cm square baking tin.
  2. In a large saucepan, melt 125g butter. Remove from heat, and stir in sugar, eggs and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Beat in 5 tablespoons cocoa, 50g flour, salt and baking powder. Spread batter into prepared tin and poke in 50g of fresh blackberries
  3. Bake in preheated oven for 25 to 30 minutes. Do not overcook.
  4. Meanwhile make the syrup by placing the tonic water and caster sugar into a small pan. Heat gently until the sugar is dissolved and then increase the heat. Simmer for 7-10 minutes until the liquid has reduced to a thick syrup. Remove from the heat and strain the syrup through a fine sieve and leave to cool for 5 minutes. Drizzle over brownies while allowing to cool.
  5. Make the Vanilla Whipped cream, add 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, 75g icing sugar and 200ml double cream all to a mixing bowl and whip to stiff peaks.
  6. The cake can also be served without the whipped cream, we like it served warm with lemon or blackberry ice cream for that extra indulgent twist.