Oh dear, I bought a block of Cauldron firm tofu ages ago, it sat in my fridge for yonks and it was only the night before I was due to go to my Mum's for a week that I realised the Use By date would come up while I was away. Being such a skinflint, I really didn't want to throw away an unopened packet and I'd already had my dinner, so I really wasn't sure what to do with it.
I had a quick search online and found a recipe for Low-Fat Brownies which had originally come from RecipeZaar. I had all the ingredients to hand, except that I'd searched for "firm tofu" and the recipe did indeed call for that, but in brackets it had "silken lite". Oh well, I decided to give it a go anyway.
Aside from using regular firm tofu instead of film silken tofu, I also used regular plain flour rather than wholewheat (the only wholewheat flour I can ever find in Tesco is wholemeal bread flour), cut out the almond extract and added a little extra oil to help with the blending (to be honest, I thought that 1 tsp oil in the original recipe must have been a typo). Upon tasting the mixture I found it was nowhere near sweet enough, so I bumped the sugar up a lot.
To be honest with you, I'd be in no rush to make this recipe again. Although it cooked up just fine and was nice and moist, the chocolate flavour was nowhere near as pronounced as it needed to be and despite the increased sugar, it still wasn't sweet enough. Bearing this in mind, if you give it a go you might want to swap a little of the flour for extra cocoa - say 1/8 to 1/4 cup. I baked my brownies for 25 minutes because when I inserted a skewer at the 20-mins mark they appeared to be underdone. However, at the 25-mins mark they were definitely of the more cakey-brownie consistency, so you'd be wise to err on the side of caution and not leave them in a minute longer than necessary.
1 1/3 cup plain flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup applesauce
1 tbs sunflower oil
1 1/8 cup caster sugar (original recipe called for only 3/4 cup)
12oz firm tofu (eg Cauldron, original recipe called for firm silken tofu)
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/3 cup cocoa (needs more in my opinion - swap out some of the flour for extra cocoa)
1. Preheat the oven to 175C/350F/Gas Mark 4 and line a 7" or 8" square tin with baking paper. Make life easier for yourself by using one long strip to fit the base and overlap two sides so you have a "handle" to lift the brownies out with.
2. Combine the flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt in a bowl.
3. Use a blender or food processor to blitz the applesauce, oil, sugar, tofu, vanilla and cocoa until smooth.
4. Pour the blended ingredients into the flour mixture and stir until combined.
5. Pour into the prepared tin, smooth the top and bake for 20-25 mins.
Tip: I used my Bullet blender to combine the tofu etc but it wasn't nearly big enough and I had to do everything in batches, then stir it all together and this got quite tedious and messy. You'll need to use a decent-size blender or food processor (or have more patience than me).
Makes: 16 squares