Kitchen MacGyver: Butter-And-Oil-Free Brownie Bites

The Dodge Rock ‘n’ Roll San Diego Marathon and Half-Marathon took place yesterday and I was lucky enough to get invited to a post-race party thrown by four-time national coach of the year and former UCLA track and cross-country coach Bob Larsen. Half-marathon champion Meb Keflezighi and his family, including wife, Yordonas, who finished her first half-marathon that day, attended. My husband brought his friends from New York City, Worku Beyi and Buzunesh Deba, who was on world-record pace in the earlier stages of the marathon. Even after slowing in the latter stages, she still managed to run an event record, the fastest marathon ever run in California, and an over three-minute personal best. As we chatted, ate dinner and enjoyed spectacular views of Mission Bay, we celebrated the incredible achievements of the day and events like these that support the sport and unite friends.

Normally, I would bring bread, salad or pasta salad to a party with elite runners, but I went out on a limb and made two-bite brownies without butter or oil. While everything is fine in moderation in my book, I know that many professional runners tend to be very careful about their diets. But, I was pleasantly surprised to see that most of the brownies were gone by the time we left.

Butter-and-oil-free Brownie Bites  

1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate, melted and cooled slightly

3 eggs, separated

1/3 cup sugar

1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons ground almonds

1 teaspoon freshly ground coffee

1/4 cup walnuts, optional

chocolate chips, for tops of brownies

Preheat over to 350 degrees F. Spray two mini muffin tins with cooking spray and set aside.

Whisk egg yolks and sugar with a hand-held (or upright) mixer until pale and creamy. Stir in cooled melted chocolate, ground almonds, coffee and walnuts (if using).

Whisk egg whites to stiff peaks. Fold two-thirds of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture, taking special care not to deflate the egg whites too much. Fold the rest of the egg whites into the mixture. Fill the mini muffin cups until the chocolate mix is just below the top of each rim on the tray. Top each cup with four chocolate chips. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and cool before popping each brownie out (loosed the edges with a knife for easier removal). Makes 18-20 brownie bites.

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