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a stack of beetroot brownies on a pretty white plate with pointy cornersHello there! It’s been a while… again. But I have a good excuse! We’ve moved house. Yup, we now live in an area outside the city on the coast – a 5 minute walk from the beach to be exact. For Athenians this is considered “a village”! Oh but it’s so lovely. See? a little palm tree on a lawn next to a sandy beach The move was an experience. I’ve moved house several times in my life, 9 to be exact – not counting my years at University in England and not counting the time when I was little and we started moving to a flat up the street only to find the fridge didn’t fit through the kitchen doorway. My mum just took everything back to the old flat that same day! I must say, this time was very easy. We hired professionals to do all the work; packing, dismantling, transporting, the works. The hardest part for us was trying to stay out of their way. Check out their fantastically clever wardrobe box! a cardboard box with a rack for hanging clothesAfter all 9,000 boxes were brought to the new house however, that’s when the tricky part for us started. Two weeks later and I’ve managed to get rid of all but four of them. Unfortunately, one of these contains my tupperware; it doesn’t fit in the kitchen, and I can’t live without it. So I have several trips to IKEA planned in a quest to find the right storage contraption. Any excuse to go get a hotdog!

A few days after the move, I got a message from a Greek food blogger friend (Wonderfoodland) inviting me to a picnic she and two other bloggers (Funky Cook and Sabor by Conna) were organizing for Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution Day. FRD is an initiative to help raise awareness about eating healthy meals made from scratch. I had to choose from a list of fresh ingredients and make something to take with me. Luckily beetroot was on the list, so I got to try something I’ve been meaning to for a while now. Beetroot brownies! I used a recipe I found on Milk & Honey, which is very easy and requires a minimum of cooking utensils (crucial for me at the time). The only thing I did differently to the original recipe was leave it to bake for longer, as I wanted a more “cakey” brownie rather than a very fudgy one (easier to eat while sitting on a blanket in a park!). What a great day it was! It was so cool to meet fellow bloggers who are based here in Greece, I really hope to see more of them in the future. As with all foodies, they are a supportive and welcoming bunch, always ready with a good word!

picnic shots of brownies, savoury tart, pasta salad and cherry pie

Photos by Wonderfoodland

Beetroot Brownies for Jamie’s Food Revolution Day Picnic

Ingredients

250g unsalted butter
250g dark chocolate
250g cooked beetroot (I use the vacuum packed type – make sure it’s not preserved in vinegar!)
3 eggs
250g white sugar
1/8 tsp salt
150g self-raising flour

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 180C (or 160C on fan mode). Grease a baking tin and line it with grease proof paper, making sure the paper overlaps the long sides (creating a handle to pull out the brownies when cooked). My tin is 18×24.5cm (7×9.5”).
  2. Place the butter and chocolate in a bowl and melt in the microwave (in 30 second blasts, mixing after each blast). Alternatively, melt in a small saucepan over low heat, keeping a constant eye on it so it doesn’t burn. Let cool slightly.
  3. Cut the beetroot into pieces and whiz in a food processor until smooth. Set aside.
  4. In a large bowl beat the eggs and sugar till well combined and lighter in colour.
  5. Add the chocolate mixture to the eggs slowly, while mixing constantly. Be careful if your chocolate is still very hot, you don’t want to cook the eggs!
  6. Sift the flour and salt over the bowl and fold it in carefully.
  7. When almost no flour is visible, fold in the beetroot until just incorporated. Don’t overmix. The batter will be quite runny.
  8. Pour the batter into the tin and bake for 35-40 minutes if you want fudgy brownies, or about 50 minutes for cakey brownies. After 50 minutes my toothpick came out dry from some spots, slightly moist from others.
  9. Let the brownies cool in the tin for 10 minutes or so, then lift out using the paper “handles” and place on a wire rack. Mine were gorgeously moist (not gooey), even with the extra baking time.

Instead of other beetroot recipes, I am listing a few of the blogs that participated in the picnic. There were several more but I didn’t get a chance to chat with them. Take a moment to visit these guys; they are doing a fantastic job!
Wonderfoodland (picnic organiser) – posts in both English and Greek (her savoury tart with feta, tomatoes, onion and olives is pictured above – recipe not online yet)
Sabor by Conna (picnic organiser) – posts in both English and Greek
Funky Cook (picnic organiser) – posts in Greek
Elena’s Cooking (picnic attendee) – posts in English (Pasta Salad with Zucchini pictured above)
Donkey & The Carrot (picnic attendee) – posts in both English and Greek (Cherry Pie pictured above)
Food Daily (picnic attendee) – posts in Greek

For more photos of yummy picnic food, or in case you really want to “Like” it, head over to the Food Revolution Day Athens page!

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