Ina Garten's Brownie Pudding Recipe Has A Boozy Secret Ingredient

For the chocolate lovers among us, there's perhaps no dessert that's better able to satisfy an urgent craving for the dark, rich, sweet stuff than brownies. Basically a bar cookie that packs in plenty of chocolate in its melted form, as cocoa powder, or both, brownies are a truly American dessert, with the first batch of the delectable goodies very likely baked up at the Palmer House Hotel in Chicago's Loop District back in 1893 (via Forbes). That early recipe creates a dark, dense brownie topped with an apricot glaze and chopped walnuts — and it is still available online.

Since then, brownies have gone on to evolve into seemingly endless variations, from classic fudgy brownies to cream cheese brownies to butterscotch brownies. But one style we hadn't heard of until being blessed with its presence by the Barefoot Contessa herself, Ina Garten, is brownie pudding, an indulgent chocolate dessert baked in a hot water bath that comes out cakey on the outside and pudding-like on the inside, according to a video Garten shared on YouTube. And in addition to its neat water bath trick, this brownie pudding features a boozy secret ingredient that brings some fruitiness to the party.

Framboise liqueur brings a whiff of raspberry to this brownie pudding

If there's anyone who knows a thing or two about the seductive nature of a great pan of brownies, it's Ina Garten. At the beginning of her YouTube video showing the preparation of her brownie pudding, Garten explains that when longtime husband Jeffrey went away to college at the start of their relationship, she would prepare big trays of brownies and ship them to him, making him "the most popular guy in the dorm when they arrived."

In celebration of the couple's 40-year wedding anniversary, Garten prepared a twist on those collegiate brownies on her show "Barefoot Contessa," stirring together a rich brownie batter that bakes in a water bath in order to produce a "pudding" that's "baked on the outside, and like pudding on the inside."

We don't expect anything less than luxury from the Contessa, so it comes as no surprise that this brownie pudding features a fancy ingredient: A tablespoon of framboise liqueur. According to Kitchn, the result is a "crispy-chewy," brittle-like top layer with a fudge-like middle.

Given that chocolate pairs so well with fruits such as bananas, strawberries, and citrus, this raspberry-scented addition is one we'll be trying in our own kitchen soon — whether stirred into pudding or in a straightforward pan of brownies.