Spent espresso brownie recipe | Tom Hunt

Instead of throwing away your coffee grounds, use them in these brownies with a caffeine kick

Last November, I went to the Nandi hills west of the Rift Valley in Kenya, to visit a Fairtrade initiative called Growing Women In Coffee. The people there rarely drink their own coffee because of the cost, they told me, and so prefer tea. In the UK, meanwhile, we drink about 55m cups of the stuff a day, so it was eye-opening to see what goes into producing a regular cup of coffee in Kenya.

It’s rare we have time to stop and think about where our food comes from, and what hidden resources go into making it, which are in a sense consumed along with the ingredient itself. Coffee is a livelihood for millions of people around the world, and some farmers live off less than $2 a day.

Nothing beats an aromatic cup of coffee, so double your enjoyment, and minimise resources, by re-using the spent grounds – in marinades for vegetables, in brownies with a caffeine kick, or at the very least as an addition to the compost, where they’ll help add nitrogen back into the soil.

Spent espresso brownies

These toffee-like and fudge-y brownies are gooey beyond belief. Chocolate heaven with a caffeine kick.

Makes 12-16 brownies
2 organic apples, diced (if non-organic, peel them, too)
80g used coffee grounds
250g dark chocolate
, broken into pieces
400g rapadura or muscovado sugar
120g rye flour
150ml extra-virgin olive oil
, plus extra for greasing
50g cocoa powder

Heat the oven to 180C (160C fan)/gas 4. Grease a 20cm x 20cm baking tin with a little olive oil and line with parchment.

Put the diced apple and used coffee grounds in a small saucepan with two teaspoons of water and a pinch of salt. Put a lid on top and put on a medium heat. When you see steam, turn down the heat and cook, stirring occasionally, for five minutes, or until the apple is soft.

Blend to a puree, then return to the pan and, off the heat, add the chocolate and stir until melted.

Add the sugar, flour, oil and cocoa, and mix thoroughly. Pour into the greased tin and bake for 40-45 minutes, or until a crust forms on top but the centre is still moist. Leave to cool, then slice and serve.


Tom Hunt

The GuardianTramp

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