Say it with me: Brouffle. Its inventor, Joseph “Joe” De Roxas, says, “It’s pronounced as ‘brou-’ (ou sounds like hot), and ‘-ffle’ (sounds like fall).” I’m still confused so I call it brouffle, rhymes with “muffle.”
A dessert hybrid consisting of a brownie and a truffle, or if you prefer, a brownie with a truffle-like texture, this is one madly moist brownie. A cherished sweet from childhood that later on provided relief to Joe from the rigors of writing a thesis for graduate school, the brouffle came about by accident. It was brought to life by a recipe encountered in an old cookbook and that Joe tweaked to “…make it perfect and truffle-like.” When it comes to this bar cookie, he’s got some staunch opinions about them. “Most of the brownies in Manila are crusty on the outside and cakey on the inside, [which I’m not a fan of.] In terms of texture, my brouffle is crusty and chewy on the outside, and soft and creamy on the inside, like a chocolate truffle. I want my brouffle to be the best brownie [you’ve] eaten, the most chocolaty, the most delicious of all brownies. I want my brownie to be soft, chewy, rich, dense and fudgy all in one. I want to eat a brownie like I’m eating a chocolate bar.”
On that last point, Joe is dead-on. The base for his brouffles is a 75% dark chocolate from Malaysia, but sometimes he’ll use Callebaut or Felchlin. From there, four brouffle variants are formed.
The Classic Brouffle (above) is a full-on, take-no-prisoners charge of chocolate, available in different cacao percentages, 53.8% or 75%. I prefer these because when it comes to brownies – or in this case, brouffles – I’d rather not have any nutty interruptions.
The Rocher Brouffle (above) hides a whole hazelnut in its heady depths.
There is also the White Mocha (coffee and chocolate), and the Black Forest Brouffle, a shimmy between sultanas and almonds but I don’t try this. I’m allergic to anything labeled black forest, and if you read my book, you already know why. Aside from the nut and/or fruit inclusions I feel that there is no significant taste difference among the variants. Each brouffle is tastefully wrapped in a foil package, color coded to distinguish its flavor. Be careful when opening the package as sudden rips will send a shower of cocoa powder.
Joe calls his brouffle baking business Brownbaker, a nod to Filipinos and chocolate. A swarthy sweet mainlining a direct hit of chocolate, its flavor is big and bold. Sunken centers illustrate a molten mass lurking beneath an overlay of fudge and cocoa powder; it’s so soft that the sweet threatens to fall apart in my hand. Joe recommends that the brouffles be eaten cold, “to achieve that truffle-like, melt-in-your mouth texture,” but I can’t agree because cold mutes flavors. I prefer eating them at room temperature. Either way, it’s subjective so taste as you please. Then you can decide whether the brouffle is more of a brownie. Or a truffle.
Brouffles by Brownbaker
Prices start at P325/9 squares.
Joseph “Joe” De Roxas
Call/Text/Viber:0905. 356 8640 / 0916. 469 6119
On Facebook: brownbakerph
On Instagram: brownbaker
2 days’ lead time. Pick-up points : Ortigas area / Megamall and at Capitol Commons (Saturday and Sunday), and Greenhills area (Sunday). Special arrangements are available for other areas.