Admittedly, I was in a slightly drug-induced daze whilst baking this batch of delectable brownies, for you see, I am nursing an extremely sore lower back. (NOTE: The brownies contain NO traces of narcotics). Anyway, my friends seem to be interested in how I managed to cause so much damage to myself - they ask with concern, with a cheeky gleam in their eyes and a slightly naughty inflexion in their voice. I suppose they expect me to say I did it attempting some bizzare sexual position only very flexible and nubile centrefold models should attempt and I suppose that sounds far more juicy and exciting than saying I put my back out trying to lift a toolbox from the ground. *sigh*
Anyway, back to the brownies. These are Japanese inspired (as were my previous entry to Myriam's "brownie babe of the month" event) with the inclusion of sinus-clearing wasabi paste and tummy-settling grated ginger root. I must confess the idea came from a Recchiuti pamphlet I found whilst unpacking some boxes (which incidentally led to my sore back) and I did find the pairing of wasabi and chocolate rather peculiar but let's face it, every fellow seem to have some pretty outrageous chocolate pairing (with garlic, olives and blue cheese to name a few) these days which work, I suppose.
Unlike many of my kitchen-related undertakings, this one in particular took much careful planning and consideration simply because I was limited in my movement and I really shouldn't have been operating any machinery (hey, that's what the fine print on the box of tablets state) thus my initial plan of making a wasabi truffle cake was scrapped or more accurately, filed under "future projects" for the time being as I settled to make these brownies following my favourite brownie recipe supplemented with wasabi paste and grated ginger root.
Surprisingly, the wasabi's tear-inducing property was greatly diminished in the baked product and paired with the ginger created a complex warm and earthy flavour. Of course, with the addition of a handful of leftover marshmallows and chocolate chunks, the texture became irresistibly moist, chewy and suspiciously... chocolatey. This is definately a brownie you would make to impress and surprise your grown-up friends with a more developed and sophisticated palate (compared to a child... though this is sometimes arguable). It is such a special coupling of flavours; balanced, rounded and utterly delicious!