Classic blondies have a fudge-like flavour, achieved here with the brown sugar and vanilla combination as well as the pieces of actual fudge stirred in
• 150g pecan nuts
• 140g vanilla fudge
• 3 eggs, at room temperature
• 170g unsalted butter, softened
• 75g caster sugar
• 150g soft light brown sugar
• 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
• 200g plain flour
• 1 teaspoon baking powder
• pinch salt
1 Heat the oven to 180°C. Line the baking tin with baking parchment.
2 Spread the pecan nuts out on a separate baking tray and toast in the oven for 10–15 minutes. Tip onto a plate to cool, then roughly chop the nuts.
3 Cut the fudge into very small dice. Break the eggs into a small bowl and, using a fork, beat lightly to break them up. Set aside.
4 Cream the butter and sugars together in a medium bowl until pale and fluffy, using an electric whisk.
5 Add the eggs in several additions, beating well after each addition, then stir in the vanilla, using a large metal spoon or a spatula.
6 Sift in the flour, baking powder and salt and add the chopped pecans and all but 1 tbsp of the fudge. Stir well to combine.
7 Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin and scatter the remaining fudge over the surface.
8 Bake in the middle of the oven for about 30 minutes until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean, or with a few moist crumbs still clinging to it.
9 Remove from the oven and leave to cool in the tin set on a wire rack. Remove when almost cooled and peel away the lining paper. Cut into squares while still warm.
Recipe courtesy of Leiths School of Food and Wine extracted from How to Cook Cakes. Photography by Peter Cassidy © Quadrille