Rosewater and cardamom brownies


I do love brownies. I may not be the biggest super fan of chocolate, but I will probably always say ‘yes’ to a good brownie. Especially the gooey-inside // flaky-outside variety. How could you say no to that?

Then there’s the addition of rosewater chocolate frosting (optional, but tasty) based on a recipe from the Kitchn, and chopped pistachios and rose petals for decoration (again, optional, but also tasty) which essentially makes these brownies into a rather fancy dessert .


This brownie recipe comes from an adaptation of Iambaker’s recipe that mimics that of a boxed brownie mix (you can find the recipe here). It uses cocoa powder, rather than chocolate, but that doesn’t mean dry brownies. In fact, this is probably where oven temperatures and how long you bake the brownies have more impact on making dry brownies than the cocoa powder. Therefore, in this instance, it’s probably better (and tastier!) to be on the side of under-baking your brownies than over-baking brownies, because dry brownies are also sad brownies. Not even frosting can totally make up for sad brownies.

Makes 9 brownies. 

225g of white sugar
40g of unsweetened cocoa powder
60g of plain flour
4 cardamom pods, casings removed and contents ground
1/4 tsp of salt
1/4 tsp of baking powder
115g of unsalted butter, melted and then cooled
2 eggs
2 tsp of rose water (less if you really aren’t a fan of rosewater)

For the chocolate frosting (makes enough for two brownie batches, so half if you’re just making one batch as above), and decorations (if using):

55g of unsalted butter
3 tbsp of unsweetened cocoa powder
60ml of whole milk
250g of icing sugar (I started with something more like 200g)
1 tsp of rose water (sub for vanilla extract if you prefer)
Pistachios and rosewater to decorate (if using)

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C, and line a greased 8-inch square pan with baking paper for easier removal from the pan later. Sift together the sugar, cocoa powder, plain flour, ground cardamom, salt and baking powder into a bowl.

In another medium bowl, beat the two eggs with the rosewater. Add in the dry ingredients from the other bowl and gently stir together. Pour in the melted butter, and mix it together until just incorporated. Spread the batter into the prepared pan, and bake for about 20-22 minutes. The top should be shiny and slightly crackly.

Remove the brownies from the oven, and try to let them cool as long as you can stand, because they will continue to cook, as well as continue to develop their flavour.

If you’re making the chocolate frosting, melt the butter in a pan, before whisking in the cocoa powder. Add the milk and the rosewater (or vanilla) until frothy. Make sure the cocoa powder has dissolved. Either using a stand mixer or a hand mixer, work the icing sugar into the cocoa-butter mixture a little at a time, whisking each time until fully incorporated. Keep adding the icing sugar until it reaches your desired consistency (the 250g should make a thick but spreadable frosting; I went for a bit less to have mine be runnier). Spread the frosting over the fully cooled brownies (pop them in the fridge for a bit of faster cooling if you’re impatient), and top with chopped pistachios and rose petals if you desire, and enjoy.

8 thoughts on “Rosewater and cardamom brownies

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