These are so smooth they melt in your mouth like a luxurious chocolate truffle, with a flavor and texture burst from the orange zest, cranberries and almonds.
1-1 lb box Collection Etienne 61% Semisweet Chocolate Wafers
¼ cup (½ stick) unsalted butter
¼ cup water
4 large eggs, room temperature
1⅓ cups sugar
½ teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon finely grated orange zest (from ½ medium orange)
1 cup unsifted all-purpose flour
½ cup dried, sweetened cranberries
½ cup diced, toasted almonds
Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 325ºF. Lightly butter the bottom and sides of a 9x13x2-inch pan.
Heat chocolate, butter and water in the top of a double boiler over low heat, stirring until melted and smooth (or in a microwave, in a large microwave safe bowl at medium power for 1-2 minutes, stirring well after 1 minute, then at 30 second intervals until smooth and all of the chocolate is melted). Remove from heat and set aside.
In large bowl of electric mixer, beat eggs, sugar, salt, vanilla and orange zest on high speed until pale and thick, about 2-3 minutes. Blend in melted chocolate on low speed, stopping to scrape bottom and sides as needed. Add flour just until combined, then cranberries and almonds.
Spread the batter into the prepared pan and bake 35-40 minutes or until a crust forms on top and the edges are set. The center will still test moist. Do not overbake as the chocolate will solidify as it cools. Place pan on a rack and cool for 2-3 hours or overnight before cutting into squares.