4 ounces unsweetened chocolate (half a box, if you're using Bakers or Hershey's squares)
1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 large eggs, room temperature (I never remember to take the eggs out beforehand, so I pop them, still in their shells and very carefully, into the microwave for 20 seconds)
1 1/2 cup sugar
1 cup flour
Preheat oven to 400 degrees
8 inch x 8 inch pan, buttered
Melt butter and chocolate together. Let cool slightly. Add to sugar, combine well. Add vanilla, stir, then add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition, until glossy. Stir in flour until mixture is smooth. Pour in prepared pan, making sure the batter gets into the corners. Bake at 400 degrees for 25-30 minutes.
The top will have puffed up, but as soon as you take it out of the oven it will sink back down and look crackly. The center will be slightly undercooked. This is the key to great, super-fudgy brownies. Use a small spatula to get the brownies out, scooping from the bottom slowly and carefully. They won't be perfect looking -- they'll be crumbly and hard to work with -- but they're definitely worth it. Share (or hide) as your conscience dictates.
If, like me, you have a four-year-old "helping," don't worry if a little melted chocolate and butter slosh out of the pan, or if some of the flour doesn't make it into the bowl. This is a hardy recipe and can withstand real-life circumstances.