Chocolate Brownies by Jane Asher – Bake for Lumos!

Chocolate Brownies by Jane Asher – Recipe kindly donated for the Light a Birthday Candle for Lumos! a charity campaign founded by Harry Potter author JK Rowling.


100g/ 4 oz/ 8 tbsp butter
75 g/ 3 oz/ 2/3 cup plain flour
40 g/ 1 oz/ 1/3 cup cocoa powder
2 medium-sized eggs, lightly beaten
225 g/ 8 oz/ 1 cup caster sugar
Finely grated zest of 1 orange


1. Pre-heat the oven to 180 C/ 350 F/ gas mark 4
2. Melt the butter in a small pan and leave it until lukewarm
3. Sift together the flour and cocoa powder
4. Beat the eggs and sugar together until light and fluffy. Fold in the flour, cocoa, melted butter and orange zest until evenly mixed
5. Turn the mixture into a greased 18 cm/ 7 in square tin and spread it smoothly
6. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes until springy to the touch
7. Leave to cool in the tin
8. Once cold turn out on to a wire rack and ice with Chocolate Fudge Icing, if desired.

It has also been claimed that the Germans invented birthday cakes, and celebrated birthdays with a cake called “Geburtstagorten”. The Germans were known to have been skilled candlemakers and may have put small candles on their cakes, possibly for religious reasons.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR JANE ASHER is an actress who is also known as a cake decorator and a cake shop proprietor. She has written three best-selling novels and published more than a dozen lifestyle, costuming, and cake decorating books. Jane runs a company making party cakes and sugar crafts for special occasions.


By taking part in Light a Birthday Candle for Lumos, you can help us change the lives of thousands of vulnerable children by raising vital funds to support our work in ending the systematic institutionalisation of children across Central and Eastern Europe.

Over a million children and young people live in large residential institutions across Central and Eastern Europe. Separated from their families and isolated from their community, they receive little human or emotional contact.

Year after year, the staff who look after them cannot provide the individual attention they need so desperately, meaning they don’t have the educational or social activities we take for granted, from attending school to marking each passing year by celebrating their birthday.

While some of these children will never know their actual date of birth, many institutions choose 1 June, International Children’s Day, as the day when all children have their ‘birthday’, further eroding their sense of individuality.

Light a Birthday Candle for Lumos aims to celebrate International Children’s Day and encourage people to host cake and candle themed fundraising events on and around 1 June 2011, in honour of the thousands of children unable to have their own birthday parties.


– make a donation: by simply clicking here to light a candle now

– bake and take: raise money in your workplace by creating some sweet treats for colleagues

– tea and cake: host a fund-raising afternoon tea for friends and family

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