Decadent Dark Chocolate and Cheesecake Swirled Brownies

Jan 5th

Who doesn’t love a dense, moist, decadently dark, fudgey brownie? My tagline on this blog says “there is more to life than brownies….but not much!”

I think that chocolate cures just about anything! And yes, there is a reason that I am known as browniegirl……..and here it is! My signature dish Cheesecake Swirled Brownies – deliciously moist, heavy and fudgey. Delightful on their own straight out of the fridge….but best at room temperature a day or so after they have been baked. By this stage the texture has settled into darkly deliciously fudge like and moist. We love them as a dessert with a dollop of creme fraiche to cut through the richness and some fresh berries in season. But equally delicious with a scoop of Vanilla ice cream! Enjoy them however you choose to…..but do make these!

Cheesecake Swirled Chocolate Brownies

DECADENT DARK CHOCOLATE CHEESECAKE SWIRLED BROWNIES

a decadently dark, rich, fudgey and dense chocolate brownie, swirled with cheesecake. What more could you want?

Original Recipe taken from “Cookies & Brownies” by Alice Medrich; Adapted by me!

Recipe type: dessert

Prep time: 15 mins

Cook time: 30 mins

Total time: 45 mins

Serves: 16 squares (depending how you cut them)

Ingredients

Brownie Layer:

125 grams Lurpak unsalted butter, cut into pieces

150 grams 80% dark chocolate, coarsely chopped

250 grams granulated white sugar

Fresh Vanilla Bean – split and seeds scraped out with the tip of a sharp knife

2,5ml pure vanilla extract

2 Jumbo Free Range eggs – at room temperature

90 grams Cake (or all purpose) Flour

2.5ml Salt

5ml Finely Grated Orange or Clementine Zest (optional)

Cream Cheese Layer:

250g Philadelphia Cream Cheese at room temperature

50ml Fresh Cream

70 grams granulated white sugar

2,5ml pure vanilla extract

1 Jumbo Free Range egg – at room temperature

Method

Preheat oven to 180 degrees C and place the rack in the center of the oven.

Melt a little regular butter then brush base and sides and line a 23 x 23 cm square baking pan with 2 sheets of baking paper across the bottom and up all four sides of the pan. The paper needs to come above the edges of the pan as you will use it to lift the baked brownies out of the pan. Brush the paper as well. Set aside.

In a large glass bowl melt the butter and chocolate in the microwave – you can do this over simmering water but I prefer the micro method. It only takes 1 -2 minute at about 50% power. Remove from microwave, stir well then stir in the sugar and vanilla extract and seeds and the zest if using.

Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well (with a wooden spoon) after each addition.

Stir in the sifted flour and salt and beat, with the wooden spoon, until the batter is smooth and glossy and comes away from the sides of the bowl (about one minute).

Remove 1/2 cup of the brownie batter, cover with cling film and set aside.

Pour the remainder of the brownie batter evenly into the prepared pan.

Then in the bowl of your mixer or processor (or with a hand mixer), beat the cream cheese & cream until smooth.

Add the sugar, vanilla and egg and blend until creamy and smooth.

Spread the cream cheese filling evenly over the brownie layer.

Spoon small dollops of the reserved brownie batter evenly on top of the cream cheese filling. Then with a table knife or wooden skewer, swirl the two batters a little bit (without mixing them together) to make a marbled effect.

Bake in the preheated oven for about 25 minutes or until the brownies just start to pull away from the sides of the pan and the edges are just beginning to turn golden.

Remove from oven and place pan on a wire rack to cool.

Once cool refrigerate the brownies (still in the pan covered with foil or cling film) for at least 2 hours but preferably overnight.

Once chilled, remove the brownies from the pan by lifting with the ends of the paper and transfer to a cutting board.

With a sharp hot dry knife, cut into 16 squares. It is a good idea to have a damp cloth handy to wipe your knife between cuts.

These brownies can be stored in the refrigerator for several days. Bring to room temperature before serving if you want the fudginess! Dust with icing sugar before serving.

Delicious with a scoop of ice cream or creme fraiche, mascarpone and fresh berries in season – or just alone straight from the container :)

browniegirl Notes

Don’t use a mixer when you make brownies….you don’t want to incorporate any air into the batter which will not result in fudgy dense brownies

Don’t use any leavening agent in your brownie mixture

Don’t over bake – You want your brownies to be a little bit moist in the middle when you take them out of the oven

Do use the best quality ingredients that you can afford to buy. These days you can get a very good comparable local cream cheese called Lancewood Superior (South Africa) which I have started using.

Pegs come in very handy in my kitchen. Use them to peg the paper firmly into place onto the edges of the pan. Once the batter is in the pan you can remove the pegs but if you use wooden pegs you can put the pan into the oven with the pegs attached

Enjoy!

browniegirl xx

This recipe was featured in Issue 13 of Crush! Online Magazine. If you are not already subscribed to this fabulous, classy food and wine magazine go on over and subscribe. It is free and is delivered monthly to your inbox!