It hasn't been a particularly good week at work. But there really isn't any point grumbling, so what do I do? Bakelah! Now, when you are morose, it won't do to just bake any cake. A butter cake is always a reliable cake but in times of trouble (dramatic, aren't I) you just gotta go the extra mile and bake something truly decadent.
Cheesecake Brownie. Now that sounded pretty sinful and just what I needed. Chocolate on its own is marvelous; as is cream cheese. When you cream them, whip them and then combine them .... that's when some real magic happens.
There are several versions of this treat and rest assured I am going to try at least two of them: David Lebowitz's one being one. Today though I opted for another which I bookmarked from joyofbaking.com, courtesy of Stephanie Jaworski.
Recipes are but guidelines and so I had to make some adjustments here and there -- different ovens kinda work differently and my brownie took a little longer to cook, I used semi sweet dark chocolate instead of unsweetened choc, etc .
Did the brownie uplift my spirits. It sure did. The tangy rich cream cheese matched the richness of the dark chocolate to perfection. Rich and buttery, it was an almost fudge (the brownie was dense as it had no rising agent: no baking soda or powder), almost cake, almost heaven chilled concoction.
115 gms unsalted butter, cut into pcs
110 gms semi sweet chocolate, broken
250 gms castor sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
70 gms all purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
225 gms cream cheese, at room temperature
65 grams white sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
Pre-heat oven to 160C. Line 6x6 inch square baking pan with aluminum foil (across the bottom and up two opposite sides). .
Melt choc and butter In a stainless steel bowl placed over a saucepan of simmering water. Remove and stir in sugar and vanilla extract. Add eggs, one at a time, and beat. Don't use a mixer as you want the cake to be dense and not incorporate too much air. Use a wooden spoon. Stir in the flour and salt and beat gently till batter is smooth and comes away from the sides of the pan. Set aside about 1/4 cup of the brownie batter. Pour the remainder of the batter into the lined pan.
Now take out your mixer and beat the cream cheese until smooth. Add sugar, vanilla and egg and mix till smooth. Spread the cream cheese filling over the brownie layer.
Take the 1/4 cup of brownie batter you reserved and with a spoon, swirl in the brownie mix (slowly, not too much at a time) into the cream cheese layer to get a kinda marble effect.
Bake in preheated oven for about 30 to 45 mins or until the brownies start to pull away from the sides of the pan.
Remove from oven and cool on a wire rack. Once cool, stick it in the fridge until it firms up (at least a couple of hours) before you cut it up. To remove brownie just lift the foil. Cut it up in squares and enjoy it piece by piece. Best eaten chilled.