I realised earlier that I’ve only done one recipe post in the whole of 2016, and hey, that’s just not on. I’ve talked about adventuring, looked back at what 2015 had to offer when it came to eating, baking and music, but I’ve only done one measly recipe post. I mean it was a pretty great recipe, and you should go and check it out if you haven’t already, but to say I’ve baked a few bits I should have blogged more. In my own defense I had no internet, and then I moved house. So both of those things combined have made for a turbulent and not necessarily productive few weeks. I’ve packed my life into boxes again, unpacked a chunk of it, done some DIY, unpacked more of it, and in amongst that still been baking. The kitchen stuff was of course first priority and not just for me. My new housemate has a taste for cake and I’m pretty sure it’s the main reason he’s let me move into his spare room.
Just along the road from my new place is the world’s fanciest Spar. I’ve probably mentioned it before in a previous blog post from other stints in Walthamstow, but ah well. Those who frequent the area will know of the place. Others have probably been told about it in hushed voices in conversations like:
Anyway, this particular spar stocks a bunch bakes sourced from a mixture of independent bakeries and the restaurant Eat 17 which owns the Spar itself. One of the items stocked is a Cheesecake Brownie and rather than just picking one up to buy I wanted to make some myself. Last year I debuted one of my oh so fancy diagrams in my post for Pizza Pie Mac N Cheese and at a request from Cate at Cate in the kitchen I’m going to start doing them more regularly. So here’s the make up of a Blackberry Cheesecake Brownie:
They take a bit longer than my usual brownies to bake, and you really have to make sure they’re chilled and set before cutting them up to serve, but the wait is 100% worthwhile. They even managed to make it into my workmate and pal Being Erica’s round up of 10 happy things for the week, and she had a pretty busy week, so they must be good. They use my usual brownie mixture with the chocolate chips taken out and the cheesecake batter spread on top.
- **For the Brownies**
- 250g unsalted butter
- 250g best dark chocolate
- 115g plain flour
- 53g cocoa powder
- 4 large eggs
- 370g golden caster sugar
- **For the Syrup**
- 340g fresh or frozen blackberries
- 100g granulated white sugar
- 120ml water
- **For the Cheesecake**
- 450g cream cheese, softened
- 120g yogurt
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- 100g sugar
- ½ tsp salt
- Start with the blackberry syrup. Over a medium-high heat in a small saucepan, combine all the ingredients for the syrup and cook for 8-10 minutes. Stir with a spoon every now and then to help it break down. Once this is done strain through a fine sieve into a bowl and set aside to cool.
- Then move on to the brownies: Melt together the butter and dark chocolate, by placing a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of hot water. Making sure that the water doesn’t touch the bottom of the bowl. Stir the mixture together as it starts to melt, over a low heat. (You can do this stage in the microwave, but I don’t own one). Set the mixture aside to cool to room temperature.
- While it is cooling, preheat the oven to 180°C (160°C fan assisted) and grease/line your tin.
- Over a medium sized bowl, sieve the flour and cocoa powder in together.
- Break the eggs and caster sugar into the bowl of your electric mixer and whisk on high speed until it looks thick and creamy. This can take anywhere between 3 and 8 minutes. When you take out the paddle, as it dribbles onto the surface and leaves a trail for a second or two then it’s perfect.
- Fold the chocolate mixture into the egg mixture. Slowly folding it until it’s completely incorporated. You want them mixed without knocking out all the air you just added in to the mixture with the whisking.
- Sift the flour mix into the egg/chocolate mix and mix until it’s completely combined. Again, being careful not to knock the air out. Followed by the chocolate chips.
- Pour into the prepared tin and set aside while you prepare the cheesecake layer.
- Combine all of the cheesecake ingredients in the bowl of your stand mixer and, with a whisk attachment, beat for 2-3 minutes on a medium to high setting.
- Pour over the brownie mixture, making sure it's spread well over the top. Dribble the syrup over the top and use a knife or toothpick to create swirl patterns.
- Place in the center of the pre-heated oven and bake for 45-55 minutes, until the whole mixture has set and isn't wobbly from a light shake.
- Allow to cool completely before transferring to a fridge. Divide the chilled brownies and serve.