Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Say (Cream) Cheese!

This post is for my friend Kerstin who wouldn't believe me that cream cheese brownies are really easy to make! This is one of the reasons I make cream cheese brownies so often. Everyone loves them, they are made in a jiffy and you can also prepare them in advance and keep them in the fridge for some days. I still can't decide whether I like them better fresh from the oven or cold from the fridge... they are divine anyway...

Here comes the recipe:
(Adapted from: Nigella Lawson - How to be a Domestic Goddess)

125g dark chocolate
125g unsalted butter
2 eggs
200g sugar
1 sachet (20g) vanilla sugar (Nigella uses vanilla extract)
75g plain flour
a pinch of salt
200g cold cream cheese (Philadelphia)

You need a brownie tin (about 23x23 cm, mine is 18x23 and it works fine, if you don't have a brownie tin, you could probably use a square gratin dish that has about that size). Line the brownie tin with parchment paper.

Preheat the oven to 180°C.

Melt the chocolate together with the butter in a small pan over low heat. Whilst this melts, beat the eggs with the sugar and the vanilla sugar in a bowl. In another bowl, mix flour and salt. When the chocolate has melted, take away from the heat and give it some time to cool a little. Then, add it to the egg and sugar-mixture. Finally, sift in the flour and mix until the batter is smooth.

Pour half the mixture into your tin and then slice the cream cheese into very thin slices and top the brownie mixture with these slices. Then pour the rest of your brownie batter over this. Use a spatula and make sure, every piece of cream cheese is covered with the mixture.

Put into the oven and bake for about 20 minutes. The top gets a little pale and crunchy but the inside is still sticky. When you take it out of the oven, let cool at least 10 minutes before cutting it into squares. Kept in an airtight container in the fridge, they stay moist for a few days. I ususally let the baked batter cool in the tin and cut it when it's completely cooled right before I serve the brownies. It's much easier to slice this way.

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