Thursday, February 3, 2011

A Sweet Treat for my Sweetie

The sun came out today! This left me smiling from ear to ear all day.

Ironically, though the sun was shining strong, we had Snow Day #3 of the week. (I guess the roads were really icy this morning. They actually were pretty bad when I headed to the gym around 10am.) Fingers crossed we'll be back at school tomorrow, because now we're at the point where we will be adding days to our school year in June!

Anyways, I've pretty much exhausted myself of ways to entertain myself outside the baking world. I've watched TV, read blogs, read books, organized closets, dusted, changed sheets, and even cleaned the bathroom. I haven't touched a lick of schoolwork, but that's beside the point. I finally broke down and got busy in the kitchen today, preparing a special treat for my Business Man.

I discovered a recipe for Red Velvet Cheesecake Brownies while browsing the interwebs this morning. Now, most recipes that I find on the internet, I usually file away on my bookmarks bar, and get to them eventually. But not this one, it had to be made today. Especially with Valentine's Day coming around the corner!

I got right to it, after running to Ray's to pick up some red food coloring.  I discovered once I got home that I already had an open bottle. (Leftover from these.) Whoops. Looks like some more red velvety things might be in my future. And note to self: check your cupboards before you run out to buy ingredients.

The goods.

To make the brownie batter, start out by melting 2-oz. of bittersweet chocolate with 1/2 cup butter. I use the best, Ghirardelli. (Has anyone had their brownie mix? The best boxed brownies you will ever eat. Just so ya know.)

Melty chocolate. Though I wouldn't taste-test this just yet, because there is no sugar added. Just resist a few more minutes!

While the butter is melting, whisk together the sugar, eggs, vanilla, and red food coloring. It's REEEEEEEED! (No worries, it will mellow out once the chocolate and flour are added.)

Sugar, eggs, vanilla, and red food coloring.

After the chocolate has cooled a bit, add that to the whisked mixture, and whisk until smooth. 

Adding the chocolate.

Then, stir in the flour and salt, and fold in the chocolate chips. Don't stir it too much at this point! Just until combined. (Or else it'll get tough.)

Brownie batter!

Now it's time for the cheesecake filling. Beat together the cream cheese, some more sugar, an egg, and a little vanilla. And make sure you use your pink hand mixer, since these are for Valentine's Day and all.

Once that's ready, you're ready to assemble the pan. Pour the brownie batter into the pan. Then, spoon the cream cheese mixture in 6-8 spots over the batter.

Now is the fun part. Swirl the batter! You can use a knife or spatula, just make sure you don't get too swirl-happy because then it'll look like a kids' finger-painting picture. But if you're into that, go for it!


Bake in the oven at 350*F for 40-45 minutes until set and a knife comes out clean. Then try to resist and let them cool as long as possible so that you can remove them from the pan in an organized fashion. 

I will confess... I made these for my Business Man, but I couldn't avoid taste-testing them before he got home. They were calling to me! (I guess licking the batter spoons and bowls wasn't enough.)

The verdict? I absolutely loved them! Usually it's hit-or-miss for me with homemade brownies. I have a hard time finding recipes that are as fudgy as a box mix. They always turn out too cakey! But these were excellent. 

The brownie base is fudgy, and the cheesecake adds a decadent touch. Combined together, they produce one show-stopper dessert! I can just picture these as a special Valentine's Day dessert, plated with some hot fudge sauce and whipped cream. Mmmm... 

(Maybe my Business Man will make these for me on Valentine's Day, as I have parent-teacher conferences until 8pm. Or maybe he'll whip out his mom's hot fudge pudding cake. That stuff is good. Perhaps it deserves its own blog post?)

So, go make these for your lover! Or, do an act of kindness for yourself and make them just for you!


ambernpayne said...

I haven't had the desire to eat anything in around 12 hours, and due to the nasty sickness lost almost 6 lbs during that time frame, but these, my friend, they're still calling me. I hope one is there to greet me tomorrow night! :) If not, I shall attempt to make them myself!

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