We were walking through our local market one day and scoping out all of the treats along the way. We saw a cheesecake and I thought, mmmm I haven't made one of those in a while. Then I saw some brownies and thought mmmm brownies. Then it was decided. A chocolate brownie based cheesecake was well in order!
And so it was made. Well many times in fact over the last month in different guises. A cake as a cheesecake would be expected (20" round cake tin), then it was a tray bake for our MacMillan Coffee Morning fundraiser sale, then my niece's 7th birthday afternoon tea girlie treats, and then the leftovers
morphed into yet another tray bake (this time with Oreos instead of brownies as a base).
So what I'm saying is - if you need something tailored for special treat - this is the one to make! And it is so simples!
Here is a guide to make a tray bake (and then I will give tips at the end for other versions)
160g golden caster sugar (can use white however the golden makes it more caramelly)
210g light brown sugar
4 heaping tablespoons cocoa
200g plain flour
4 large eggs
200g unsalted butter (cut into cubes)
100g milk chocolate
200g dark chocolate (70%+ solids)
1tsp vanilla paste (or essence or extract if you don't have)
1/2 tsp salt
Preheat oven to 160deg fan oven (180 non fan). Line a large brownie tin with greaseproof baking paper.
Break all of the chocolate up and place in a large pan with the cubed butter on a low heat and stir until melted, stir in the sugars and then take off the heat.
Mix in the eggs and vanilla.
Sift the flour, cocoa, salt together into the chocolate mixture and fold together.
Pour into your lined brownie tin (you don't want to fill more than 1/4- 1/2full as you will be adding the cheesecake mixture on top once baked and risen so.... depending on the size of your tray you might get to make two batches of brownies :) or line cupcake tin with strips of paper and use up the remaining mix.
Bake for about 20-25minutes or until a skewer comes out clean when tested. (15-18min if in cupcake tins)
Remove from oven and using a glass tumbler, gently press down all over the brownie evenly to create a flatter base. (optional - I had to as I had a thinner pan.)
Allow to cool completely in the tin.
This is where you can get creative. You can add any flavour into your cheesecake mix to make it to suit your cravings. Here is a raspberry swirl recipe but leave out the fresh fruit and jam and add in anything else - like a couple of tablespoons of baileys or melted chocolate (this is where you use your instincts - just don't add too much to make the mixture too runny.
300g cream cheese
50g icing sugar
1 vanilla pod (seeds scraped out)
150g double cream (whipped)
200g raspberry jam
In a bowl add the cream cheese and vanilla seeds and jam --- stir lightly to break it up.
In another bowl Whip the double cream with the icing sugar until it forms soft peaks.
Carefully fold the whipped cream mixture into the cheese mixture and add fresh fruit.
Spread the cheesecake topping on top of your cooled brownie base and the put in fridge to set. Take out 10min prior to serving and cut into squares.