Sunday, November 21, 2010

pumpkin cheesecake brownie fusion

The "fusion" bit comes from Noosh. She insisted they weren't "brownie" enough to be called such.

Tommy came over earlier today for a bake date, our first one since the pumpkin macarons back in October. I had decided on this recipe a while ago, and was really excited to be baking with him [because, come on, he's pretty much the best dessert sous chef ever].

These were actually made for my dear friend Olivia, who turns 19 tomorrow. Of course, we did try some for ourselves, to make sure all our hard work had paid off. And also because I cannot resist anything made out of cream cheese.

left: brownie base; right: pumpkin cheesecake topping

Pumpkin Cheesecake Brownies

For the brownie base, you'll need:

  • 4 oz chocolate
  • 1 1/2 sticks butter
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup flour

For the pumpkin cheesecake topping, you'll need:
  • 2 8-oz packages cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 14-oz can pumpkin [NOT pumpkin pie filling]
  • 1 tsp grated ginger [or 1/2 tsp powdered ginger]
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease and line a 9x13-inch pan with parchment paper or aluminum foil.

For brownie base: melt butter and chocolate in a microwave or stovetop. While chocolate mixture is cooling, beat sugar, eggs, and vanilla in an electric mixer on medium speed until well-mixed. Slowly pour in chocolate mixture and mix until blended. Slowly fold in flour. Spread brownie batter evenly on the bottom of the 9x13-inch pan. Set aside while preparing cheesecake topping.

For pumpkin cheesecake topping: beat cream cheese in the bowl of an electric mixer with the paddle attachment on medium speed until light and fluffy, 3-5 minutes. Slowly pour in heavy cream and beat until incorporated. Add in sugar and beat until smooth. Add in eggs, one at a time, beating until well incorporated. Add in vanilla and beat until smooth. Measure out 3/4 cup of cheesecake topping and set aside to use for swirling. In remaining cheesecake topping, add in pumpkin, ginger, and spices and mix until well-blended. Pour pumpkin cheesecake topping on top of brownie base and spread evenly. Use a spoon to dollop the leftover cheesecake topping over the pumpkin cheesecake layer. With a knife, swirl the white cheesecake topping. Bake for 60 minutes. Let pan cool completely, and then refrigerate for at least 4 hours before cutting and serving.

These were much less brownie-like and much more souffle-like when I cut them. I was pretty surprised. But they are absolutely delicious. Noosh and Tommy both approved. Hopefully Olivia will as well!

I did toss in about 1/4 cup of chocolate chips into the brownie batter after it was done. I always like a chocolate chip brownie, personally. I actually wasn't sure how the pumpkin and chocolate would taste together [it didn't seem like a very compatible pair to me before], but it was really good. I guess the sentiment is similar to chocolate chip banana bread [which, by the way, is divine].

Mom is both highly amused and frustrated with my recent baking binge. But I mean, there are only 2 class days until break, so there's not much else I could be doing with my time at the moment. Right?

the only thing i want on black friday is a better lens.

Speaking of break, I heard some terrible news earlier this evening: Thanksgiving dinner will not be happening this year. :( Believe me when I say that I am devastated.

Well, not devastated. But pretty sad. I mean, my entire menu, all planned out, for naught! There's just a lot going on at home at the moment, and we recently found out there will be more people over than originally anticipated, so we're just going to be going out instead. And the turkey mom had bought for my use will be saved for sometime during winter break.

Though, I can't say I'm too disappointed at the thought of having a Thanksgiving meal later in the year. It'll be a pleasant surprise. And my original menu can wait till then!

Besides, I'm not one to pass up a dinner at Texas de Brazil. Ever.


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