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Tuesday, 28 January 2014

Chocolate Cheesecake Swirl Brownies

These are some of my absolute favorite brownies.  I can't make them often because I just want to eat them all.  You get a wonderfully deep, dark chocolate brownie that perfectly pairs with the lighter cheesecake swirls.  I prefer using vanilla bean paste in this recipe vs vanilla extract so I get a stronger vanilla flavor in each bite.  My friend Julie LOVED them and said I absolutely must get this recipe on my blog asap. I may have taken a bit longer than she was hoping, but here is the recipe, in all it's delicious easiness!  Enjoy!

Gluten Free Chocolate Cheesecake Swirl Brownies
Gluten-Free Chocolate Cheesecake Swirl Brownies
Mmm... all those lovely swirls of cheesecake mixed with brownie.   I made this in a round spring-form pan, lined with parchment paper - but I tend to just pop it into square or rectangular pans, as listed in the recipe.

Chocolate Cheesecake Swirl Brownies
Based on a recipe from Comfort Foods by Bridget Jones (this happens to be my favorite cookbook of all time - I've just been converting things bit by bit to gluten-free from this cookbook)
Makes 12-16 brownies

Preheat the oven to 325F.
Line an 8x8 pan with parchment paper, OR use two smaller pans that give you approximately an 8x8 sized space.  The wonderful thing about this recipe is that you can really make it in any size somewhere around an 8x8 pan and it will work out! This is nice if you want some to give away or take a smaller batch with you somewhere, while still having some left at home! 

In a large bowl or mixer, beat together until smooth:
1 egg
1 cup (8 oz/225 g) cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup white sugar
1 tsp vanilla bean paste (or vanilla extract)

In a large microwave-safe bowl, melt together at 50% power (so your chocolate doesn't burn - you want to melt the chocolate/butter, but not have them get too hot):
4 oz dark chocolate (minimum 70% cocoa solids)
1/2 cup butter

Mix into to chocolate/butter:
3/4 cup dark brown sugar

Stir in, until thoroughly combined:
2 eggs

Add and mix in gently:
1/2 cup Kristin's gluten-free flour mix OR 1/2 cup cornstarch OR 1/2 cup arrowroot starch (this recipe is quite flexible since there's so little flour, but you want something that will help thicken/hold things together nicely)

Spread 2/3 of the brownie mixture in your pan(s).  Spoon the cheesecake batter on top, trying to spread it around fairly evenly.  Scoop the remaining brownie mixture on top of the cheesecake batter.  Use a knife to swirl around, so you have wonderful bits of brownie and cheesecake all mixed up!

Bake at 325F 25-35 minutes (depending on the size of your pan), until the brownies are just set in the centre. I just shake the pan a little bit to see if it still jiggles alot. Once it doesn't really jiggle anymore, they're done!  These should have just a tiny bit of browning starting to happen around the edges when they're finished.

Let cool completely in pan OR let cool in pan a bit, then you can remove the brownies (using the parchment paper to pick it all up) and put it on a cooling rack if you want to help them cool faster.  Cut into squares of whatever size you desire and enjoy!

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