There is something utterly decadent about warm chocolate brownie eaten while curled up on the sofa under a blanket. At this time of year, when it is cold and grey outside, it is the ultimate treat.
These brownies, however, have a little something extra. Extra chocolatey, extra squidgy, and with a cheesecake topping swirled in. These are the lazy Sunday afternoons of the brownie world.
Ricotta cheese pairs so well with chocolate brownie – it cuts through the richness of the chocolate and adds a heavenly creaminess.
The end result is a prettily marbled, absurdly delicious, brownie.
Now, these are not in the least bit good for you – the amount of chocolate, sugar and butter puts paid to that – but that is why I chose to present them as ‘bites’ – I cut the brownie into small squares, and you really only need one to feel satisfied. As a once-in-a-while treat, these brownies are worth it. If you are going to indulge in a brownie, you may as well do it properly, rather than being disappointed with a dry, crumbly thing which has a vague cocoa aftertaste.
These brownies go best with an espresso (or, as I discovered, with a glass of medium-bodied red wine) for a luxurious evening treat.
I hope you enjoy these little delights!
(makes about 16 squares)
150g dark chocolate
250g caster sugar
75g plain flour (I used a gluten-free blend)
50g mil chococolate, chopped into small pieces
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Preheat the oven to 180C. Grease and line a rectangular baking tin.
First, make the cheesecake mixture. Beat one of the eggs and add the ricotta, vanilla extract and 75g of the caster sugar. Beat well until all the ingredients are combined and the mixture is smooth and light. Set to one side.
For the brownie mixture, break the dark chocolate into pieces and melt with the butter in a bowl over a pan of simmering water.
Beat the remaining two eggs and whisk together with the rest of the sugar, then slowly add the chocolate and butter, whisking well.
Gently fold in the flour and the milk chocolate pieces.
Pour the brownie mixture into the tin, then spoon on the cheesecake mixture. Use a knife to gently swirl the two together to make a marbled pattern.
Bake for about 35 minutes until the edges are crispy and the middle is just set.
Allow to cool in the tray for 5 mins, then cut into small squares and place on a wire rack to cool further.
While still just warm, dredge with icing sugar and enjoy!