Friday, May 27, 2011

Raspberry Cream Cheese Brownies
knock it out of the park

Raspberry Cream Cheese Brownies (click for the recipe), the latest dessert I’ve made from Cook’s Country magazine, are pure pleasure.
   Each brownie is a heavenly combination of rich, spongy chocolate, lined with a cream cheese and raspberry middle. There is also some raspberry jam in the brownie portion, heightening the berry-awesome experience (yes, that was extremely cheeseball of me.)
   The first time I tried a bite of these, I had to stop and savor the taste for a moment, closing my eyes and saying to my husband, “My goodness, these are good.”
   My husband agreed as he munched away on a brownie.
   I found the taste to be best the day the brownies were made and the day after. Although the brownies maintain a rich chocolate flavor and nice soft texture after that time, the taste of the raspberry middle begins to fade.
   But if you serve these to a family, they’ll disappear so quickly you won’t even need to think about a timeline.
   The recipe I linked to above is on a blog, and it is nearly exactly the same as the one I used, with the exception of one mysterious error. The second paragraph of the directions says to add oil, which doesn’t exist in the recipe ingredients, so don’t worry about it!
   The recipe for Raspberry Cream Cheese brownies can also be found in the excellent cookbook Cook's Country Blue Ribbon Desserts.
   The recipe says to microwave the butter and chocolate in a large bowl then add the other ingredients. Rather, I microwaved them in a smaller bowl and added the butter/chocolate combination to the other ingredients.
   A filling is made by processing softened cream cheese, vanilla, sugar and egg yolk in a food processor.
   The first step in making the brownies is stirring together sugar, eggs, and vanilla until combined.
   Butter and chopped unsweetened chocolate are microwaved until melted, and ¼ cup of raspberry jam is whisked in. After a slight cooling time, this is added to the sugar mixture. A combination of flour, baking powder and and salt is whisked in to create a batter.
   Half of the batter is scraped into an eight-inch square baking plan lined with greased aluminum foil, then the filling is dolloped over and spread into an even layer. Raspberry jam that has been microwaved slightly is dolloped over the filling, and with the tip of a knife, it is swirled in. The remaining batter is spread evenly over the filling.
   The brownies are baked, 50 to 60 minutes, then left to cool for a least two hours before cutting into squares.

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