Thursday, May 06, 2010

an idea a month in the making


So on April Fool's Day, I met my friend for dinner and he brought up the idea of putting nutella into brownies. Much to his surprise, I told him that I'd seen recipes for such a thing before, and we planned to meet again to bake some soon.

Soon is a relative term, and the semester is now almost over, and it wasn't until reading week that we were able to find a mutually agreeable time to bake the brownies. Which aren't just nutella brownies, they're nutella cheesecake brownies from alpine berry.

Her recipe is surprisingly simple, and extraordinarily rich. I didn't quite follow it (I'm sorry, but did I really need to unwrap that third stick of butter? The answer: no), but the brownies turned out anyway.

However, a week ago I made more sweet corn brownies, and my pan disappeared. I had to borrow a pan to make these brownies, and when I get home, I'll have to replace my pan. I'm not looking forward to that - I'm super indecisive, it took me forever to pick out a bundt cake. But I'll be optimistic, I have about 89 more hours for it to turn up before I completely lose hope.

And, it's not the end of the world. It's just a pan.

Nutella Brownie Cheesecake
adapted from alpine berry
Makes a 9x13 pan of very fudgy brownies

Brownie layer:
2 sticks (8 ounces) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
2/3 cup Nutella (chocolate-hazelnut spread)
4 large eggs
2 cups granulated sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup natural cocoa powder

Cheesecake layer:
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1/3 cup Nutella

Preheat oven to 325ºF. Line 9x13 inch baking pan with parchment or greased aluminum foil.

First, make the brownie layer:
Combine butter, Nutella, eggs, and sugar in a large bowl and mix well. Stir in flour and cocoa powder and mix until combined. Pour batter into prepared pan and spread evenly. Set aside.

For the cheesecake layer, beat together the cream cheese and sugar. Beat in the eggs and Nutella until well combined.* Pour over brownie batter in pan.

Bake until the cheesecake layer looks set, about 50 minutes. Allow brownies to cool completely in the pan before cutting. If storing, keep refrigerated.

*I originally combined all the ingredients for the cheesecake layer together at once, but it was a little lumpy. Hopefully this will solve that problem.

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