Hello again to all you chocolate lovers! Here's February's chocolate dessert #3!
Since yesterday was my birthday, I wanted to share some of the celebration with all of you. I don't usually bake myself a birthday cake, but I thought, since I'd promised chocolate desserts this month, I would make something special that I could share.
This is really like having two desserts in one......a dense, chocolate brownie layer on the bottom and a chocolate-swirled cheesecake layer on the top.......a fun dessert for a birthday party, I think. This is a recipe I put together years ago when I had a small cheesecake business in New York. The brownie crust is a slightly adapted recipe from Better Homes and Gardens Homemade Cookies Cookbook and the cheesecake part is just a basic cheesecake filling with some chocolate, melted and swirled through.
Fudge Brownie Marble Sundae Cheesecake
2 oz. unsweetened chocolate
1/2 cup butter
1 cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
3/4 cup flour
3 (8 oz.) pkgs. cream cheese, softened
3/4 cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 oz. unsweetened chocolate, melted
To make the brownie layer, place the chocolate and butter in a saucepan over low heat and stir constantly until melted or place in a microwave-safe bowl and heat on med.-high for about 3 minutes. Add the sugar and mix thoroughly. Next, add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well. Stir in the vanilla extract and the flour.
Pour into a 9" springform pan that has been sprayed with cooking spray. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. (The brownie will not be completely cooked at this point)
To make the filling: beat the cream cheese a bit in a mixer to smooth it out.
Add the sugar and vanilla and mix on medium speed until well blended. Then add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each egg.
Blend the melted chocolate into one cup of the batter.
Spoon the plain and chocolate batters evenly over the crust and cut through the batters with a butter knife several times, swirling to give a marbled effect.
Bake the cheesecake at 450 degrees for 10 minutes. Then reduce the temperature to 250 degrees and bake for another 30 minutes. When it comes out of the oven, carefully run a butter knife around the outside of the cheesecake to loosen it from the rim. Don't worry if your cake has cracked a little. (As you'll see...mine has a couple) As it cools, it will settle a little bit and any small cracks will close up. If you have really large, open cracks, your oven may have been too hot. (It's a good idea to have a dependable oven thermometer in the oven so that you can adjust the temperature.....in case it runs too hot or too cool.) Also, avoid beating the batter too much after you've added the eggs.
Another way to help avoid cracks is to place a shallow pan of hot water on the bottom rack of your oven while baking the cheesecake. This adds extra moisture to the oven.
After the cheesecake has cooled to room temperature, chill it in the fridge. Then carefully remove the outside rim of the pan. You can then remove the cheesecake from the pan bottom and place on a serving plate of your choice. Decorate as desired. This time I decided to pipe some chilled ganache around the outside and fill the inside with some sweetened whipped cream, finely chopped nuts, and a cherry. Looks like a sundae, right?