BRRRRRRRRRRR. It’s cold. It’s particularly cold today since it’s stopped snowing and the sun has come out and the wind has howled back up again.
I like snow, actually that’s not true, I LOVE snow. I appreciate that people have things to do and places to drive and work to attend to and schools to go to etc etc etc and it gets in the way and old people slip and break their hips and people’s boilers break and it’s all very annoying. None of this deadens my excitement in any way. I have a broken radiator in my bedroom, that hasn’t spoiled the snow, I’ve grown in a world where snow was an enormous inconvenience and any squealed excitement would result in a threat of having my face rubbed in it. I’d take it over and over for a spot of snow! I don’t think there’s anything in the world that has grown adults skulking around by windows like waiting for those first flakes. My mother suffers from the same snow-obsession as I. We ring each other on sight of the first spinning white dust to shout ‘BLIZZARD ALERT’ and plan for the not-being-able-t0-get-home, welly boot wearing fun!
I will admit to not enjoying having to go to work in the snow. Partly because this time of year, I enter into a loving relationship with my electric blanket and I find it harder than ever to leave my bed but also because I want to be there in our lovely park gardens outside the house building a snowman or snowdog or snowpig even. Some of the pain of working in the snow was lessened last week by taking cake into work. Anything to get through the day!
I’ve been loathed to take in any baking since I started working here back last summer because once people get wind that you might be able to cook, the pressure intensifies and it’s like a preliminary round of Masterchef but without getting to meet Micheal Roux, who I adore and would like to worship at his feet. This recipe had a fair few challenges, I took it from an Australian website and then spent hours attempting to decode the international cup situation. American and European cups appear to be about the same size, not Australian ones! They’re half the size. Next the brownie batter seemed far too thick so I added another egg which was a terrifying mistep from the recipe. Perhaps Australian eggs are bigger than English eggs. Then the cheesecake layer turned into a white liquid which seemed far from what was needed. However, and this is a big however, in fact it’s more of a HOWEVER!, it was a whopping success. So much so that I failed completely at Weightwatchers last week. Always a sign of some good food in the recent past. Anyway, it was delicious and went completely to plan so I’ve written it out including my extra egg and without the silly cup situations…
Make this, you won’t regret it…
Most Delicious Raspberry Cheesecake Brownie
- brownie layer:
- 200g dark chocolate
- 200g soft unsalted butter (I used salted, I always do, I don’t think it makes any difference)
- 150g caster sugar
- 4 eggs
- 125g plain flour
- 3 tablespoons cocoa powder
- cheesecake layer:
- 400g cream cheese
- 150g caster sugar
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 2 eggs
- 150g fresh or frozen raspberries (I used fresh)
- Line a 10” round cake tin and set the oven to 170C.
- Melt the chocolate in a bowl over a saucepan or in the microwave. I microwaved it in 30 second bursts for about 2 minutes, I’m terrified of burning chocolate in the microwave.
- In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar for the brownie mix. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating into the mixture. It’ll probably curdle at this point, don’t worry. Stir in the chocolate, flour and cocoa powder until you have a thick batter. This batter will taste amazing, a bit like ganache, and you may struggle to retain any for actually baking!
- Spread most of the batter over the bottom of the cake tin, reserving a few spoons to stir through at the end.
- In a bowl, add all of the cheesecake ingredients with the exception of the raspberries and beat together. This ended up resembling single cream which scared me enormously, but it’s ok. It all comes together in the end!
- Pour this over the brownie base in the cake tin and stir through the brownie mix you saved.
- Push the raspberries into the cheesecake layer and dot all over the top.
- Bake in the oven for about 45 minutes, it still had a slight wobble to it.