This recipe is one that immediately stood out for me from the Hummingbird Cake Days recipe book, so has been on my ‘to bake’ list for a while! However, it was seeing a post on one of the blogs I read by Little Miss Hungry (http://littlemisshungryuk.blogspot.co.uk/) that prompted me to finally get baking it.
It’s a really simple, but pretty impressive brownie/cheesecake combo. Lovely for either a treat with a cuppa or as a dessert, it would be gorgeous with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, although, in my opinion, most things are great with a scoop of vanilla ice cream!
I would say, that while it’s a simple recipe, it is quite time consuming as it needs chilling time between a lot of the steps, so it’s not one that you can quickly pull together, so ensure you leave yourself plenty of time.
The recipe makes 12-15 bars and uses one 23x30cm (9x12in) baking tray.
Ingredients – For the base:
- 250g (90z) unsalted butter
- 420g (15oz) caster sugar
- 2 eggs
- 380g (13oz) plain flour
- 60g (2oz) cocoa powder
- 1tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
Ingredients – For the topping:
- 80g (3oz) white chocolate chips
- 300g (10.5oz) full-fat cream cheese (e.g. Philadelphia)
- 60g (2oz) icing sugar
- 1 large egg
- Using a hand-held electric whisk or a freestanding electric mixer with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add the effs one at a time, mixing thoroughly after each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl to make sure every bit of the mixture is incorporated.
- Sift together the remaining ingredients, then tip these into the batter into two batches, mixing in the freestanding mixer or folding in by hand.
- Cut off approximately one-quarter of the dough, cover with cling film and place in the fridge. Line the baking tray with baking parchment, then press the remaining dough into the tray, it’s useful if you create a bit of a raised lip around the edge of the tin to hold in the cheesecake mixture when this is poured in later. Allow it to set in the fridge for 20-30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 170 degrees C (325F), gas mark 3.
- Remove the base from the fridge and bake for 20-25 minutes. Allow to cool completely in the tin before adding the topping, but keep the oven on for cooking the finished cheesecake.
- Melt the chocolate in a glass bowl over a saucepan of simmering water then remove from the heat and allow to cool slightly. Using the electric whisk or freestanding mixer with the paddle attachment, mix the cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Add the egg and mix thoroughly, then stir the melted chocolate into the cheesecake mixture by hand.
- Spread the mixture on to the cooled base, then remove the reserved dough from the fridge and crumble in large pieces over the cheesecake.
- Bake for approximately 25 minutes or until the cheesecake has set, then allow to cool completely before placing in the fridge for a few hours to set. Once set, cut the cheesecake into squares or rectangles to serve.
This is best served when it’s been removed from the fridge and been able to come up to room temperature a bit. It’s quite hard when it comes straight from the fridge so I would take out at least half an hour before you intend to serve.