Red Velvet Cheesecake Brownies

Gooey and decadent but not too rich, these brownies are right up there with some of the best I’ve ever made or eaten. The cheesecake top balances out the fudgy chocolatey-ness perfectly, making these little squares pretty irresistible – and they’re gorgeous too! I made these beauties as a Valentines gift for Luke and they were a mega hit. I can’t wait to make them again 🙂

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I spotted this recipe (among loads of others that I can’t wait to try) when I was browsing the Philosophy of Yum site – Aurelia is a Cape Town based home baker who makes the most delicious treats. If you’re in need of baked goods or you’re wanting to improve your own baking, you have to check out her website!

These brownies make for the perfect gift or party contribution, but you could also make them when you’re just in the mood for a treat – this recipe doesn’t make an insanely huge batch. They’re pretty quick and relatively easy to make, so definitely give them a go – you can thank me later! 

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What You’ll Need:

For the brownies:

  • 180g flour
  • 35g cocoa powder
  • 5g Salt
  • 210g unsalted butter (if you can’t find unsalted butter, just use normal butter and leave out the 5g of salt)
  • 40g 70% dark chocolate, finely chopped
  • 160g white sugar
  • 105g demerara sugar (I couldn’t find any so I just used brown sugar)
  • 2tsp vanilla extract
  • 140g eggs (about 2 eggs as well as the left over egg from the cheesecake mix)
  • 10ml liquid red food colouring
  • 1tsp white spirit vinegar

For the cheesecake swirl:

  • 160g cream cheese (medium fat, non-aerated)
  • 25g granulated sugar
  • 25g egg white (roughly one egg white)
  • 1tsp vanilla

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What You’ll Do:

  1. Spray and line a brownie tin/heat-proof dish with baking paper (the dimensions of my dish were roughly 17x27x3cm). Preheat your oven to 170ºC and turn it onto the regular bake setting – not the fan setting (you can turn on your oven later in the prep process if it heats up quickly).
  2. To make the cheesecake component of the brownies, beat the egg white and cream cheese together in a small bowl until smooth (for around 30 seconds), then beat in the sugar and vanilla for about 10-20 seconds. Place the bowl into the fridge – we’ll get back to it soon.
  3. Melt the butter in the microwave. Watch it closely – when it starts to boil, take it out. Don’t leave it to its own devices for too long or it might boil over and make a mess!
  4. Pour the melted butter into a large bowl and add in the chocolate, white sugar and demerara sugar. Beat them together on a medium speed for around 15 seconds, then put the bowl aside to stand for a bit so that the mixture can melt together nicely.
  5. Next, lightly stir together the eggs, vanilla, food colouring and vinegar in a separate bowl.
  6. Return to your butter/chocolate mixture and beat it again for about 15 seconds. Add in the red egg mixture and beat on a low speed until combined (for about 15 seconds).
  7. Sift the flour, cocoa powder and salt into the liquid mixture and beat on a medium speed for about 3 minutes.
  8. Pour the batter into the tin and let it sit in the fridge for about 10 minutes to firm up.
  9. Take the cheesecake mix out of the fridge and beat it again for about 30 seconds.
  10. Take the brownie mix out of the fridge and drop dollops of the cheesecake mix on top, making sure to leave some sections of the batter uncovered. Swirl the two batters together with a chopstick to make a beautiful spiraly pattern of goodness.
  11. Bake the brownies for 35-40 minutes, turning the tin around halfway through. Do keep checking them though – if you overcook these guys they won’t taste nearly as good. They’re perfectly cooked when a toothpick comes out almost completely clean.
  12. Pull out the brownies and let them cool for a few minutes before slicing them up into squares.

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Happy baking (and eating)!

A x

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