Espresso Brownie Cheesecake

I made this based on the recipe I found at the Life In A Peanut Shell blog: Espresso Cheesecake Brownies but the recipe is originally from the cookbook: “Baking: From My Home To Yours” by Dorie Greenspan. Regardless of how I found the recipe, the name alone was enough to make me want to try it!

Based on the recommendation in that post, I baked it in a round cake pan instead of a square pan. I’m not sure if it was the cheesecake-like slices or the taste, but I decided “Espresso Brownie Cheesecake” was a more appropriate name. I followed the recipe exactly for the brownies (actually very similar to my Chewy Fudge Brownie recipe before I switched the unsweetened chocolate to cocoa) and the cheesecake, but I left the topping off. Instead I topped with whipped cream and chocolate shavings. Around the edge I piped a border of Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting.

Here’s what I did:

Brownies:

1/2 cup flour
1/4 tsp. baking powder
1/8 tsp. salt
5 Tbsp. unsalted butter, cut into cubes
4 oz. bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1/3 c. sugar
2 eggs
1/2 tsp. vanilla

Mix together the dry ingredients. Heat butter and chocolate, stirring until ingredients melt, but do not overheat. Remove from heat and set aside. Stir sugar in to chocolate mixtures with whisk. Add eggs one at a time. Beat well after each egg, then stir in vanilla. Gently stir in dry ingredients until the disappear. Set aside.

Cheesecake:

1 1/2 tsp. instant espresso powder dissolved in 1 Tbsp. boiling water
8 oz. cream cheese, room temp.
2/3 c. sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla
2 eggs
1/4 c. sour cream
1 Tbsp. flour

Allow espresso to cool. Beat cream cheese until smooth. Add sugar and beat a couple minutes. Beat in vanilla and espresso before adding eggs one at a time. Beat for a minute after each egg. Reduce speed and add sour cream and flour.

Pour about 3/4 of the brownie mixture into greased 9″ springform pan. Smooth it out, the pour the cheesecake layer over the top, and make it even. Drop spoonfuls of the rest of the brownie batter on top and swirl the two batters together with a knife, but only as much as necessary.

Bake for ~30 minutes in preheated 350 degree oven. Let room to room temperature and then refrigerate for at least 2 hours until well chilled.

Spread whipped cream on top and pipe border using Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting. Finish with chocolate shavings.

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