5.22.2015

MangiaMore: RASPBERRY cheesecake brownies


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Now, I know you know what it’s like to want chocolate—to need chocolate. Well, that happened, like yesterday. But not really, more like Monday. I also know you know what it’s like to be super busy and have to put off frivolous baking.
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Oddly succumbing to procrastination despite my excitement, I was enchanted by the vast and delicious blogs of the Saveur Blog Awards 2015 and then I found the perfect recipe to tickle that chocolate desire.

It was a blackberry cheesecake brownie recipe that I first saw on Broma Bakery with the details in her guest post on Oh, Sweet Basil, which really caught my attention. It’s the best of both worlds.
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Well, as much as I really wanted to use blackberries, because they are pretty and dark and mysterious, I generally feel like they can be more bitter and adult than sweet and playful. So I went a different direction with these thick brownie bits of heaven. I debated between using sweet dark cherries (I had a bag in the freezer) or raspberries (on sale in the freezer section at the grocery store). In the end, raspberries prevailed.
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And the brownies turned out delightful. I wish I could say they were beautiful to look at, but alas, I can not; I have to step up my swirl game. However, they are as tasty as they are unattractive. That quick raspberry compote “swirled” into the thick cheesecake layer adds a tang and a brightness that brings depth and luxury to the dense, chewy, fudgy, chocolaty brownie below. It really is the best of both worlds—playful with color and varied textures, but refined and sophisticated with rich, sensual chocolate.

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What is the recipe you turn to when chocolate is on your mind?  Could always use another tempting chocolate treat...
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5.11.2015

MangiaMore: all-in-ONE chocolate cake

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Another day, another cake. Well, not just any day, it was Mother’s Day. Early last week, I got a brief and to the point email with a link and “How about this for Mother's Day?” Perfect.
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Mommie wanted a chocolate cake, so Mommie was going to get a chocolate cake. And the Nigella Lawson no-nonsense recipe she found would do the trick for a Mother’s Day cake.
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The All-In-One Chocolate Cake could not have been easier. Some quick measuring, pulse, pulse, pulse, and the batter is done. The frosting was just as easy, albeit it multi-stage, but it ended up being a little runny because of the loose sour cream (I ended up lightening up the frosting with more powdered sugar and sour cream for the outside of the cake, leaving the middle dark as prescribed by the recipe). The name of the recipe explains it all. Nice and easy.
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This chocolate cake is very different from the chocolate cake I usually make. My classic cake is chocolaty and moist, tall and kind of fudgy; it reeks of children birthday parties and hot fudge sundaes—delicious but not the most sophisticated.
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Lawson’s cake puts a different spin on chocolate cake for a very adult twist. The cake has a fine crumb to it, springy, but it is also dense with chocolate notes, not relying on texture. Sour cream in the frosting, made glossy with corn syrup, added a tang and another distinctive level of maturity. It is sweet, tart but also light and rich, lacking the heaviness of a cream cheese frosting. The two elements combine for subtle sweetness and layered flavors, a very grown-up and refined experience.
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Make mum anything special for the holiday? Breakfast in bed? Spring savories or seasonal sweets? Would love to hear how you celebrated and follow foodie ventures on instagram, twitter, and facebook!
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