It’s National Chocolate Week 2012 and I fancied some brownies. I had a tub of ricotta to use up and some Cornish apples from my mother’s garden. So to celebrate this most auspicious week, I decided to experiment and make some apple ricotta cheesecake brownies.
This is how I made them:
- Peeled, cored and sliced two medium apples weighing 200g (unspecified Cornish variety) and placed in a pan.
- Added 50g vanilla sugar (caster) and a tbsp of water.
- Simmered for 5 minutes until the apples were soft and no longer wet. Allowed to cool.
- Stirred in 250g ricotta.
- Beat in 1 medium egg.
- Melted 100g unsalted butter in a large pan on low heat.
- Broke up a 100g bar 85% dark chocolate (G&B) and added to the pan.
- Added 200g dark muscavado sugar and stirred well until all smooth, then left to cool.
- Beat in 2 duck eggs and 1/2 tsp vanilla extract.
- Stirred in 75g wholemeal spelt.
- Spooned half of the batter into a 9″ square mould, covered this with the cheese and apple mixture and then topped with the remaining batter.
- Dragged the end of a teaspoon through the mixture to try and swirl it a bit, but it stubbornly decided to stay a sandwich rather than have a marble effect.
- Baked in the middle of the oven at 180C for 25 minutes when the top had set but the middle remained slightly squidgy.
The chocolate gods must have been smiling on me because these turned out to be a fitting tribute to National Chocolate Week. They had a crusty sugar top, which turned deliciously chewy in a toffeish sort of way. They were soft in the middle and would serve equally well as a pudding eaten with a spoon. They retained their shape, however and could be eaten perfectly well using fingers, as CT can testify; I did have to shoo him away from the tin. The cheese was sandwiched elegantly in the middle and acted as a foil to the dark richness of the brownie. The 85% dark chocolate combined with the slight tartness of the apple, helped to counteract the sweetness, making for a very pleasant eating experience.
As these brownies contain local and very seasonal apples, I am entering this into Simple and in Season, guest hosted this month by Nazima of Franglais Kitchen.
I’m also entering this into Javelin Warrior’s Made with Love Mondays as it is all made from scratch – of course!