3 dessert recipes in a row! YES! As you know, I love baking in fall! The kitchen is no longer hot. Watching the rising baked goods and smelling that aroma just makes it feels like home. Warm and comfort. That puts me in a happy mood.
Halloween is coming up next week. In the past few years, we carved some cool pumpkins with my sister (here, here & here). We usually carve pumpkins on the weekend. This year, Halloween lands on a Friday. Carved pumpkins just couldn’t last this long without getting moldy and shrunk. Also, we are in the middle of getting to move. Boxes are everywhere. So, we are skipping the tradition of pumpkin carving. Hopefully, we will get back to it next year. But Halloween is a fun holiday that can’t be skipped. This spider web cheesecake brownie would be a good way to celebrate.
These brownies are rich and intense. You may think the pumpkin flavor won’t be able to stand side by side with the strong chocolate flavor. This is not the case. The pumpkin puree was reduced in half to enhance the flavors. You can taste the creaminess of the pumpkin cheesecake with a hint of spices. Then, there was the rich and fudgy brownie. The cheesecake and brownie were an amazing match. One thing to remember: be patient and let the brownie set overnight before cutting into these goodies. Trust me, the wait will be worth it!
Pumpkin Cheesecake Brownies (Adapted from Eat The Love)
– 15 ounces pumpkin puree (canned or homemade)
– ¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon
– ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
– 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
– ¼ teaspoon kosher salt or sea salt
– 12 ounces cream cheese (cold)
– 1 cup sugar
– 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
– 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
– 2 large eggs
– ¾ cup unsalted butter
– 1½ cup sugar
– ¾ cup dark brown sugar
– 1 cup Dutch-processed cocoa powder
– 1 teaspoon kosher salt or sea salt
– ½ teaspoon baking powder
– 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
– 3 large eggs
– 1 cup all purpose flour
– 1/3 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
– 1 tablespoon milk
- Preheat the oven to 375˚F. In a 9 x 13-inch baking pan, lightly greased the bottom and sides with vegetable oil. Line the bottom and long sides of the pan with a piece of parchment paper, leaving about a 2-inch overhang on the long sides.
- To make the cheesecake batter, in a large pan over medium high heat, add the pumpkin puree. Reduce by half to about 1 cup, about 10 minutes, stirring constantly. Becareful not to burnt the puree. If needed, reduce heat to medium. Remove from heat and stir in the cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and salt.
- In a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese on high speed until fluffy, about 1 minute. Add the hot pumpkin puree and beat until blend. Add the sugar and beat again until combined. Add vanilla extract and flour. Mix well. Add the eggs, one at a time, to mix until just blended. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, combine the cocoa powder, salt, and baking powder. Set aside.
- To make the brownie batter, in a medium saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter, sugar and dark brown sugar until the mixture has a uniform butterscotch color and aroma, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon. Remove from heat and add the cocoa powder mixture and vanilla extract. Mix well. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating with a wooden spoon, to combine. Stir in flour and mix well. Spoon out 1/3 cup brownie batter to a small bowl and set aside. Add the chocolate chips to the remaining batter and fold in.
- Transfer the brownie batter to the prepared baking pan and spread evenly. Add the cheesecake batter on top and spread evenly.
- For the reserved brownie batter, stir in the milk and mix well. Pour the batter into a ziplock bag. Cut a very small hole in the corner of the bag with scissors. Pipe straight diagonal lines onto the cheesecake batter, about 1-inch apart. Using a toothpick or table knife, drag lines from the initial corner to all the other three corners, creating a spider web pattern.
- Bake in the oven for 35 minutes or until the cheesecake batter has puffed up and looks set. Cool the pan on a wire rack. Cover and refrigerate to cool overnight. Use a sharp knife to separate the brownie from the pan. Lift the brownie out of the pan. Cut the brownie into 24 pieces.
- Reduce the pumpkin puree in half helps to enhance the pumpkin flavors. It is a must.
- If you don’t want to, you can skip the spider web pattern and make something else.
- I messed up my pattern a little bit as I was distracted by the FedEx guy, who was making a delivery to our place while I was drawing. But at least, it can still be recognized as a web. Not too bad. To make sure there is no mistake, you can do a practice run on a piece of parchment paper.
- Definitely wait for the brownies to set overnight. It is worth the wait.
- For storage, keep the brownie in an airtight container in the fridge for 2 days.