Sunday, September 14, 2008

Cherry Cheesecake Brownie Cupcakes Recipe

The double dulce de leche cupcakes disappeared in about two minutes, and I got yet another cupcake idea last night, so I ended up making more this afternoon. At any given time I have a list in my head of at least four or five recipes I want to try, so maybe I bake too many cupcakes, but it's either that or fall behind! Although I got a lead on a good chocolate chip cookie recipe today, so I suspect that I'm no further ahead.

These cupcakes were inspired by a recipe for cherry cheesecake brownies that my Dad used to make when I was little. Don't let their humble appearance fool you. These cupcakes are dense, moist and packed with flavour. They're topped with a fudge frosting so rich that you only need a thin layer on top rather than a big swirl. Really, they don't need frosting at all.Here's the recipe. You should definitely try them!

One quick note about the recipe: I was running out of butter and cocoa towards the end of this, so I just threw together the frosting out of what I had. Feel free to use a different recipe, I just included this one for completeness.

Recipe: Cherry Cheesecake Brownie Cupcakes

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Makes approximately two dozen cupcakes


Brownie Batter:
  • 1 cup butter
  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
Cherry Filling:
  • 1 8oz package of cream cheese
  • 1 egg
  • 2 Tbsp flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2/3 cup maraschino cherries (chopped)
Chocolate Fudge Frosting
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 2 (1 oz) squares unsweetened chocolate
  • 1 lb icing sugar
  • 2 Tbsp cocoa
  • 4 Tbsp milk
To make the brownie batter, first melt the butter. Add ingredients in the order listed, mixing until combined after each addition. Mix flour, baking powder and salt together in a separate bowl before adding to the liquid mixture.

In another bowl, beat cream cheese and 1 egg with an electric mixer until light and fluffy (about three minutes). Add sugar and flour and stir until combined. Mix in cherries.

To assemble cupcakes, first put a small spoonful of brownie batter into each cup. The batter will raise while baking, so you only need enough to cover the bottom of the cups. Use a small spatula to spread the batter out to the edges of the bottom of the cup.

Spoon a generous tablespoon of cherry filling into each cup. If you have any left over filling, you can fill any empty spots in your muffin tin with it. Its not exactly a cupcake, but it tastes good.

Top with another spoonful of brownie batter. Using a spatula, gently spread brownie batter out to the edges of the cupcake cup so that the cherry filling is completely covered (add more batter if required). The cups should be about 3/4 full.

Bake for 23 to 25 minutes. Cupcakes are done when the top center of each cupcake is cooked.

To make frosting, melt butter and chocolate in a small bowl in the microwave, stirring every 30 seconds until melted and smooth.

Place icing sugar, cocoa and 2 Tbsp of milk in a large bowl. Add melted butter and chocolate and mix until smooth and uniform. Add remaining milk until the frosting reaches the desired consistency. Lightly frost the cupcakes using a smooth spatula or butter knife.

Here is a picture of what the cupcakes look like inside. As you can see, the batter rises up in the middle, while the cheesecake filling stays the same size, so it makes a stripe across the inside of the cupcake.