Monday, September 26, 2005
Mondays with Maida - Cream-Cheese Brownies
Page 76 in the old book / page 124 in the new book
I've never been fond of cheesecake, so I approached these brownies with some suspicion. I know I should give cheesecake another chance, and indeed the cream cheese mixture in these brownies was quite nice. Overall, though, I was disappointed with the brownies - mostly because of their texture.
In a later recipe Maida cautions against overbeating the eggs, because that creates a cakelike texture. Yet with this recipe you are instructed to beat the egg and sugar mixture for 3 to 4 minutes on high speed. My guess is that the intention is to make the brownie part of the cookie more similar in texture to the cream cheese portion of the cookie. I could have been happy with a cakey inside if there had at least been a little crunch on the outside. But in spite of that beautiful, glossy exterior, there was no crunch whatsoever.
I also thought that the brownies weren't especially chocolatey, but with 4 ounces of semi-sweet chocolate (I used 51% Callebaut semi-sweet) for a 9-inch pan of brownies, I think it was the texture rather than an insufficient amount of chocolate that got in the way of my chocolate experience.
The ratings were a mixed bag again this week...
Suzanne: "What could be better? Cream cheese, chocolate brownie and walnuts. The brownie was cake-like and the cream cheese was moist. Great brownie! Rating - 5"
Denny: "Very very good. Not too chewy maybe needed a little more cream cheese. Rating - 4.8"
Laura: "Moist and tasty, but I guess I don't really prefer cream cheese in with my brownies. I'm more of an 'All Chocolate Brownie' gal. Rating - 3.0"
Phil: "These attractive, marbled morsels underscore the fact that good looks only get you so far. While still flavorful, the cream cheese tended to crowd out much of the rich chocolate and nut flavors so prominent among the heavyweights in this field. Rating - 3.4"
Overall rating by the panel - 4.1
Next week - Fudge Brownies