Ready for a delicious recipes for brownies? Why not, right? Hi everyone, it’s Jillian here with this month’s Delicious Bites post. With Easter just around the corner, my initial thought was to do something chocolately, then my thoughts turned to cheesecake, as they often do. I try to keep my chocolate consumption down to a bare minimum but sometimes nothing else but chocolate will do. Do you feel the same way? With both chocolate and cheesecake on my mind I decided to put the two together and came up with this, a recipe for chocolate cheesecake brownies. These little squares are an absolute favourite with my workmates and when I take them into work for morning tea they disappear in a flash.
There’s something about the combination of cheesecake with just set chocolate brownie that’s irresistible. The secret ingredient is the potato flour (starch) which helps keep the brownie mixture moist and squidgy while the cheesecake part is cooking. The swirl is important but you do need to do it gently to keep the 2 mixtures separate. I used the closest thing I had at hand to do this, which in this case was a chop stick.
The brownies are very rich so I normally cut them into squares but if you’re brave, then cut them into bars.
Here’s the recipe for you and trust me, you’ll be glad you made them.
125g (4 oz) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
185g (6 oz) dark chocolate, chopped
2/3 cup caster sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1/4 cup plain flour
1/4 cup potato flour (starch)
1 1/2 (20 ml) tbs cocoa
250g (8 oz) cream cheese, at room temperature
1 large egg
1/4 cup caster sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Grease and line the base and sides of a 8 inch (20cm) square pan with baking paper or aluminum foil, making sure the paper goes up all four sides. Preheat oven to 180°C/350°F (conventional). Sift the flours together with the cocoa into a small bowl. Melt the butter and chocolate in a bowl placed over a medium saucepan filled with simmering water, stirring until smooth. You could also do this in the microwave. Remove the bowl from heat and mix in the 2/3 cup sugar, then the eggs. Mix in the flour and cocoa mixture and beat vigorously with a wooden spoon until the batter becomes smooth and glossy. Spread half the brownie mixture evenly in the prepared pan. In a separate bowl, beat together the cream cheese, the egg, 1/4 cup of sugar and vanilla extract until smooth. You could also do this step in a food processor. Dollop the cream cheese alternately with the remaining brownie mixture over the batter in the pan, then take a knife or spatula (or even a chopstick) and gently swirl the cream cheese mixture with the chocolate batter.
Bake in the preheated 180°C/350°F oven for 35 to 45 minutes, or until the batter in the centre of the pan is just set. Leave the brownie in the switched off oven with the door slightly ajar for a further 15 minutes. Cool on a wire rack, then lift the brownie out of the tin and peel away the foil. Cut the brownies into squares or bars. These will keep in an airtight container for a couple of days. They also freeze well.
Wishing all of you a vert Happy Easter and Passover! I’ll see you all again next month with some more Delicious Bites for you, Bye for now – Jillian
(images/text: jillian lieboff)
Want to win a copy of Eat & Make by Sweet Paul? We’re giving away 5 signed and dedicated copies… But first, I’m a friend and fan of Paul Lowe, we met once in New York City when I was teaching there and I wrote for his magazine last year. Bottom line – I really admire him; Paul is hands down the real deal and he has built his business from the ground up which I find so inspiring since I remember when he was just starting out online. He has always been consistently authentic, kind and supportive of the online community, and so unselfish with his time giving me advice and direction on things most people wouldn’t share so freely. I really have a soft spot in my heart for Paul as a person, but there is so much more to him than his relaxed and generous nature – he’s a terrific talent with loads of creative vision as we’ve all seen demonstrated in his issues of Sweet Paul magazine over the years — but now there’s even more… A BOOK. (swoon!)
His debut book, Eat & Make, drops today (April 1) and to celebrate, I’ve teamed up with Paul and his publisher, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, to offer you a chance to WIN a signed and dedicated copy from Paul himself of Eat & Make. Here is a little video that he made just for decor8 readers…
Eat & Make merges cooking (loads of delish recipes, I’m definitely trying his fish taco recipe this summer) with kitchen crafting (salad bowl pendant lights, anyone?) for a creative spin on your typical cookery book. I love the combination of crafting with cooking and especially enjoy how personal this book is with photos from his own life and friends dancing around each chapter, I find it all to be quite endearing. I’ve written 3 books and haven’t had the courage to do that yet, to get so personal with photos of me throughout, so perhaps I’ll really bare all and be more like Paul in my next book. He can really pull this off so well because he is quite charming!
Another point about the book that grabbed my attention instantly was the book cover – showing his photo, recipes and crafts, it really told a story to me so I instantly new what the book was all about before even reading the title.
I also LOVE the watercolor-y illustrations by Susan Evenson throughout, I’m a big fan of watercolor so this was a big plus for me. The over book design by Joline Rivera and Nellie Williams is hands down stunning. I am so particular about book layout, and this one feels like something out of South Africa or Australia to me – very fresh like I found most cookery books from those parts of the world. The photography by Alexandra Grablewski makes the book because let’s face it, you can style and cook something wonderful but your photographer can ruin it with a bad angle or poor lighting – Alexandra doesn’t disappoint – the photos shine through and through. I also must mention that in addition to Paul Lowe (Sweet Paul himself) his collegue Paul Vitale worked on lots of the writing in the book, so it’s a real collaborative effort with a talented team of people.
If you want to win a signed and dedicated copy of Eat & Make, comment below with the reason why you LOVE SWEET PAUL! That’s it! (Originally I asked people to tweet but lots of you wrote in stating you don’t use/want to use Twitter so I want to take everyone into consideration and open this contest up to ALL.)
you’ll need to tweet and complete the following sentence and tell us why you love Sweet Paul’s style. Cut and paste the following, filling in your thoughts in the blank and make sure to end the tweet with @sweetpaul and @decor8 so we see them!
#ilovesweetpaul because _______ @sweetpaul @decor8″
Then comment below letting us know who you are and what you tweeted. The winners will be announced on April 8th!
Good luck everyone! And if you simply cannot wait to own a copy of Paul’s gorgeous book, click here to order a hard copy of kindle version on Amazon.
Update: The WINNERS are: #3 Lou, #11 Cintia, #15 Ann, Boheme Circus #26 and Sarah Lou #63. If you are listed here, please contact jessy [at] decor8blog [dot] com as soon as possible and let her know what you would like for Paul to write inside of your book, in addition to his signature of course, along with your mailing address. Thank you!
(images: holly becker)
Did you win? You’re about to find out! It’s April 1st so for those of you who entered our contest you know what that means! Time to announce the
3 (I changed my mind, I’m giving away 5 seats!) lucky winners who will win a free seat in our April/May blogging e-course! But first, I want to thank everyone who entered, it was so encouraging to see the excitement this contest generated online and to read your comments and tweets. I’m so pumped and inspired to really rock the upcoming course with Tina Fussell so watch out! :) For those of you who haven’t registered yet, we are nearly sold out so please don’t delay if you want in since once we close registration, it’s closed for good, since we only reserved a set amount if seats for this particular class so the group is smaller. If you want to learn about our class, beginning online April 18, CLICK HERE. If you want to join in on the fun, CLICK HERE.
Okay…. Drum roll and envelope pahleeseee!
The winners are… Click here.
Hi guys! Would you like to see another home tour I’ve shot this month for decor8? It’s Holly Marder and I’m back with my Homes with Heart installment. Did you love last month’s black and white home? Well this time around, I have more Nordic interior inspiration, with a touch of colour dotted throughout. I hope you enjoy touring the home of Jessica Peters, the owner of the online interiors boutique DesignLemonade. Let’s go!
After a long and tiring house hunt, Jessica Peters and her husband Olivier Tardieu fell in love with the historical appeal of their 92m2 Amsterdam home. Majestic, authentic door frames leading out to an elegant closed verandah with quaint window frames and original stained glass were some of the details that caught the couple’s eye, just enough for Peters to see through the uninspiring wall colour, lack of flooring and less than ideal kitchen and bathroom. “It was so basic that there was room to make it ours – and the moment I saw the house I thought, ‘this is perfect.’”
The fine art black and white photograph perched on the fireplace is a personal favourite, displaying a set of open windows. “It feels as though it gives the room an open, airy quality. It is very hard to find authentic, easy, simple pieces to put on your walls, so I’m glad I found it,” she says.
The couple began renovating the home in stages, starting with the kitchen. They wanted a live-in kitchen central to the main living area to bridge the living and work spaces. Offsetting their home’s historical architecture, they chose a sleek, minimalistic kitchen with plenty of storage in the centre island so that the walls would be free of cabinets and the space would remain open. Being a classic ‘Pijpenla’ home (which means a narrow drawer-like home typical to Amsterdam), the middle of the house is very dark but large windows infuse each end with light, so keeping the kitchen as sleek as possible was important to ensure the natural light in the space was not compromised.
“I wanted the kitchen to be a real piece of furniture in the living room. We chose an elegant design. Everything is very slender, which I feel corresponds with the stained glass, narrow window frames of the verandah, and the original details.”
In the space of three months the couple changed the entire layout of their home to end up with the current design. In the initial layout, the bedroom was where the bathroom now is, and the kitchen is what is now the bathroom. Rethinking the layout and centralising the kitchen meant the couple had gained the space for a large family bathroom, which they realised three years into owning their home. “We were young and were on a very limited budget as I began studying shortly after we bought the house,” Peters says.