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Cappuccino Brownies

March 6, 2011

I have been severely lacking in lunchbox dessert at work lately, so I finally decided to do some baking yesterday! These cappuccino brownies caught my eye last week in my ex-library copy of The Gourmet Cookbook, as I’m a sucker for any coffee/mocha-flavored dessert. Although this was my first time making this particular recipe, I think these brownies turned out fabulous. They are rich and fudge-like, just the way I like them. The hint of cinnamon in the cream cheese layer nicely complements the coffee and chocolate flavors, and the walnuts in the brownie layer add varying texture.

Although the start-to-finish time is long (7 hours!), most of that time is spent on each layer chilling, so overall, they were not time-consuming nor tricky to make. You just have to remember to start them early enough if you want to eat some the same day! To make them easier to remove from the pan, I lined the bottom with greased parchment paper in addition to buttering and flouring the pan. They came out without a hitch. The top two layers of these brownies will get quite soft if left at room temperature for any period of time, so plan on keeping them refrigerated until ready to serve.

Cappuccino brownies


Makes 40 brownies

Can be made up to 5 days ahead: keep in one layer in an airtight container, refrigerated.

Ingredients

Brownie layer

  • 8  ounces good bittersweet chocolate (not unsweetened), chopped
  • 1 1/2  sticks (12 tablespoons) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 2  tablespoons instant espresso powder, dissolved in 1 1/2 teaspoons boiling water
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 2  teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 4  large eggs
  • 1  cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2  teaspoon salt
  • 1  cup (3 1/2 ounces) walnuts, chopped

Cream cheese layer

  • 8  ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 3/4  stick (6 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/2  cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 1  teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1  teaspoon ground cinnamon

Glaze

  • 6  ounces good bittersweet chocolate (not unsweetened), finely chopped
  • 2  tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/2  cup heavy cream
  • 1 1/2  tablespoons instant espresso powder, dissolved in 1 tablespoon boiling water

Directions

For the brownie layer:

  1. Put a rack in middle of oven and preheat oven to 350ºF. Butter and flour a 13-by-9-inch baking pan, knocking off excess flour.
  2. Melt chocolate with butter and espresso mixture in a medium metal bowl set over a pan of barely simmering water, stirring until smooth. Remove bowl from heat and cool for 10 minutes.
  3. Whisk sugar and vanilla into chocolate mixture, then add eggs one at a time, whisking until batter is smooth. Stir in flour and salt until just combined, then stir in walnuts.
  4. Spread batter evenly in baking pan. Bake until a wooden pick or skewer inserted in center comes out with some crumbs adhering, 22 to 27 minutes. Coll completely in pan on a rack, at least 2 hours.

For the cream cheese layer:

  1. Beat together cream cheese and butter in a large bowl with an electric mixture on medium speed until light and fluffy. Sift in confectioners’ sugar, then add vanilla and cinnamon and beat until mixture is well combined.
  2. Spread cream cheese mixture evenly over cooled brownie layer. refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour.

For the glaze:

  1. Combine all ingredients in a metal bowl set over a saucepan of barely simmering water and heat, stirring, until chocolate and butter are melted and glaze is smooth. Remove from heat and cool to room temperature, stirring occasionally, about 20 minutes.
  2. Pour glaze over cream cheese layer, then spread evenly. Refrigerate brownies, covered, until cold, about 3 hours. Cut into 40 bars and remove from pan while still cold. Serve chilled or at room temperature.

One comment

  1. Nothing flavored mocha can be bad!



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