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  • Writer's pictureJuliet

Hollywood Special - Chocolate Cheesecake Brownies

You all know about my GBBO fandom. I’ve watched most/all the seasons - from Mary Berry’s double entendres and soggy bottoms to Prue Leith’s alcohol loving ways and funky glasses, pushing through even when the comedian sidekicks took a turn for the worse (Noel) and the horrible (looking at you, Matt Lucas). The one constant, for better, or worse, is Paul Hollywood with his haunting (albeit judgy) blue eyes and superior attitude. Those that aren’t GBBO fans might not have found his spin-off show on YouTube, Paul Hollywood’s City Bakes. In this phenom of a show, Paul Hollywood travels around the world, tastes the baked goods that the city is known for, then presumes to best it with a rendition or spin of his own. That’s right…arrogant. 

In the NYC episode, Paul has bagels at a bougie cafe and cheesecake from Juniors in Brooklyn. He decides for his "City Bake" to make cheesecake brownies using Junior’s cheesecake batter (super original take, right?). I was looking for a new variation of brownies so decided to try these…and to my surprise, they are utterly delicious. There is the swirl of cheesecake, chunks of dark chocolate, and a not too rich, fudgey brownie base. The only annoying thing (as an American, I know) is that the measurements are mostly in metric. Can I get a Hollywood Handshake for making his own recipe? 



Brownie Mix:

225g (7.9oz) “plain chocolate” (45% cocoa solids) [Note: I used TJ’s semisweet - 70%]

225g (7.9oz) unsalted butter

3 large eggs

225g (7.9oz) sugar

75g (2.7oz) self-rising flour [I never have this so I use ½ c. AP flour, ¾ tsp baking powder, and ⅛ tsp salt]

½ tsp salt

1 tsp vanilla extract

Cheesecake Mix:

200g (7oz) full fat cream cheese

1 ½ tsp custard powder [I sub vanilla pudding powder]

15g (0.5oz) sugar

1 egg

½ tsp vanilla extract

60ml (2oz) heavy cream


Preheat the oven to 170 degrees C (338 degrees F - Or, if your stove counts by 25s, 325F). Line a 9x12 pan with parchment - use a little butter on the pan first so the parchment sticks.

For the brownie mix: Break the 225 grams chocolate into small chunks and place in a heatproof bowl with the butter. Place over a pan of simmering water and heat until melted. Leave to cool.

Beat the eggs and sugar together until pale and thickened. Add the melted chocolate-butter mixture to the eggs and stir until thoroughly combined. Fold in the flour, salt, 175 grams chocolate chunks, and vanilla extract. Pour into the prepared pan.

For the cheesecake mix: Using an electric whisk on a slow speed, beat the cream cheese with the custard powder [I keep a bag of vanilla pudding powder in the freezer just for this recipe], sugar, vanilla extract and double cream. Mix until smooth and all the ingredients are combined.

Drop spoonfuls of the cheesecake mix onto the brownie mix and use a spatula to fold it through the brownie, creating swirls.

Bake for 25 to 35 minutes. Check after this time as ovens vary; it may need a little longer. When done, a little mixture should still stick to a skewer inserted in the middle of the brownie (watch out for pockets of melted chocolate from the chunks - they can be deceiving!).

Leave to cool completely before cutting into squares. Printable original recipe here, but watch out, he forgets the egg addition in the cheesecake mix!



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