Ricotta Swirl Brownie Recipe

in #hive-1205869 days ago

What you see here is my third attempt, after two pans of delicious but much too gooey–spoonable but not knifeable–substance. Delicious enough with its orange-chocolate combo, ricotta creaminess, and crunchy poppy seeds for me to keep at it. Guided meditation time: imagine eating a brownie, ricotta cheesecake, and a citrus-poppy seed muffin all at once.

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Yeah… That’s all I needed to do, isn’t it? My work here is done.

Fact: This is all you need to make good brownies. You should never trust a brownie recipe that calls for baking soda or baking powder. Unless you want cakey brownies… In which case why aren’t you making cake? (Not judgment, legitimate question, and one I ask myself every day.)

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This sugar goes into your mouth, by way of deep, dark brownie batter.

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Like any good brownie batter, this is so thick it needs to be pushed all the way to the edges of your pan with a spatula.

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Since I was already making this over and over, I experimented with all kinds of ricotta, too: whole, part-skim, and low-fat. The only one that made me nervous was low-fat: it seemed too watery to hold up, so I strained some of the liquid out. It worked alright, but I think you should stick to whole or part-skim. (I already sort of knew this would be the case… But, you know, hopeless curiosity and all. Why do they even make low-fat ricotta?)

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Yes, there are two components to this, but both are dead simple. The whole thing bakes up beautifully and smells like love itself. Fans of the orange-chocolate combo: rejoice with me.

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Third time’s a charm. And by charm, I mean a perfect square of chewy, fudgy, creamy, crunchy dessert.

This photo is going to serve as my own personal “perseverance” motivational poster.

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Recipe: Ricotta Swirl Brownie Recipe

Brownie batter:

3 1/2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1/3 cup butter, room temperature
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon cocoa powder, unsweetened

Ricotta swirl:

2/3 cup ricotta cheese (I’ve used both whole milk and part-skim; both work)
2 tablespoons sugar
Zest of one orange (about a tablespoon)
1 egg yolk
1 teaspoon poppy seeds

Preheat an oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking pan with parchment.

In a large metal bowl, sitting on top of a pot of simmering water (or a double boiler), melt chocolate and butter until smooth. Remove bowl from the heat, stir in sugar and salt and let stand for 2 minutes or so. Stir in vanilla, and then the eggs, one at a time.

In a separate bowl, sift together the flour and cocoa powder, then fold into chocolate mixture just until incorporated and smooth. Pour into prepared pan, reserving about 1/2 a cup.

To make the swirl, mix ricotta, sugar, orange zest, egg yolk, and poppy seeds in a small bowl until smooth.

Drop large spoonfuls of the swirl onto chocolate batter in the pan. Top with reserved chocolate batter, and swirl with a knife.

Bake until slightly puffed and a bit gooey in the middle–about 30 minutes.

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