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Cream Cheese Brownies

This is my new favorite dessert.   I have never had a better cream cheese brownie in my entire life.  I especially love them cold.  Straight from the freezer is best, although they’re delicious at room temperature as well.   One of my sons informed me that this is the best dessert I have ever made.  I might just have to agree with him.

These brownies come together in no time at all.   You need a couple of bowls because you mix the chocolate and cream cheese layers separately.   Once mixed, you layer them in the pan, swirl the top and voila!  you’re ready to throw them into the  oven.   At the 50 minute mark, remove them from the oven.   You don’t want them to overcook.

Cream Cheese Brownies
Recipe from Tate’s Bake Shop Cookbook by Kathleen King

1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 pound cream cheese, room temperature
1 3/4 cups sugar
4 large eggs at room temperature
3 teaspoons vanilla
1 cup (salted) butter, softened to room temperature
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Line a 9-inch-square baking pan with aluminum foil so that the foil extends two inches beyond the sides of the pan. (This creates handles you can use to remove the brownies later.  You only need the foil to extend on two sides, not all four.) Spray the foil with nonstick cooking spray.

Melt the chocolate chips in a small saucepan over low heat.  Stir them while they’re melting so they don’t burn.  Set the pan aside to cool.

In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese and 1/4 cup of the sugar until they are smooth. Beat in one egg and 1 teaspoon of the vanilla until they are combined. Set it aside.

In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the butter and remaining 1 1/2 cups of sugar until they are combined. Beat in the remaining 3 eggs, one at a time. Beat in the remaining 2 teaspoons of vanilla. Mix in the melted chocolate. On low speed, beat in the flour and salt until the are just combined.

Scrape all but 1 cup of the chocolate batter into the prepared pan and smooth it out evenly. Spread the cream cheese mixture evenly over the chocolate mixture. Spoon the remaining chocolate mixture over the cream cheese mixture. Pull a table knife through the layers of batter with a light lifting motion in a zigzag pattern to create a marbleized look.

Bake for 50 minutes.

Set the pan on a wire rack and cool the brownies in the pan. When the brownies are completely cool, remove them using the aluminum foil handles.

Cut the brownies into squares. (You can refrigerate them first for ease of cutting. Wetting your knife also helps give you a clean cut.)

Yield: 16 brownies