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Try this perfect match: brownies and cheesecake



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A Brownie Bits Cheesecake combines two favorite flavors. (click for larger version)
August 22, 2012 - Can't decide what to make for dessert?

Why not try two fabulous favorites in one with a Brownie Bits Cheesecake — what's not to love when a chocolaty brownie serves as a classic cheesecake's crust, stir-in and topping?

Start with a packaged brownie mix to save time when making the brownie crust and stir-ins. Once baked and cooled, the brownie "crust" is covered with a creamy cheesecake batter — but better, because it's filled and topped with decadent brownie bits.

Brownie Bits Cheesecake

Crust

2 packages (about 16 ounces each) brownie mix (8-in.-square size)

Eggs, water and oil to prepare mixes

Filling

3 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened

1 cup granulated sugar

3⁄4 cup sour cream

6 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1⁄4 teaspoon almond extract

Preheat oven to 350 F. Spray 9-inch springform pan and 8-inch-by-2-inch square pan with vegetable pan spray.

In large bowl, prepare one brownie mix following package instructions. Spread into bottom of prepared square pan. Prepare remaining brownie mix following package instructions. Spread into prepared springform pan. Bake both pans together for 35 to 40 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool completely. Turn oven down to 325 F.

Cut roughly half of the brownies from the square pan into 3⁄4-inch pieces (about 1 1⁄2 cups); set aside. Reserve remaining brownie for snacking.

For filling, beat cream cheese and sugar with electric mixer at medium speed in large bowl until smooth and creamy, about 5 to 10 minutes. Beat in sour cream and eggs. Add vanilla and almond ex­tracts. When filling is smooth, gently stir in 1⁄2 cup of the cut brownies. Pour over cooled crust. Sprinkle re­maining 1 cup cut brownies over cheesecake batter; lightly press into batter. Place cheesecake in middle of oven. Fill a large pan with hot water and place on rack underneath cheesecake.

Bake 1 hour, 25 minutes or until cheesecake is firm on top but mixture still is jiggly when gently shaken. Turn off oven; leave cheesecake in closed oven 30 minutes to cool down slowly. Remove cheesecake from oven and cool on cooling grid 1 hour. Refrigerate covered at least 4 hours or overnight.

Makes about 12 servings.

This delicious dessert duo serves a crowd, making it just right for entertaining or for any family celebration. Since it's made ahead of time and chilled, there's less time spent in the kitchen and more time enjoying the festivities.


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