Pumpkin Brownies {with ganache}

Oh boy. It’s that time of year already. Food, family, shopping, crazy filled grocery stores, decorating, baking, then eating a ton. Personally, I love it. I love the excitement in peoples eyes…except for those who are crazy shoppers getting the ‘deals’. They scare me. (Random note, that’s why I avoid black friday and only check things out online. )

So anyways, back to this scrumptious dessert everyone should try making. That is, if you enjoy chocolate, pumpkin, and more chocolate. Sometimes, you just have to indulge…Follow this awesome blog, My Baking Addiction. AHHHmazing recipes on here. Since it is November, I always like to bake with pumpkin somehow. I first saw the pictures, and then I read the ingredients and had to try this. Hopefully you will too!

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Pumpkin Brownies

Yield: 12 brownies          Prep Time: 20 minutes        Cook time: 30-35 minutes

Ingredients:

4 ounces unsweetened chocolate; coarsely chopped
3/4 cup unsalted butter, cut into cubes
1 1/4 cups sugar
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup Gold Medal all-purpose flour

For the Pumpkin Swirl

4 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

For the Ganache

4 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup heavy cream

DIRECTIONS:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line an 8×8 inch baking pan with foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray.

2. Microwave chocolate and butter in a large microwave-safe bowl at medium (50% power) for 3-4 minutes or until butter is melted. While the chocolate is melting, prepare the pumpkin layer. In a medium bowl, combine cream cheese, pumpkin puree, sugar, pumpkin pie spice and vanilla. Beat with an electric mixer well combined and smooth. Set aside.

3. Once the butter is melted, remove the bowl from the microwave and stir until chocolate is melted. Whisk in sugar, eggs, vanilla and salt. Gradually add in flour; stir until just combined.

4. Spread 3/4 the batter into prepared pan. Spoon pumpkin filling by tablespoonfuls evenly over batter. Spoon remaining brownie batter over filling. Use a knife or wooden skewer to cut through the batter several times in different directions to create a swirled pattern. Bake in preheated oven for 30-35 minutes – do not overbake

5. Remove to cooling rack to cool completely. Before serving, prepare the ganache.

6. To make the ganache, pour the chopped chocolate into a medium mixing bowl, set aside. Pour the heavy cream into a microwave safe measuring cup (Pyrex) and microwave on high for about 1 minute or until bubbles begin to form on the surface. Take care to not overheat because the cream will boil over. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate and allow it to sit for about 3 minutes. Use a small whisk to combine the mixture into a smooth chocolate glaze. Spoon the ganache over the brownies.

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Sourced from: My Baking Addiction 

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Chocolate Raspberry Truffle Cake

Hope you all had a fantastic Thanksgiving! I know I sure did…I just can’t believe it is over. So not only did we celebrate Thanksgiving, my dear husband had a birthday celebration that day as well…lucky him. He got the best birthday dinner e.v.e.r.! So I wanted to try something new for once, like make my own cake new. I love this blog I follow. It has ahhhmazing food. Check it out, ANNIE EATS. Such yummy food in those recipes of hers.

So I saw this and I had to make it. The chocolate raspberry truffle cake…my drizzle did not work as planned but hey, first time I felt I did pretty dang well! Here is the delicious recipe I got off of her website. Hope you all will make it, it was to DIE for! Raspberry filling, chocolate ganache filling and yummy chocolate cake with one of my favorites…BUTTERCREAM FROSTING!

For the cake:

1 1/2 c. (4 1/2 oz.) unsweetened cocoa powder

1 1/2 c. boiling water

3/4 c. sour cream

1 TBL. Vanilla extract

3 sticks (12 oz.) unsalted butter, at room temperature

2 1/2 c. + 2 TBL. ( 18 1/4 oz.) sugar

3 large eggs

1 3/4 c. + 2 TBL (9 1/4 oz.) all-purpose flour

1 1/4 tsp. baking soda

3/4 tsp. salt

For the raspberry filling:

16 oz. frozen raspberries, thawed

1/3 c. sugar

3 TBL. cornstarch

1 tsp. lemon juice

For the ganache filling:

8 oz. bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped

1 c. heavy cream

3 TBL. unsalted butter, at room temperature

Raspberry frosting:

1 c. sugar

4 larger egg whites

21 TBL. unsalted butter, at room temperature (that’s right 21 TABLESPOONS)

1/3 c. strained raspberry puree

1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

Pink gel icing color (optional)

Chocolate glaze:

4 oz. bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped

1/2 c. heavy cream

1/4 c. light corn syrup

2 tsp. vanilla extract

Directions:
To make the cake, preheat the oven to 350˚ F. Grease and flour the edges of three 9-inch round cake pans, and line the bottoms with rounds of parchment paper. Combine the cocoa and espresso powder in a small bowl. Add in the boiling water and whisk together until smooth. Let cool slightly. Whisk in the sour cream.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the butter and sugar. Beat together on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Blend in the eggs one at a time, scraping down the bowl as needed. Beat in the vanilla. Combine the flour, baking soda and salt in a small bowl; stir together to combine. With the mixer on low speed, add the dry ingredients to the mixing bowl in three additions, alternating with the cocoa-sour cream mixture, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients. Beat each addition just until incorporated.

Divide the batter between the prepared baking pans. Bake 35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cool in the pans about 15 minutes, then transfer the cakes to a wire rack to cool completely.

To make the raspberry filling, drain the thawed berries, reserving the juice in a liquid measuring cup. Add enough water so that the total liquid equals 1¼ cups. Add the liquid to a medium saucepan with the sugar and cornstarch. Heat over medium-high heat, whisking occasionally, until the mixture begins to bubble and thicken. Continue whisking so no lumps form. Once thickened, remove from the heat and whisk in the lemon juice. Fold in the drained berries with a spatula. Cover and chill until ready to use. (The filling will continue to thicken as it chills.)

To make the ganache, place the chopped chocolate in a heatproof bowl. Heat the cream in a saucepan and bring to a simmer. Immediately remove from the heat and pour the hot cream over the chopped chocolate. Let stand 1-2 minutes, then whisk together until a smooth, thick ganache is formed. Whisk in the butter 1 tablespoon at a time until completely incorporated. Let the ganache sit to thicken a bit so that it is suitable for spreading and piping. (To speed thickening, place the bowl in the fridge or freezer and whisk every 10 minutes to ensure even cooling until the desired consistency is reached.) Transfer about ½ cup of the thickened ganache to a pastry bag fitted with a plain round tip about ½-inch in diameter. Reserve another ½ cup of ganache in a small bowl or container. (This can be used later for decorative detailing, if desired.)

To assemble the cake, place one of the cooled cake layers on a cake board or serving platter. Spread ½ cup of the ganache in an even layer over the cake. Using the reserved ganache in the pastry bag, pipe a border around the perimeter of the cake layer. This will act as a well to help hold in the raspberry filling. Spoon some of the raspberry filling inside the ganache border in an even layer. Top with another layer of cake and repeat this process, layering with another ½ cup of ganache and additional raspberry filling. Top with the remaining cake layer.

To make the raspberry frosting, combine the sugar and egg whites in a heatproof bowl set over a pot of simmering water.(I use my mixer bowl here to dirty one less dish.) Heat, whisking frequently, until the mixture reaches 160° F and the sugar has dissolved. Transfer the mixture to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Beat on medium-high speed until stiff peaks form and the mixture has cooled to room temperature, about 8 minutes. (The bowl should be cool to the touch.) Reduce the speed to medium and add the butter, 2 tablespoons at a time, adding more once each addition has been incorporated. If the frosting looks soupy or curdled, continue to beat on medium-high speed until thick and smooth again, about 3-5 minutes more (or longer – don’t worry, it will come together!) Blend in the raspberry puree and vanilla until smooth and completely incorporated, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. If desired, tint with pink icing gel to achieve your desired shade.

Frost the top and sides of the assembled cake with the raspberry buttercream, smoothing the surface as much as possible. Chill for at least 30 minutes.

To make the chocolate glaze, place the chocolate in a medium bowl. Heat the cream in a small saucepan over medium heat until simmering. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate and let sit 1-2 minutes. Whisk until the mixture is smooth and homogenous. Blend in the corn syrup and vanilla. Pour the glaze into a pitcher or measuring cup and let cool for 10 minutes. (Do not let the glaze cool longer or it may become difficult to pour over the cake.) Slowly pour the glaze over the cake, ensuring that the top is covered and the glaze drips over the sides. Let the glaze set about 5-10 minutes. Meanwhile, bring the remaining reserved ganache to a consistency for piping. (You can microwave in 5 second intervals on low power – it won’t take long to rewarm. If you overshoot and the ganache becomes too thin, simply chill again in the fridge or freezer until it is thick enough to pipe.) Transfer the ganache to a pastry bag fitted with a decorative tip. Pipe swirls of ganache around the edge of the top of the cake and top each swirl with a fresh raspberry. Chill the cake until ready to serve.