King Arthur Flour takes their favorite Fudge Brownie recipe to a fun, spooky level with the addition of a mint-flavored cream cheese spiderweb for Halloween. The result is a brownie that’s right in the middle of the fudgy vs. cakey debate – ultra-moist texture with a subtle cake-like rise. Your ghosts and goblins of all ages will be thrilled!
4 large eggs
1 1/4 cups Double-Dutch Dark Cocoa or Dutch-process cocoa
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon espresso powder
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
2 1/4 cups sugar
1 1/2 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
2 cups chocolate chips
4 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
1 large egg yolk
1/2 teaspoon mint flavoring (optional)
Lightly grease a 9″ x 13″ pan or two 8″ round pans. Crack the 4 eggs into a bowl, and beat them at medium speed with the cocoa, salt, baking powder, espresso powder, and vanilla for about 4 minutes. You can do this while you’re melting your butter (next step). In a medium-sized microwave-safe bowl, or in a saucepan set over low heat, melt the butter, then add the sugar and stir to combine. Or simply combine the butter and sugar, and heat, stirring, until the butter is melted. Continue to heat (or microwave) briefly, just until the mixture is hot (about 110°F to 120°F), but not bubbling; it’ll become shiny looking as you stir it. Heating the mixture to this point will dissolve more of the sugar, which will help produce a shiny top crust on your brownies. Add the hot butter/sugar mixture to the egg/cocoa mixture, stirring until smooth. Add the flour and chips, stirring until smooth. Again, adding the chips helps produce a shiny top crust. Spread the batter in a lightly greased 9″ x 13″ pan, or two 8″ round pans. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
Combine the cream cheese, sugar and flour in a small bowl, and mix until smooth. Add the egg yolk and flavoring (if using), mixing until smooth once again. Transfer the mixture to a disposable pastry bag, and cut just the very tip off the end. Place a small pool of the mixture in the center of the brownie batter. Draw circles around this pool about 1″ apart, moving out from the center each time. Once the circles are drawn, take a table knife, wet the tip, and draw it back and forth through the circles. The knife will draw the cream cheese filling into arcs. Use any remaining filling to trace the path where the knife traveled, to create the spokes of the web. Bake the brownies for 30 minutes, until the brownies just barely pull away from the edge of the pan. The center will rise while baking, but will sink back level once the brownies are cool. Remove them from the oven and cool before cutting and serving.