As I’ve mentioned once or twice before, we recently moved into a new apartment and have slooowly gone about the process of unpacking / organizing / making things more cozy. The wall space is off-white in color and extremely abundant. If our walls could talk, they’d say, “make us look pretty!” And so, having heard my bare walls’ cries, I have been spending a large portion of my free time decorating canvases to dress the walls and make the space uniquely our own. These are two easy and inexpensive canvas crafts I’ve put together over past weekends. I love the way they turned out! And I loved the process of making them even more. If you curious, here are the links to the tutorials I used to make these: You Me Oui wall art & You’re My Best Friend wall art. And of course, I’ve roped Dylan into the crafting craze as well! He’s helped me make an extra-large chalkboard for our living room. I’ve been using it to write out menus and to-do lists. Ah, an organization tool that doubles as wall art! It’s made me happy :) And now, I have a ton of ideas rounded up to work on for months to come.
As far as kitchen crafting goes, I’ve got a few new cooking experiences under my belt. One Sunday dinner, Dylan and I went out on a limb and attempted to make goat for dinner. In searching for a recipe, I learned that goat meat is the most commonly consumed meat in the world. Who knew! Not I. That was the first new thing I learned that day. The second new thing? Goat meat is tasty, easy to cook, and nothing to be intimated by! We braised some goat shanks in a French oven with carrots, onions, rosemary, and a few other simple ingredients, set the pot in the oven, came back some time later, and were rewarded with delicious, fall-off-the-bone tender meat. My second experiment was my first attempt at homemade soup. I opted to try a butternut squash soup with apples, maple, and goat cheese. The results were a pleasant surprise, and marked a successful first attempt at soup-making. And last but not least, raspberry cream cheese brownies – the namesake of this post. I’ve been wanting to try making these for quite some time, and I’m so glad I finally did, because they were fantastic. A fudge brownie base, topped with a decadent cream cheese filling, marbled together and studded with fresh raspberries… What a treat! Raspberries sit at the top of my list of fruity favorites. As I’ve mentioned before on the blog, raspberries taste like childhood to me, and anything that brings back the joys of childhood is very special to me. If raspberries are special to you, too, then I hope you’ll try making these soon :)
raspberry cream cheese brownies
adapted from david lebovitz
for the brownie layer:
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pieces
- 4 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped
- 2/3 cup sugar
- 2 eggs, at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup flour
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/2 cup chocolate chips
for the cream cheese layer:
- 8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
- 1 large egg yolk
- 5 tablespoons sugar
- 1/8 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1-2 handfulls fresh raspberries, rinsed
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 9-by-9-inch square pan with foil or parchment paper. Mist with nonstick spray or grease lightly.
In a mixing bowl set over a pot of simmering water, melt the butter and chocolate. Remove bowl from heat. Beat in the sugar, followed by the eggs and vanilla. Mix until batter looks smooth and glossy. Mix in the flour, salt, and cocoa powder. Fold in the chocolate chips. Spread the batter into the prepared pan.
In a separate bowl, beat together the cream cheese, egg yolk, sugar, and vanilla until smooth.
Distribute the cream cheese mixture in eight dollops across the top of the brownie mixture, then take a dull knife or spatula and swirl the cream cheese mixture with the chocolate batter. Scatter raspberries evenly on top of the batter, gently pressing them onto the surface.
Bake for 35-45 minutes, or until the batter in the center of the pan feels just set (mine took 40 minutes). Let cool, then lift out the foil/parchment paper and peel it away. Cut the brownies into squares. They taste equally great at room temperature or refrigerated.