Tuesday, 4 September 2007

Cream Cheese Brownies

What's not to like? - Nigella Lawson

The verdict:
There's nothing to like about this recipe, except for one thing. The way the recipe is written is intriguing.

Nigella writes, in the instructions on how to melt the chocolate and butter, that you can leave it on the stove without heat for a while before it's finished melting because it will continue to 'deliquesce' if left. Gee, thanks Nigella. You help me enhance my vocabulary, even when your recipes suck.

There will be no photos for this post. What you'll get is essentially a rant. If anyone else has made these with success, speak up! So far, my test audience of one (George) agrees with me. Nigella let us down on this one.

Unusual or substituted ingredients: Cream cheese. I thought it sounded weird to put cream cheese cubes in the mixture, but I must have liked the idea at least a little or I wouldn't have ventured down this track. Basically you cut up fridge cold cream cheese and plonk the cubes into the part-poured mixture, before covering it over with the remaining mixture. It's supposed to be like a chocolate cheesecake.

Special utensils or cookware: None.

Repeatability: Never. I was making these for an afternoon tea at George's house and I had to turn up empty handed because they failed abysmally. Why did they fail? First of all, she says to cook them for 20 minutes. The mixture has hardly warmed up in that time. Forty minutes later I really had to get them out of the oven so I could let them cool before I went out and they still weren't set.

I let them cool totally and inside, they were still runny. The cream cheese was the problem, I think. Nigella says to use 200g of cheese but once I'd put about 50g worth of cubes in the mixture, there was no room left so I think it was overcrowded and seriously impeded the cooking process.

Sauciness: Zero. I was just angry. We threw the lot out.

Overall pleasure level: I got no pleasure from this recipe at all! I felt like less of a failure though when George declared it hadn't worked for her either.

If anyone else wants to have a go to give this recipe a chance in perhaps more competent hands, go right ahead. If you don't have the book, I'll send you the recipe. Let's get a challenge happening!

Oh and the reason there are no photos is that I was in rather a rush and forgot to take any during the making of them. By the time they were supposedly done, I was so disgusted I wanted to remove all evidence of them.

These get a big fat zero out of ten from me. Nice idea, pity about the result.