For Mia's birthday I baked a dessert that I've been meaning to try for a long time - chocolate brownie cheesecake! The recipe comes from my brother who has impressed me with it in the past. It does take quite a few ingredients, but I found it pretty easy to make (and I had never made a cheesecake before).
The cheesecake works best if you make it the day before and refrigerate overnight, so it's great if you are making it for an occasion where you want to prep as much as you can in advance. The brownie base can also be used to make standalone brownies, in fact I used this brownie recipe for my delicious cookie and brownie petit fours.
130g dark chocolate, roughly chopped
130g unsalted butter
170g icing sugar
75g plain flour
400g cream cheese (I used full fat Philadelphia)
150g icing sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Start by making the brownie base. Melt the chocolate in a bowl. In a separate bowl, cream the butter and sugar together then beat in the eggs. Mix in the flour and the melted chocolate until you have a smooth mixture, then pour into a circular baking tray (mine measures 26cm in diameter which is about the minimum size I'd recommend using, but you could easily use one a few centimetres larger).
As I had the oven on anyway, I placed the brownie base into the oven (180C) for about five minutes just to make it a little firmer before putting on the topping.
Then make the cheesecake topping. Cream together the cream cheese and icing sugar then mix in the eggs. Spoon the mixture on top of the brownie base, making sure that it is spread evenly across. Smooth over with a knife. Bake in a pre-heated oven at 180C until the top has browned slightly and it is golden around the edges. I found that it took about 45 minutes. Leave to cool completely, then refrigerate overnight.