Mascarpone Brownies

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Yield: about 16 to 20 small brownies

Okay so it probably goes without saying that ANYTHING with mascarpone as an ingredient is going to be good, but these…these are something else.  These are the most moist, rich brownies I’ve ever had.  Basically, this is brownie fudge.  These probably don’t need frosting, but we’ve already thrown caution to the wind so go ahead and do it.

 

BROWNIES:

1 cup butter

3 ounces high-quality semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped

1 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup cocoa powder

1/2 cup mascarpone cheese, softened

3 large eggs, at room temperature

1 teaspoon espresso powder

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon salt

CHOCOLATE MASCARPONE FROSTING:

4 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature

4 ounces mascarpone cheese, at room temperature

1/4 cup butter

2 to 2-1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar, depending on your taste

1/2 cup cocoa powder

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

 

Preheat the oven to 325°.  Cut two large strips of parchment to fit into an 8-inch square glass pan, allowing enough to overhang the pan and provide “handles” for you to remove the brownies.  Spray with nonstick cooking spray.

 

In a small microwave-safe bowl, add the chocolate and butter.  Microwave for 30 seconds and stir.  Continue to heat in 15-second intervals, stirring after each heating, until the butter and chocolate have just melted.  It should take about 1 minute.

 

Sift the sugar and cocoa powder together into a large bowl.  Add the melted chocolate mixture and stir to combine.  Add the mascarpone, eggs, espresso powder and vanilla extract and stir to combine.  Add the flour and salt, and gently fold to combine.  Pour the batter into the prepared pan.  Bake for 40 to 50 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with a few crumbs.  Cool in the pan for 15 minutes and remove using the parchment handles onto a cutting board.  Allow to cool completely.  I know it’s tempting to eat warm brownies, but these are so moist that they really need to cool completely.

 

To make the frosting, combine the cream and mascarpone cheeses and butter in a mixing bowl and beat to combine.  Mix in the powdered sugar, one cup at a time, until smooth and creamy.  Add the cocoa powder and vanilla extract and mix one more time to thoroughly combine.  Add more powdered sugar, if desired, to reach your preferred sweetness and consistency.  Spread on the cooled brownies and cut into small squares to serve.

 

Inspiration: Chocolate Mascarpone Brownies on food.com

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