Wednesday, June 30, 2010

The Betty Crocker Project : The Cream Cheese Brownie Pie

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I keep starting and deleting blog posts on the following topics:
  • Why I'm happy Dan isn't a vampire. Vampire/human romantic relationships always seem so dramatic and dysfunctional.
  • How robots are cool because they're vegan, but how a misplaced affection for them may someday lead to our destruction in a robo-apocalypse.
  • What superheroes I suspect would go vegan if there were a way to get these brownies into the Marvel Universe; but Dan already wrote something like that like a billion years ago.
  • How every vegan has their own favorite brownie recipe that they think is the second coming, and how they're all pretty good in different ways. In fact, I can't remember the last time I had a bad vegan brownie.
  • Why I think my cats are Russian Spies.
But none of them ever really come together. I mean, in theory they made me giggle--and I am sincerely glad Dan isn't a vampire--but I think instead I'll stick to the subject. These brownies are pretty good if you like a dark chocolatey fudgey chewy brownie, but if you have your own favorite vegan brownie you can always substitute it, because the real star of this recipe is the cream cheesecake layer. I drizzled some of the caramel sauce from the Caramel Sticky Rolls over them, because that's how we roll around here. Of course, I've heard from some of you that you prefer the caramel sauce on the Turtle Cheesecake... so follow your heart. I won't judge.

OK - let's do this.

The Cream Cheese Brownie Pie
Cream Cheese Layer:
  • 1 Cup Margarine (you'll need more for greasing the pan dish)
  • 4 oz Unsweetened Baking Chocolate
  • 1 1/2 Cups Sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons Agave Nectar
  • 2 Teaspoons Vanilla
  • 3 Eggs worth of Ener-G Egg Replacer (made with Soy Milk instead of water per instructions)
  • 1 Tablespoon Applesauce
  • 1 1/2 Cups Flour
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Salt
  • 1/2 Cup Walnuts

Heat oven to 350.

Grease a 9 inch glass pie plate/dish/pan with Margarine. Make sure you get all the corners with a heavy layer.

In a bowl, beat all the Cream Cheese Layer ingredients with a hand held mixers until smooth.

In a saucepan, melt Margarine and Baking Chocolate over a low heat until completely melted. Stir frequently until smooth.

In a large bowl, mix Chocolate Mix, Sugar, Agave Nectar, Vanilla, Egg Replacer and Applesauce with a hand mixer. Once blended, mix in Flour. Beat at medium speed for over a minute. Mix in Walnuts. This is mix is going to be thick, not watery, so if it's more gummy or pasty - that's cool.

Spread the Brownie Mix into the pie dish. Push it into the pie dish until it fills the bottom. Pour the Cream Cheese layer over the top. With a knife make a crisscross pattern over the top - like so.

Bake for 45-50 minutes, until the top is a golden brown and you can remove a toothpick cleanly.

Feeling like you deserve an extra treat? Top with the vegan caramel sauce from the Turtle Cheesecake or, in my opinion, the superior caramel sauce from the Caramel Sticky Rolls. The extra stickiness will complement the richness of this desert. Trust me.


  1. Sounds great for a Shabbat lunch. I'll try is soon, maybe this week. However, as a dedicated vegan I'll skip the part where you "meat"(sic) the
    cream cheese layer and "beat" instead.

    [Could this be a Freudian slip? Will we wake up one day to find The Shannons carnalizing vegan recipes? :)]

  2. Don't you love spell check! Seriously this thing is constantly replacing any misspelled version of "from" into "form" and the other day it turned and typo in "cheese" into "chest" - as in "spreading chest"... :P

  3. This really could be the second coming of brownies. Fo' real this looks out of control and out of the park.

  4. Is it wrong to be turned on while reading this?! Seriously going to whip this up this weekend! :o)

  5. Annie was kind enough to pass along a generous slice of this pie and it was delicious! My boyfriend also said that the pie was prettier than me...should I be concerned?!

  6. I made this recipe the other night and mine never really worked out. I dont know what went wrong, when i tasted the batter (yep admitted spoon licker here!) it was awesome and i was so excited to have legendary brownies. But then they never really formed up, the were just a melty pile even after backing them for an hour and 20 minutes. i feel like there may be too much earth balance because that was the taste that was the most noticeable. i do agree though that the cream cheese layer is the star. perhaps i will just find a different brownie to be the basis! anyways, i love you sight! thanks for being so culinarily inspiring!