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Cheesecake

The name of this cheesecake is completely appropriate, and one of the best (if not the best) cheesecakes I have made. It’s a chocolate triple threat: oreo base, thick rich chocolate cheesecake topped with decadent ganache. Just talking about it makes me want to make it again.

It took me 4 hours to get through one piece…

Chocolate Lover’s Cheesecake

(from annies-eats.com)

yields at least 16 pieces

Ingredients

For the crust:
1½ cups finely ground chocolate cookie crumbs*
3 tbsp. sugar
4 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted

For the cheesecake: 
½ cup sour cream
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. espresso powder or instant coffee granules
8 oz. bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
3 (8 oz.) packages cream cheese, at room temperature
3 tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
¼ tsp. salt
1¼ cups sugar
3 large eggs, at room temperature

For the glaze: 
3 oz. bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
6 tbsp. heavy cream
1 tbsp. unsalted butter, at room temperature

*Most recipes call for Nabisco Famous Chocolate Wafers but I can never find them.   I generally use Oreos and scrape off the cream filling.  

Directions

  • To make the crust, preheat the oven to 400˚ F.  Line the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan with a round of parchment paper.  In a medium bowl combine the cookie crumbs, sugar, and melted butter.  Stir with a fork until all the crumbs are moistened.  Add the crumb mixture to the springform pan and gently press about 1 inch up the sides of the pan.  Press the rest of the crumbs into an even layer over the bottom of the pan.  Bake for 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool.  Reduce the oven temperature to 300˚ F.
  • To make the filling, combine the sour cream, vanilla, and espresso powder in a small bowl.  Whisk to blend and set aside.  Melt the chocolate in a double boiler or in the microwave (in short intervals, stirring frequently) until completely smooth.  Set aside and let cool slightly.
  • In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the cream cheese, cocoa powder, and salt.  Beat on medium-high speed until smooth and fluffy, about 2 minutes.  Beat in the sugar and continue mixing about 2-3 minutes more, scraping down the bowl as needed.  Add the cooled chocolate to the bowl and mix on medium-low speed.  Beat in the sour cream mixture just until evenly blended.  Beat in the eggs one at a time, mixing each just until incorporated.  (Don’t over-beat once the eggs are added or the cheesecake will puff too much.)
  • Pour the filling into the cooled crust.  Bake until the center jiggles very slightly when nudged, about 50-60 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool for 1-2 hours.  Then cover and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled, at least 8 hours or overnight.  (In my opinion, the greatest disservice you can do your cheesecake is not chilling it long enough.  Always let it chill completely through.  I promise, it will be worth the wait!)
  • To make the glaze, place the chopped chocolate in a small heatproof bowl.  Bring the cream to a simmer in a small saucepan or in the microwave.  Pour over the chocolate and let stand briefly, 1-2 minutes.  Whisk just until a smooth ganache has formed.  Whisk in the butter until completely incorporated.  Pour the glaze in an even layer over the chilled cheesecake.  Chill thoroughly.
  • To serve, carefully unmold the sides of the springform.  Run a sharp knife under hot water to warm the blade, and wipe dry with a towel.  Slice cleanly, wiping the blade between slices and reheating as necessary.  Serve chilled.

My last memory of a good ol’ fair was The Hoppings in my dear hometown of Newcastle. A not so classy affair, but an unmistakeable guilty pleasure. The fried food, the rigged games and baffingly unsafe rides. *sigh* seems like fairs have the same redeeming qualities no matter where they are in the world. The Capital Ex fair in Edmonton’s Northlands Park was everything I was expecting it to be. The large expo halls had stalls for EVERYTHING. For firefighters, butterflies, trout fishing… My favourite though, the candy exhibition!

The old chocolate boxes were a favourite and was the immense PEZ collection!

I was dumbfounded by how fried and overpriced all of the food was. I know that’s the point when you go to a fair, eat bad food but have a good time.. but eeesh – I just couldn’t bring myself to do it…

Yes, you read that right. DEEP FRIED CHEESECAKE. Take the most unhealthy dessert, then multiply that by 100 more heartattacks.. That’s what they’re offering to you. And the fun did not stop there! For $40.00 you can take on the challenge of…

Words cannot describe the beauty of such a burger, and the faces of those half way through, slumping in their chairs…

On the whole, an awesome experience of culinary debauchery. And having Metric and a thunderstorm top off the night… perfection.

Let’s keep on with the cheesecake party!  I have a long list that I’m working through.

This one is courtesy of Nigella Lawson. It is deep chocolate heaven. And cheesecake for breakfast is the right start to the day.

Chocolate Cheesecake

Cheesecake base:

  • 1 1/3 cups graham cracker crumbs
  • 1/2 stick butter
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa

Cheesecake filling:

  • 6 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped small
  • 2 1/2 cups cream cheese
  • 3/4 cup superfine sugar
  • 1 tablespoon custard powder
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • 2/3 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon cocoa, dissolved in 1 tablespoon hot water

Sauce:

  • 3 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon dark corn syrup
  • Special equipment: 9-inch springform pan

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

  2. To make the base, process the graham crackers to make rough crumbs and then add the butter and cocoa. Process again until it makes damp, clumping crumbs and then tip them into the pan. Press the crumbs into the bottom of the pan to make an even base and put into the freezer while you make the filling.

  3. Put a kettle on to boil.

  4. Melt the chocolate either in a microwave or double boiler, and set aside to cool slightly.

  5. Beat the cream cheese to soften it, then add the sugar and custard power, beating again to combine. Beat in the whole eggs and then the yolks, and the sour cream. Finally add the cocoa dissolved in hot water and melted chocolate and mix to a smooth batter.

  6. Take the springform tin out of the freezer and line the outside of the tin with a good layer of cling wrap, and then another layer of strong foil over that. This will protect it from the water bath.

  7. Sit the springform tin in a roasting pan and pour in the cheesecake filling. Fill the roasting pan with just boiled water to come about half way up the cake tin and bake in the oven for 45 minutes to 1 hour. The top of the cheesecake should be set, but the underneath should still have a wobble to it.

  8. Peel away the foil and cling film wrapping and sit the cheesecake in its tin on a rack to cool. Put in the refrigerator once it is no longer hot, and leave to set, covered with plastic overnight. Let it lose its chill before unspringing the cheesecake to serve.

  9. To make the chocolate sauce: very gently melt the chopped chocolate, cream and syrup. When the chocolate has nearly melted, take off the heat and whisk it to a smooth sauce. Let it cool a little, and pour it over the chocolate cheesecake on its serving plate.

INGREDIENTS
FOR THE BASE
125g digestive biscuits
60g butter
1 tablespoon cocoa
FOR THE FILLING
175g dark chocolate, chopped small
500g Philadelphia cream cheese
150g caster sugar
1 tablespoon Bird’s custard powder
3 large eggs
3 large egg yolks
150ml sour cream (or just use a 142ml pot)
1/2 teaspoon cocoa, dissolved in 1 tablespoon hot water
FOR THE GLAZE (OPTIONAL)
75g dark chocolate, finely chopped
125ml double cream
1 teaspoon golden syrup

Serving Size : Makes 10–12 slices

A cheesecake? A cake full of cheese? Is this madness? Sort of. How have I NOT baked a cheesecake on this blog?! I even got to make a new category for this post!

I am now obsessed with cheesecake, since it’s been over a year since I last baked one, I now am devouring every recipe I can get my greedy eyes on.

This recipe has the best of the classic cheesecake and a dark, rich chocolate swirl mmm.


Marbled Cheesecake

from (bakingbites.com)

  • 2 cups graham crackers, crushed into crumbs
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 2-8 oz. packages of cream cheese, softened
  • 1-14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
  • 3 eggs, room temperature
  • 4 oz bittersweet/semisweet chocolate
  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. Mix together graham cracker crumbs, sugar and melted butter until mixture is wet (or pulse in a food processor until crumbs clump together) and begins to stick together. Spread mixture evenly in a 9 inch springform pan and press down firmly. Bake for 10 minutes. Set aside.
  3. Reduce oven temperature to 300F.
  4. Melt chocolate into a medium sized bowl.
  5. In a large bowl, beat cream cheese until smooth. Add condensed milk and beat until smooth. Add eggs, one by one, beating each until fully incorporated. Pour 1/2 of the batter into the bowl with the melted chocolate and stir well. Pour chocolate and plain batters into the prepared pan, evenly distributing and alternating batters. Swirl with a clean knife.
  6. Bake cheesecake for 50-55 minutes. It will not look totally firm when done; it will jiggle. The whole cake should jiggle evenly, though the center might be a bit looser.
  7. Cool cheesecake at room temperature for at least 1 hour before refrigerating. Refrigerate overnight or at least 4 hours.
  8. Store in refrigerator until ready to serve.

Serves 12 very hungry, calorie oblivious persons.