cheesecakes


I know I have said it before. Cheesecake is my favorite dessert. Ever! The creamy concoction of cream cheese, flour, eggs with various and sundry other ingredients depending on whose recipe you use. I have my faves – Junior’s is always good. AB has a good one. And I have one I found EONS ago that has become my go to. Dorie’s is also good. I haven’t found a cheesecake yet I don’t care for. This weeks Tuesday with Dorie/Baking With Julia recipe was a cheesecake with an ingredient I have not used before – Mascarpone Cheese. It is not something I buy very often. Not unless I have a recipe that actually calls for it. I had a potato recipe that called for 2TBL so when I bought it I knew eventually I would use the rest. So thank you BwJ for this weeks cheesecake.

I usually make 1/2 or 1/4 of baking recipes these days because with just the two of us we don’t need a lot of sweets. But we were going to friend’s for dinner so I made the full recipe. Instead of one cake I made 12 bite-sized and a 4″. Perfect!

P1030699

While good, it wasn’t my fave. And it rose so much it just about overflowed all my pans.

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You can see it cracked. A lot! So no party for this cake.

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The recipe called for all the chocolate to completely mixed into the batter until no white showed, but I like a swirled cheesecake so I only mixed it some. It didn’t affect the taste, just how it looked.

I don’t think I will make this one again. But visit with the other Doristas and see how they liked it.

The recipe is on page 256 of Dorie’s Baking with Julia and was contributed to the book by David Ogonowski

If I had to only have one dessert ever again it would be cheesecake. It is what I get out most often as not if they have it. Any kind of cheesecake. Any flavor is fine. Just as long as it’s cheesecake. So, when I needed to pick a cake to ‘host’ for Modern Baker Challenge I chose the……

    and I am glad I did.

They are adaptable to just about any flavor. You don’t feel bad about eating a whole one (especially if you make them sugar-free) and there is plenty of room in the fridge to store them easily. I made these back in August but completely failed to take enough pictures for ‘hosting’ so I was FORCED to go back and make them again. Yes, twist my arm!! The full recipe will yield 8 – 10 individual cheesecakes depending on the size of your ramekins. Mine were 3″ and 1/2 of the recipe resulted in 3 nice sized cheesecakes.

Nick’s cheesecakes are super easy with only 5 ingredients

    super quick as well.

Cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla are mixed up first. Then the eggs go in one at a time. Add the sour cream and you are done!

Just spoon the batter into the molds and bake about 25 minutes.

Easy!! Quick!! Delicious.

Malgieri suggested serving them with berries so the first time I made them I served them with a blueberry coulis,

but this time I drizzled them with caramel sauce.

I beat the batter more than Malgieri suggested and ended up with a lighter less dense cheesecake which we really enjoyed. And since I used Splenda instead of sugar I didn’t feel quite as guilty about eating A WHOLE CHEESECAKE after dinner.

You can find the recipe on page 264 of Nick Malgieri’s the Modern Baker. We are in the last section for this book, cakes, but there is still time to join in. Just visit The Modern Baker Challenge and bake along. We will finish the end of December. And then, well who knows!!!

Back in June Phyl sent out a notice that he was doing an Ice Cream Week “right smack in the Dog Days of Summer“. Lots of us said we would join in and then promptly several of us forgot. Well, I did, anyway!! Thankfully I was reminded on Twitter that the Ice Cream Week was fast approaching so Into the kitchen I went. I wanted to make some different ice creams than I had before so after some lengthy research I came up with some new recipes. Some of them are mine, some adapted, some straight from other bloggers.

The first Ice Cream up was labeled as Summer Fruit. Many fruits came to mind but I decided on Blueberries. I didn’t want a blueberry ice cream but rather an ice cream with a Blueberry Swirl. I found lots of recipes but decided to simply use some ideas I had already had while baking some cakes, crumbles, and pies.

    Blueberry Swirl Cheesecake Crumble Ice Cream


BLUEBERRY SWIRL: {adapted from Kokocooks}

    1 cup fresh blueberries
    3 Tbs sugarSplenda
    1 Tbs cornstarch
    1 Tbs water
    1 tsp fresh lemon juice

In a small saucepan, crush the blueberries with a potato masher. Stir in the sugar. Set over medium-high heat and bring to a boil. While the blueberries are heating up, form a slurry by stirring together the cornstarch and water in a small bowl. Add the slurry to the blueberries, stirring constantly. Continue stirring for one minute as the mixture thickens up. Remove from heat and stir in the lemon juice. Pour blueberry mixture into a heatproof bowl, cover, and chill until cooled. Keep in refrigerator until ready to add to the ice cream.


CHEESECAKE ICE CREAM
: {adapted from Kokocooks}

    6 oz. block cream cheese, softened
    ¾ c superfine sugar Splenda
    ½ c sour cream
    1 ½ c heavy cream
    Pinch kosher salt
    3 Tbs fresh squeezed lemon juice
    ¼ tsp vanilla extract

In a medium bowl, beat cream cheese until smooth. Add sugar and continue to beat until fluffy. Add the sour cream, heavy cream, salt, lemon juice, and vanilla and beat until smooth. Cover and chill overnight.

CRUMB TOPPING: {adapted from Nick Malgieri’s Blueberry Crumb Cake}

    2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour (spoon flour into dry-measure cup and level off)
    1 teaspoon baking powder
    1/3 cup sugar
    1/3 cup light brown sugar
    1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
    1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
    12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted.

Mix the flour, baking powder, sugars, cinnamon and nutmeg in a bowl. Melt the butter and stir it in evenly. Rub the mixture to coarse crumbs by hand. Spread mixture on buttered foil and bake for about 8 minutes at 350 degrees until browned and crunchy.

When ready to churn, remove mixture from refrigerator. Whisk a little to make sure the mixture has no lumps. Churn in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions. When Ice Cream is almost finished churning pour in the crumb topping and a few fresh blueberries. When the ice cream has finished churning spoon into a container. Spoon the blueberry mixture into the bowl and mix just enough to swirl through the ice cream. Freeze until hardened.

I had made Cheesecake Ice Cream before but with Strawberries. Blueberries sounded like a good mix. And earlier this summer I had made Malgieri’s Blueberry Crumb Cake {post to come}. I wrote on the page that the topping would make a good ice cream topping. So why not put it IN the ice cream instead. And so we have this lovely, fruity, crunchy ice cream.

I did have one problem with the ice cream. It never did soften enough to scoop. It seems to be more of a slice-and-eat ice cream. So, sorry, no pics of a pretty scoop of ice cream it a cute little bowl. Was good though.

Cake!

We love cake!

Especially with ice cream!

And this cake was perfect for ice cream. Why? You need a reason besides the fact it is CAKE??

What you are looking at is a little mini taste of yum!! A white sponge cake with four layers of cake and three layers of filling.

There are two layers of Chocolate Mousee filling and one of White Chocolate Whipped Cream. The same whipped cream that frosts the cake.

The Chocolate Mousse was TDF – To Die For!!! I have, eh, had some left over and it was great just by itself. The white chocolate was barely discernable but was there. {Which was fine with NANCY!!}. Nancy and I started this together about 10 days ago, but life got in the way so I had to put the cake layers in the freezer. I made 1/2 of the cake recipe, 1/2 of the chocolate mousse, and the complete white chocolate filling. Past experience has taught me to make more frosing than you think you need. The cake was made in Wilton’s oval pans (8″ x 5 1/2″)so 1/2 of the cake gave me two small layers which I cut into two pieces and had 1/2 of a 1/2 of a cake!!

This pick was originally from February 5, 208 and was chosen by April of Abby’s Sweets. You can find the recipe on April’s blog or on page 258 of Dorie’s Baking from My Home to Yours.

    ********************

AND on February 12, 2008, the Bakers made…..

…hosted by Jaime of Good Eats and Sweet Treats . This is the creamiest cheesecake I have ever had. And lightly flavored with apple cider it is a definite keeper.

What you have is a Gingersnap crust {I used Le Petit Beurre because that is the only cookie I had in the house.}with a layer of cheesecake covered with a layer of caramelized apples and topped with another layer of cheesecake. **SIGH** Thank goodness I only made a small 5″ cheesecake because I know I would just sit and eat the whole thing!!!

Yes, it IS that good!! And THEN I decided it needed something else so I added a small amount of caramelized cinnamon apples on the top!!

You can find the recipe on Jaime’s blog. Go there! NOW!!

Check out Nancy’s and Leslie’s CheesseCakes. They are also doing the catch-up on TWD.

One of my favorite desserts is Cheesecake. I make them often. Probably more often than I should, but…

So when Nina of Nina’s Cupcakes chose these Cookies and Cream Cheesecake Cupcakes I didn’t hesitate. In fact I made them back in June when the monthly cupcakes were posted. That’s how excited I was to see this pick.

While these are cupcakes they are really mini cheesecakes made with Oreo cookies. The cookie serves as the base, pieces of cookie are mixed in with the cheesecake batter and they are all baked up in a muffin tin. Easy! Bitesize! Good!

I made 1/2 the recipe which gave me 12 cuppys (cause that is all the Oreos I had) and the rest of the batter made a small 4″ cheesecake.

I used only sweetener and no sugar because that is how I make all my cheesecakes now. It did not deter from the taste.

One hint, if you make these don’t use paper cupcake liners. Use the foil ones. These are really damp and the paper gets very soft.

    See if the other members of liked these.

If they like cheesecake, they will love these.

There are a couple of places you can find this recipe. It’s not on Martha’s site but it is on 52 Cupcakes and Layla or Stellaland.

Last week the bakers of Tuesdays with Dorie made cookies using Dulce de Leche. And many of us made our own by boiling cans of sweetened condensed milk. Now that I have discovered a safer method (crockpot) than boiling on the stove I have several cans in the pantry. It’s just too easy.

Now that I have them, I have to do something with them so I decided to experiment with cheesecake. I adapted one from Junior’s Cheesecake Cookbook. While their recipe called for chocolate, I used the dulce.

    Dulce de Leche Marbled Cheesecake
    adapted from Junior’s Cheesecake Cookbook

Cheescake Filling -
4 8-oz packages cream cheese, full fat only
1 2/3 cups sugar
1/3 cup cornstarch
1 Tbl vanilla extract
2 extra large eggs
3/4 cup heavy or whipping cream
2/3 cup dulce de leche


Crust
I had left over Dorie cookie dough – chocolate – and made the crust from those after baking them. Mix as you would a graham cracker crust – whichever is your favorite.


1. Preheat oven to 350. Generously butter the bottom and sides of a 9-inch springform pan. (I use parchment paper.) Sprinkle cookie crumb/butter mixture into pan and pat down gently. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and cool briefly.

2. Put one package of cream cheese, 1/3 cup sugar and cornstarch in a large bowl. Beat with electric mixer on low until creamy, about 3 minutes, scraping down bowl several times. Blend in remaining cream cheese, one package at a time, scraping down bowl after each addition. Increase mixture speed to medium and beat in remaining 1 1/3 cups sugar then vanilla. Blend in eggs one at a time, beating well after each. Then add the cream, beating just until completely blended. Don’t overmix!!

3. Transfer 1/2 of the batter to a second bowl and gently fold in the dulce de leche. Keep stirring until well blended.

4. Gently spoon a third of both batters on top of crust, alternating tablespoonfuls of ddl batter and vanilla batter. Continue with second layer, placing alternating colors of batter on top of first layer. Repeat pattern until all batter is used up. Take a thin, pointed knife and cut through the batter in a swirling ‘figure 8′ pattern, turning the knife as you go. Don’t swirl too much or you will end up with a total ddl cake instead of a marbled one.

5. Place a pan on the second shelf of the oven and fill 2/3 full with water. Place cheesecake on top shelf. Bake until edges are light golden brown – about 90 minutes.

6. Remove the cake from the oven and place on a wire rack. Then WALK AWAY!!! Let it sit for about 2 hours. Cover with plastic wrap and place in refridgerator to cool – about 4 hours or overnight.

Decorate how you like, but you can see I drizzled mine with chocolate ganache and DDL.

I called for 2/3 cup DDL but found that to be almost too subtle a flavor. Next time I wil use more. Also, I think I would make the crust from the DDL cookies.


Hope you enjoy it.

One year ago we ended 2008 with the Tall and Creamy Cheesecake. And THIS year we are edning another year of TWD with cheesecake!! Coincidence…. I think not. (Well, maybe…) My absolute favorite dessert (after Galub Jamun) is CHEESECAKE. And this one did not disappoint. Good thing, too, since it was my turn to pick the LAST TWD recipe for 2009. Not as easy as you might think. (And everyone who has said that is absolutely right) I went through BFMH2Y several times. Picked out about 20 recipes and with the help of son and hubs finally settled on the LOW AND LUSH CHOCOLATE CHEESECAKE (on page 243).

I made it this morning and we ate it for dessert tonight. It was WONDERFUL. Just the right amount of chocolate.

Of course, I couldn’t just ‘follow the recipe” I had to jazz it up a bit. I made Chocolate Wafers from an old Gourmet Magazine recipe and crushed them with small bits of caramel. I was going for a Heath bar affect. Worked!! It gave me a marvously crunchy crust. I did leave the filling alone, except to sub out 1/2 the sugar for Splenda. I used Ghirardelli 72% Intense Dark Chocolate (on sale at World Market — YES!!!

The filling was smooth and velvety and delicious.


This is NOT a one time cheesecake for me. I will make this often. I hope those of you who baked along enjoyed it as much as I did.<P

Please visit the other bakers of TWD and see their creations.

…are the two major ingredients for this week’s TWD – Expresso Cheesecake Brownies – chosen by Melissa of Life in a Peanut Shell. And if you want the recipe and a beautiful example of how they SHOULD look (and they are beautiful) you should go for a visit. I love CHEESECAKE!! I love BROWNIES!! But expresso – not so much. What can I sub in that would go well with chocolate? DSC04079

Looking through my cabinet I found a little Creme de Menthe in a little bottle peeking from the back of the bottles. PERFECT!!! But I wasn’t sure how good it would be so I made 3 mini springform pans one of which had the liqueur. Good thing! It didn’t come out quite how I wanted it. DSC04081


I am glad I left the topping off some of the brownies because I didn’t care for it at all. (And it never set.) I even scraped some off of the other brownies. (Altho’ MH liked all three versions.) I LOVED the plain. The brownie layer was wonderful – I used 1/2 unsweet and 1/2 semi sweet for the chocolate. The cheesecake was basic and good. DSC04084


Sorry, Dorie, this isn’t a keeper for me, but I would use the base for a regular or chocolate (or PB) cheesecake.


If you want to see what the the TWD bakers did with this recipe visit their sites and enjoy their creativity.

Bill's big Carrot Cake....

Bill's Big Carrot Cake....

Okay!!! Now that I have your attention. You will notice that it is not a picture of Dorie’s Brioche Plum Tart!! I still have some of that fantastic Carrot Cake from Dorie (and this is a catch-up) and this Zucchini Bread left. I just couldn’t bring myself to make a tart as well.

Zuchinni Bread

Zucchini Bread

Zucchini Bread
- recipe from Colorado Farmer’s Market Cookbook.
    3 eggs, beaten
    2 cups sugar (I used 1/2 sugar and 1/2 Splendra)
    2 tsp vanilla
    1 tsp almond extract
    1 cup veggie oil
    2 cups grated zucchini
    3 cups flour
    1/2 tsp baking powder
    1 tsp salt
    1 tsp baking soda
    1 tsp cinnamon
    1/2 cup chopped walnuts
    1 cup shredded or grated coconut (optional)

Preheat oven to 350. Beat eggs until light and fluffy. Add sugar, vanilla, almond extract and oil. Blend well. Add in zucchini.
Sift together dry ingredients. Blend with egg mixture. Fold in nuts and coconut. Divide the batter between 2 greased and floured loaf pans. Bake 1 hour. (This will also make 1 regular loaf and 3 mini loaves or 6 mini loaves.)


I served the Carrot Cake with Home Made Vanilla Ice Cream. DSC03864
Of course, THEN I was in an ice cream mode, so I made some more

Strawberry Cheesecake Ice Cream

Strawberry Cheesecake Ice Cream

The recipe for the Cheesecake Ice Cream came from Megan of My Baking Adventures. And I added about 1/2 – 2/4 cup of pureed strawberries. Can I tell you HOW GOOD this was??? And next time I want to add some graham cracker crust to the ice cream itself. I could have eaten the whole container BY MYSELF. But I shared – a little!!!


And THEN because I was in Cheesecake mode – I made this:

Chocolate Caramel Cheesecake

Chocolate Caramel Cheesecake


Regular cheesecake layered with chocolate, then caramel, then chopped pecans on top of the crust. (One mistake – don’t use a ganache that will harden LIKE A ROCK – makes it hard to heat) I also swirled a little chocolate in the cheesecake itself.

Had enough yet??? Okay. UNCLE!!!

But I will leave you with just a photo or two!!

Mandevilla (B'day gift from The Son)

Mandevilla (B'day gift from The Hunk)


DSC03866 The ONE good thing about summer in the Deep South!!!

My apologies to Denise of Chez Us for not baking with her this week.


Thanks for taking the time to come by for a visit and a bite!

The April 2009 challenge is hosted by Jenny from Jenny Bakes. She has chosen Abbey’s Infamous Cheesecake as the challenge

      Aruba, Jamaica,
      Ooo I wanna take you
      Bermuda, Bahama come on pretty mama
      KeyLargo, Montego baby why dont we go
      Jamaica…
      Off the Florida Keys

And tropical is what I was thinking about when I read about the cheese cake challenge. The end of the Winter, Summer is on the horizon, and Beaches are calling. We were given a basic cheese cake recipe and free reign to do whatever we wanted with it. Our only instructions were to “Make it unique. Make a showstopper of a dessert. Add flavor, sauces, decorations – dress it up and show it off!” EXCITEMENT in the KITCHEN!!!!

Several Years ago I was at a Tropical Party and tasted a great tropical cheese cake. It actually took first prize for desserts that evening. I had the recipe, but have since lost it. Now I am going to try and replicate it.

    And I am going to call it:

      **Pina Colada Cheese Cake** (more…)

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