Monday, April 27, 2009

Cheesecake Challenge....

The Daring Bakers are at it again, and cheesecake is the dessert of choice. Now who doesn't love cheesecake. It was left up to each baker to take a basic recipe and twist it into your own creation. I chose to do something I had never done....a chocolate Oreo crust with a half chocolate, half vanilla inside, with a ganache top...(only to cover up the crack on top)

It is important to bake this in a water bath so that it will evenly distribute the heat. Just be careful when taking out the cake not to get burnt. I doubled the recipe, then took half and added melted dark chocolate (1/2 cup). I thought the cake might be a little dry, but it actually came out real creamy. I'm always in fear that water will leak into the bottom, but my pan held up. I was really glad that something simple and delicious was chosen this month. I hadn't made cheesecake in so long.


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


Cheesecake:
6 sticks of cream cheese, 8 oz each, room temperature
2 cup sugar
5 large eggs
1 cup sour cream
1 tbsp. lemon juice
1 tbsp. vanilla extract

DIRECTIONS:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees . Begin to boil a large pot of water for the water bath.

2. Mix together the crust ingredients and press into your preferred pan. You can press the crust just into the bottom, or up the sides of the pan too - baker's choice. Set crust aside.

3. Combine cream cheese and sugar in the bowl of a stand-mixer (or in a large bowl if using a hand-mixer) and cream together until smooth. Add eggs, one at a time, fully incorporating each before adding the next. Make sure to scrape down the bowl in between each egg. Add sour cream, vanilla, lemon juice, and alcohol and blend until smooth and creamy.

4. Pour batter into prepared crust and tap the pan on the counter a few times to bring all air bubbles to the surface. Place pan into a larger pan and pour boiling water into the larger pan until halfway up the side of the cheesecake pan. If cheesecake pan is not airtight, cover bottom securely with foil before adding water.

5. Bake 45 to 55 minutes, until it is almost done - this can be hard to judge, but you're looking for the cake to hold together, but still have a lot of jiggle to it in the center. You don't want it to be completely firm at this stage. Close the oven door, turn the heat off, and let rest in the cooling oven for one hour. This lets the cake finish cooking and cool down gently enough so that it won't crack on the top. After one hour, remove cheesecake from oven and lift carefully out of water bath. Let it finish cooling on the counter, and then cover and put in the fridge to chill. Once fully chilled, it is ready to serve.

**Prep notes: While the actual making of this cheesecake is a minimal time commitment, it does need to bake for almost an hour, cool in the oven for an hour, and chill overnight before it is served. Please plan accordingly!

3 Others Say::

Marcia@Frugalhomekeeping said...

This cheesecake looks sinfully good! One of my favorite desserts; can't have it in the house because, unlike my husband, I never forget that it's in the fridge!

Madam Chow said...

That sounds amazing, especially the Oreo Cookie crust!

Jenny said...

This really looks delicious. I love how creamy this recipe is, and especially with chocolate. Sorry I'm so late in commenting on your post. I'm determined to make it to every one of the 1k+ Daring Bakers, it is just taking me a while.

Jenny of JennyBakes