Archive for the ‘Cheesecake’ Category

Cheesecake of the Month – May 2019!

May 14, 2019

This month’s recipe features lingonberries which are small, red berries that taste similar to cranberries but are not quite as tart.  My first exposure to lingonberries was on a visit to see my Aunt and Uncle in Green Bay, Wisconsin . . . the visit included a trip up to Door County where we dined at the Al Johnson’s Swedish Restaurant & Butik.  In addition to the entertainment of the roof-grazing goats, the food was positively fantastic — especially the Swedish pancakes with the lingonberries.  Yum!

Lingonberry Cheesecake

Ingredients
1-1/4 cups of graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup of finely chopped hazelnuts (filberts)
1/3 cup of butter, melted
3 packages (8-ounces each) cream cheese, softened
3/4 cup of sugar
1-1/2 teaspoons of vanilla
1/2 teaspoon of ground cardamom
3 eggs, slightly beaten
1 jar (14 to 14-1/2 ounces) of lingonberries

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  In a medium bowl, combine the graham cracker crumbs and hazelnuts.  Stir in the melted butter and combine.  Press this mixture onto the bottom and up the sides of your 9″ springform pan.  Bake for 10 minutes and cool on a wire rack.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine the cream cheese, sugar, vanilla, and cardamom.  Beat with an electric mixer on medium speed until smooth.  Stir in the eggs until just combined.
  3. In a small saucepan, heat the lingonberries over low heat until softened, stirring occasionally.  Drain the lingonberries through a sieve, reserving the syrup and the berries.  Cover and chill the syrup until you are ready to serve.  Stir the berries into the cream cheese mixture.  Pour the mixture into your crust-lined pan.
  4. Place your springform pan into a shallow baking pan.  Bake for 40-45 minutes, or until the 2-1/2 inches around the edge appears set when gently shaken.
  5. Cool on a wire rack for 15 minutes.  Loosen the sides of the pan and cool for an additional 30 minutes.  Refrigerate.
  6. To serve, stir the berry syrup and spoon over the cheesecake.

Cheesecake of the Month – April 2019!

April 15, 2019

Here is yet another cheesecake recipe for the chocolate-lovers of the world!

Chocolate Cookie Cheesecake

Ingredients
2 cups of cream-filled chocolate sandwich cookie crumbs (about 20 cookies)
2 Tablespoons of butter, melted
1/4 cup of packed brown sugar
4 (8-ounces each) packages of cream cheese, softened
1-1/4 cups of sugar
1/3 cup of whipping cream
2 Tablespoons of flour
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
4 large eggs
2 cups of coarsely crumbled cream-filled chocolate sandwich cookies (about 14 cookies)
1 (16-ounce) container of sour cream
1/4 cup of sugar
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
1/2 cup of whipping cream
1-1/4 cups of semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
Garnish: additional cream-filled chocolate sandwich cookies, coarsely crumbled

Directions
1.  Combine the first three ingredients in a medium bowl; press this mixture onto the bottom (and up the sides) of a 10″ springform pan.  Bake at 325 degrees for  12 minutes and set aside.

2.  Beat the cream cheese at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy.  Gradually add the 1-1/4 cup of sugar beating well.  Add the 1/3 cup of whipping cream, flour, and 1 teaspoon of vanilla and beat well.  Add the eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition.

3.  Pour 3-1/2 cups of the batter into your prepared crust.  Top with 2 cups of your crumbled cookies; then pour the remaining batter over the top of the cookies.  Bake at 325 degrees for 1 hour and 15 minutes.

4.  Combine the sour cream, 1/4 cup of sugar, and 1 teaspoon of vanilla; spread over the top of the cheesecake.  Bake at 325 degrees for an additional 7 minutes.  Turn off the oven and leave the cheesecake inside for an additional 45 minutes.  Remove the cheesecake from the oven and cool completely on a wire rack.  Cover and chill for 8 hours.  Gently run a knife around the edge of the springform pan to release the sides of the pan and remove the pan.

5.  Combine the 1/2 cup of whipping cream and semi-sweet chocolate chips in a saucepan; stir over low heat until melted.  Stir in 1 teaspoon of vanilla.  Remove from the heat and carefully spread over the cheesecake (allow some to drip down the sides).  Store the cheesecake in the refrigerator.  Garnish if you wish.

Source: Southern Living Little Book of Cheesecakes, p. 42.

Cheesecake of the Month – March 2019!

March 16, 2019

Here is a cheesecake recipe that combines the flavors of coconut and chocolate (think of a Mounds candy bar). Yum!

Black and White Cheesecake

Ingredients
1-1/2 cups of shortbread cookie crumbs
2 Tablespoons of sugar
3 Tablespoons of butter, melted
3/4 cup of butter
8 (1-ounce each) squares of semi-sweet chocolate
1 (8-ounce) package of cream cheese, softened
1 (3-ounce) package of cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup of sugar
3 large eggs
1/3 cup of cream of coconut
1-1/4 cups of whipping cream
2 Tablespoons of powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract
1 (3-ounce) package of coconut chips

Directions
1.  Combine the first three ingredients and stir well.  Press onto the bottom and up the sides of a 9″ springform pan.  Bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes (or until toasted) and set aside.

2.  Reduce the oven temperature to 300 degrees.  Combine the 3/4 cup of butter and the chocolate in a heavy saucepan.  Cook over medium-low heat until melted, stirring often.  Remove from the heat and cool.

3.  Beat the cream cheese at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy.  Add 1/2 up of sugar and beat well.  Add the eggs, one at a time, beating just until blended. Stir in the cooled chocolate mixture and the cream of coconut.  Pour this mixture into your prepared pan.  Bake at 300 degrees for 40 minutes or until the cheesecake is barely set.  Cool to room temperature in the pan on a wire rack; cover and chill for 8 hours.

4.  Beat the whipping cream at high speed until foamy; gradually add the powdered sugar; beat until soft peaks form.  Add the vanilla and beat just until blended.

5.  Gently run a knife around the edge of your cheesecake pan to release the pan.  Carefully remove the pan and place the cheesecake on your serving plate.  Frost the top (and the sides) with the whipped cream mixture.  Gently press coconut onto the sides and sprinkle coconut on the top of the cheesecake.  Chill thoroughly.

Source: Southern Living Little Book of Cheesecakes, p. 41.

Cheesecake of the Month — February 2019!

February 16, 2019

Here is a recipe that I have had for quite some time, but have not yet made.  Sounds a bit like a turtle cheesecake with some slight variation (toffee and orange).  Yummy!

Applause Cheesecake

Ingredients
1 (16-ounce) package of pecan shortbread cookies (about 22 cookies)
1 cup of pecan halves, coursely chopped
1/2 cup of firmly packed brown sugar
2 Tablespoons of orange liqueur, divided
1-1/3 cups of toffee bits
3 (8-ounces each) packages of cream cheese, softened
1 cup of sugar
3 large eggs
1/2 cup of whipping cream
1 Tablespoon of flour
1 Tablespoon of vanilla extract
1-1/4 cups of semi-sweet chocolate morsels
1/4 cup of sour cream
1-1/4 cups of chopped pecans, toasted
1/2 cup of caramel topping

Directions
1.  In your food processor, finely grind the cookies, pecans, and brown sugar.  Add 1 Tablespoon of the orange liqueuer and grind until well blended.  Press this crumb mixture firmly onto the bottom and up the sides of a 10″ springform pan.  Sprinkle the toffee bits over the top of the crust and set aside.

2.  Beat the cream cheese at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy; gradually add the sugar and mix well.  Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.  Add the whipping cream, flour, and vanilla and beat for five minutes.  Pour your batter into your prepared crust.

3.  Bake at 325 degrees for an hour and fifteen minutes or until the center is almost set.  Cool in the pan on a wire rack for fifteen minutes.

4.  Meanwhile, combine the chocolate morsels and sour cream in a heavy saucepan.  Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until the chocolate melts.  Spread the chocolate mixture evenly over the  cheesecake.  Sprinkle the toasted pecans over the top of the chocolate.  Combine the caramel topping and the remaining liqueur; spread evenly over the pecans.  Cool to room temperature on a wire rack; cover and chill at least 8 hours.  Gently run a knife around the outer edge of the pan to release the pan and serve.

Source: Southern Living Little Book of Cheesecakes, p. 40.

Cheesecake of the Month — January 2019!

January 15, 2019

For those of you who enjoy your coffee made by “forcing a small amount of nearly boiling water under pressure through finely ground coffee beans,” this dessert recipe is for you!  Enjoy!

Espresso Cheesecake

Ingredients
2-1/2 cups of graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup + 2 Tablespoons of butter, melted
2 teaspoons of almond extract
4 (8-ounces each) packages of cream cheese, softened
2/3 cup of sugar
3 large eggs
8 (1-ounce each) sauares of semi-sweet chocolate, melted
1/3 cup of milk
2 teaspoons of espresso powder
Chocolate curls (garnish)

Directions
1. Combine the first three ingredients in a medium bowl and stir well.  Press the mixture onto the bottom and up the sides of a 9″ springform pan.  Set aside.

2. Beat the cream cheese on high speed with an electric mixer until creamy.  Gradually add the sugar, beating well.  Add the eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition.  Add the melted chocolate and beat well.  Combine the milk and espresso powder and mix until the powder dissolves.  Add the espresso mixture to the cream cheese mixture and beat until smooth.  Pour the mixture into your prepared crust.

3.  Bake at 350 degrees for 45 to 50 minutes, or until the center is almost set.  Cool (in the pan) at room temperature on a wire rack.  Cover and refrigerate (at least 8 hours) until you are ready to serve.  Run a knife around the edges of the pan to loosen before removing the pan, then garnish and serve.

Source: espresso definition (wikipedia); and Southern Living Little Book of Cheesecakes, p. 37.

Cheesecake of the Month – December 2018!

December 15, 2018

This month’s recipe (post-Thanksgiving, pre-Christmas), a pumpkin-based cheesecake, is ideally suited for the fall holidays.  I encountered several recipes with subtle variations.  So depending on the flavor you hope to achieve, take your pick.  The first recipe I found, courtesy of The Suburban Soapbox blog, is the Mini Bourbon Pumpkin Praline Cheesecake.  What is attractive about this recipe: the mini, muffin-sized cheesecakes; perfect for individual servings of this decadent treat.  The second recipe, and a variation on the first, courtesy of the Brunette Baker blog, moves the bourbon to the praline topping and adds maple (Mini Pumpkin Cheesecake with Maple Bourbon Praline Sauce).  The third recipe I found is a standard-sized cheesecake, courtesy of Epicurious, is the Bourbon Pumpkin Cheesecake.  All three sound marvelous . . . ah decisions, decisions.  Happy Holidays!

Cheesecake of the Month – November 2018!

November 15, 2018

Here is a tasty-sounding cheesecake recipe that was circulating on Facebook (courtesy of http://www.littlethings.com) last summer.  Cheesecake is already decadent, but throw Butterfinger candies into the mix and wow, happiness for the taste buds for sure.  And, they are the perfect one-serving size (cupcake).

Ingredients
1 12 cups chocolate cookie crumbs
2 Tbsps. sugar, and 12 cup sugar
6 Tbsps. butter, melted
3 8-oz. packs cream cheese, softened
2 eggs
2 Tbsps. sour cream
1 Tbsp. vanilla extract
34 cup white chocolate chips
2 tsps. shortening
1 34 cup crushed Butterfinger candies
8 oz. whipped topping
12 cup peanut butter chips

Instructions
1. To make the crust, combine cracker crumbs, 2 Tbsps. sugar, and butter in a bowl, and mix until combined.
2. Spoon mixture evenly into 24 cupcake liners, and press down. Set aside.
3. To make the cheesecakes, beat 2 packs cream cheese and 1/2 cup sugar in a large bowl, until fluffy.
4. Add in eggs, sour cream, vanilla extract, and beat well.
5. In a microwave-safe bowl, add white chocolate chips and 1 tsp. shortening. Heat for 30-second intervals, and stir until chocolate is melted and smooth.
6. Add melted chocolate to cream cheese mixture, and add 1 cup crushed Butterfingers. Stir well to mix.
7.  Fill each cupcake liner with cheesecake mixture. Bake in oven at 350 °F for 18 to 22 minutes. Remove and let cool for 15 minutes.
8.  To make the mousse, beat 1 pack cream cheese until creamy.
9.  In a microwave-safe bowl, add peanut butter chips and remaining shortening. Heat for 30 to 45 seconds, and stir until smooth.
10.  Add melted chips to cream cheese, and mix. Add in whipped topping, and fold mixture well.
11.  Spread 1 Tbsp. of mousse on top of each cake. Top with remaining crushed Butterfingers.
12.  Refrigerate for a few hours. Serve, and enjoy!

Cheesecake of the Month — October 2018!

October 15, 2018

I was recently challenged by a colleague to attempt a “vegan” cheesecake.  Before I could do any research myself, another colleague had forwarded me a recipe for a quick and easy vegan cheesecake (courtesy of Vegangela).  Vegangela further referenced a recipe by Allyson Kramer that was gluten-free as well as vegan.

I adapted Allyson’s recipe a bit by substituting ground pecans for the almonds, and blueberry preserves for the blackberry topping . . . but, this “base” vegan cheesecake recipe could prove to be a keeper that just gets adjusted as I try new flavors.  Yum!

This recipe is super easy, and, it requires no baking!

Cheesecake of the Month – September 2018!

September 15, 2018

Here is a recipe for a Turtle Cheesecake that I ran across the other day . . . I’ve never made this form of “pastry crust” for a cheesecake before and am anxious to see how it turns out.

Turtle Cheesecake

Ingredients
Crust
1 cup of flour
1/3 cup of brown sugar
1/4 cup of finely chopped pecans
6 Tablespoons of cold butter, cubed

Filling
4 packages (8-ounces each) of cream cheese, softened
1 cup of sugar
1/3 cup of brown sugar
1/4 cup, plus 1 teaspoon, of flour, divided
2 Tablespoons of heavy whipping cream
1-1/2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
4 eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup of milk chocolate chips, melted and cooled
1/4 cup of caramel ice cream topping
1/3 cup of chopped pecans

Ganache
1/2 cup of milk chocolate chips
1/4 cup of heavy whipping cream
2 Tablespoons of chopped pecans
Additional caramel ice cream topping

Directions
1. Securely wrap the outside and bottom of a greased 9″ springform pan in heavy-duty aluminum foil.

2. In a small bowl, combine the flour, brown sugar and pecans; cut in the butter until crumbly.  Press onto the bottom of your prepared pan.  Place your pan on a baking sheet and bake at 325 degrees for 12-15 minutes or until set.  Cool on a wire rack.

3. In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese and sugars until smooth.  Beat in the 1/4 cup of flour, the cream, and the vanilla.  Add the eggs and beat on low speed just until blended.  Remove one cup of the batter and combine with the melted chocolate.  Pour this mixture over your crust.

4.  In another bowl, mix the caramel topping, remaining flour, and the pecans.  Drop by Tablespoonfuls over the chocolate batter.  Top with the remaining batter.  Place the springform pan in a large baking pan and add an inch of hot water to this larger pan.

5.  Bake at 325 degrees for 1-1/4 to 1-1/2 hours, or until the center is just set and the top appears dull.  Remove the springform pan from your water bath and remove the foil.  Cool the cheesecake on a wire rack for about ten minutes before attempting to loosen the sides of the pan from the cheesecake with a knife.  Cool for one hour longer before refrigerating overnight.

6.  For the ganache, place the milk chocolate chips in a small bowl.  In a small saucepan, bring the cream just to a boil before pouring over the chips; whisk this combination until smooth.  Allow this mixture to cool slightly; continue stirring occasionally.

7.  Remove the sides of your pan.  Spread the ganache over the cheesecake and sprinkle with the pecans.  Refrigerate until set.  Add additional caramel topping (if you so desire) prior to serving.

Enjoy!

Cheesecake of the Month – August 2018!

August 15, 2018

Are you looking for a different kind of cheesecake (texture and flavor)?  Here’s a recipe that is sure to offer this difference.

Italian Ricotta Cheesecake

Ingredients
1-1/2 cups of pecans, ground
1-1/2 pounds of ricotta cheese, drained
1 cup of sugar
1/4 cup of flour
4 eggs
1 teaspoon of almond extract (can substitute 1 teaspoon of almond liqueur)
1/4 cup of confectioner’s sugar

Directions
1.  Crust: sprinkle (generously and evenly) the bottom of your cheesecake pan with the ground pecans and set aside.

2.  Filling: in a large mixing bowl, beat the ricotta cheese and sugar on medium-high speed for three (3) minutes.  Add the flour and mix for an additional three (3) minutes.  Add the eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition.  Add the almond extract (or liqueur).  Pour the batter over your crust.  Bake for fifty-five (55) to sixty-five (65) minutes or until the top is light brown and the center has a slight jiggle to it.  Cool on a wire rack for two (2) hours.  Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least six (6) hours before decorating.

3. Decoration: after the cake has chilled, dust the top with a sprinkling of confectioner’s sugar.