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Archive for the ‘cheesecake’ Category

cookie dough cheesecake

28 Apr

Some words just make your mouth water – and cookie dough is one of them!  This cake won first prize in a contest years ago and with good reason!  I already decided that this will be the cheesecake I serve my guests this Shavuos.  Well, maybe one of the cheesecakes….  You see, my friends Shirley and Chaim Cohen eat by us the first night of Shavuos each year.   Every year when I invite Shirley, I tell her that I don’t know if and what we’ll eat because I don’t know when I’ll have time to cook, and she always answers me with a laugh “that’s OK, we’ll have 4 courses of cheesecake!”  And she’s not joking – it’s my family that would have an issue with that…..

 Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cheesecake

Ingredients

  • 1-3/4 cups crushed chocolate chip cookies or chocolate wafer crumbs
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup butter, melted
  • FILLING:
  • 3 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup (8 ounces) sour cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten

 

  • COOKIE DOUGH:
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1-1/2 cups miniature semisweet chocolate chips, divided

Directions

  • In a small bowl, combine cookie crumbs and sugar; stir in butter.
  • Press onto the bottom and 1 in up the sides of a greased 9-in. pan.  Place pan on a baking sheet; set aside.
  • In a large bowl, beat cream cheese and sugar until smooth.  Beat in sour cream and vanilla.  Add eggs; beat on low speed just until combined.  Pour over crust; set aside.
  • In another bowl, cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy.   Add water and vanilla.  Gradually add flour and mix well.  Stir in 1 cup chocolate chips.
  • Drop dough by teaspoonfuls over filling, gently pushing dough below surface (dough should be completely covered by filling). Place pan on a baking sheet.
  • Bake at 350° for 45-55 minutes or until center is almost set.
  • Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Carefully run a knife around edge of pan to loosen; cool 1 hour longer.  Refrigerate overnight.
  • Remove sides of pan. Sprinkle with remaining chips. Refrigerate leftovers.

 

  • Yield: 12-16 servings.
Nutrition Facts: (do you really want to know??) 1 slice equals 551 calories, 36 g fat (22 g saturated fat), 131 mg cholesterol, 328 mg sodium, 52 g carbohydrate, 2 g fiber, 8 g protein.
recipe credit: Taste of Home
photo credit: Taste of Home

 

pecan cheesecake pie

28 Apr

Pecan pie and cheesecake all in one bite! Who could resist this?  I got this recipe from Devorah Newhaus many years ago, but like everything else, I found it on the internet with a picture!Pecan Cheesecake Pie

 

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 unbaked 9-inch pie crust
  • 1 (8 oz.) package cream cheese, softened
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp. salt

 

  • 1 ¼ cups chopped pecans

 

  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup light corn syrup
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup sugar

 

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. Combine the cream cheese, 1 egg, ½ cup sugar, 1 tsp. vanilla, and salt. Beat at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth.
  3. Pour the cream cheese mixture into piecrust.
  4. Next, chop the pecans (not too fine) and sprinkle them evenly over the cream cheese layer.
  5. In a medium bowl, combine the 1/4 cup sugar, corn syrup, 3 eggs and 1 teaspoon of vanilla.
  6. Whisk everything together until it’s well combined and pour the mixture over the pecans. Place the pie on a baking sheet.
  7. Bake at 350 on the lowest oven rack for 50 to 55 minutes or until the pie is set.
  8. Cool completely on a wire rack (about 1 hour).
  9. Serve immediately, or cover and chill up to 2 days.

photo credit: Jennifer Davick

 

 

neopolitan cheesecake

28 Apr

Someone recently asked me if I have any cheesecake recipes to share for an upcoming publication.  I said they could take anything off my website, but she said there wasn’t much there.  What????  I checked and she was right!  I guess the Shavuos/cheesecake season with late nights and long work hours, doesn’t leave much time for blog writing!  I am trying to rectify the situation,  and you’re all welcome to share your favorite recipes here as well.
Who doesn’t like the Neopolitan ice cream combination?  Not only does it look enticing, the flavors are familiar and comforting.  This cake has won awards and ribbons around the country.   The recipe called for a 9-inch springform pan but I think it is more impressive in the 8-inch because the layers won’t be so flat.  You can choose between the two.  Happy Baking!!
INGREDIENTS
  • 1 cup chocolate wafer crumbs
  • 5 tablespoons butter, melted,divided
  • 3 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 5 ounces semisweet chocolate, divided
  • 2 1/2 ounces white chocolate, divided
  • 1/3 cup mashed or blended sweetened strawberries
  • 2 teaspoons shortening, divided

 

DIRECTIONS
1.   Combine crumbs and 3 tablespoons of butter; press onto the bottom of an ungreased 8-in. springform pan or one piece cheesecake pan.   Bake at 350 degrees for 8 minutes; Cool.
2.  In a mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese and sugar until smooth.  Beat in eggs, one at a time just until mixed.   Add vanilla
3.  Divide batter into three portions, about 1 2/3 cups each.  Melt 2 squares semisweet chocolate (I microwave them at 50% power
for 1-2 minutes to get them melted); stir into one portion of the batter.  Spread dark chocolate mixture evenly over crust.  Freeze pan for 1 hour before proceeding.
4.   Melt 2 ounces of white chocolate; stir into second portion.  Carefully spoon this layer on top of the dark chocolate layer.  Freeze for 20 minutes before proceeding.
5.  Stir strawberries into the remaining batter.  Carefully spoon it on top of the previous 2 layers.
6.  Bake cheesecake on the lowest shelf in the oven, in a water bath,  at 325 degrees for approximately 1 hour and 10 minutes.  The center of the cake should jiggle.  It will set as it cools.  If the cake is no longer frozen when it goes in the oven, you can bake it on the 2nd to bottom shelf in the oven.
7.  Remove from oven.  Cool for several hours or overnight.
8.  Run a knife around edge of pan and remove cake from pan.
9.  Melt remaining semisweet chocolate, remaining butter and 1 teaspoon of shortening; cool for 2 minutes.  Pour over cake.  (note:  this amount of chocolate will only coat the top of the cake).
10.  Melt remaining white chocolate and shortening then drizzle over glaze.
11.  Refrigerate until cold before serving.
recipe credit: Taste of Home
photo credit: Lusenda
 

amazing banana nut roll

09 May

Amazing Banana Nut Roll

I love bananas in any way, shape or form.  To paraphrase a childrens’ book “I can eat them here or there, I can eat them anywhere!”  After I tried this cake many years ago, I misplaced the recipe and went to great lengths to get another copy. (I finally found it in the library, where they keep magazines on file for quite a while.)  This cake is a favorite of my sisters’, and I know that she would welcome a piece any day!

In this cake, the jellyroll and the filling are baked together and then they are rolled together. A thin icing is then spread over the cake.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 11 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp. baking soda
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 large banana, mashed (about 1/2 cup)
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts or pecans
  • 4 egg whites
  • 1/2 cup sugar

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Lightly grease a 15 x 10 x 1-inch baking pan (cookie sheet). Line bottom with parchment paper. Set aside.
  2. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  3. Combine cream cheese and 1/2 cup sugar in a bowl. Beat with the paddle attachment of your mixer on medium until smooth. Add whole egg and milk; beat until combined. Spread in the prepared pan; set aside.
  4. In a small mixer bowl, beat egg yolks and vanilla on medium speed about 5 minutes or until thick and lemon colored. Gradually add the 1/3 cup sugar, beating till sugar is dissolved. Stir in banana and nuts.
  5. In a clean bowl, with clean beaters, beat the egg whites on medium speed until soft peaks form (tips curl). Slowly add the 1/2 cup sugar, beating on high speed until stiff peaks form (tips stand straight). Do not over beat.
  6. Fold yolk mixture into egg whites. Sprinkle the flour mixture evenly over egg mixture; fold in just until blended.
  7. Carefully spread the batter evenly over the filling in the pan. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until the cake springs back when lightly touched.
  8. Immediately loosen the cake from sides of pan and turn out onto a towel sprinkled with powdered sugar. Carefully peel off paper. Starting with narrow end, roll up cake using towel as a guide. (Do not roll towel into cake.) Cool completely on wire rack.
  9. spread top with cream cheese frosting. If desired, drizzle with chocolate syrup.

Cream cheese frosting: In a small mixing bowl combine 1 1/2 oz cream cheese, softened and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, beat with a mixer on medium until light and fluffy. Gradually beat in 1 cup unsifted powdered sugar. Beat in enough milk (1 to 2 tablespoons) to make a frosting of spreading consistency. Makes about 1/2 cup frosting.

Makes 10 servings.

recipe credit: Better Homes & Gardens

photo credit: kitchenchatter

 

big apple cheesecake

25 Sep

In anticipation of Rosh Hashanah, I got the urge to bake an apple topped cheesecake today.  It’s not like I had nothing else to do, but you know, I do tend to get sidetracked.  This is a combination of  the 2 most favorite American desserts, cheesecake and apple pie, and although I’ve seen this combination many times, I never had the opportunity to try it.  Big apple cheesecake is like a creamy apple-cinnamon coffee cake – comfort at it’s best.  I baked this cake as the recipe said, with raw apples, but despite the fact that some of my tasters liked it that way, I think that next time I’d prefer to cook them first.  (If you don’t eat walnuts on Rosh Hashanah, you may substitute any nut.)

Ingredients

CRUST

  • 1 cup graham cracker crumbs (I don’t know why they don’t sell it in crumbs!  It would save us all so much work)
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts

 

FILLING

  • 1 lb cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 4 cups very thin apple slices
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts

 

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2.  To make crust, combine graham cracker crumbs, sugar, cinnamon, butter, and walnuts.

3.  Press mixture into the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan.

4.  To make filling, with an electric mixer set on medium speed, combine cream cheese and 1/2 cup sugar, mixing until creamy.

5.  Add eggs, one at a time, mixing will after each addition.

6.  Blend in vanilla and pour filling into crust.  Set aside.

7.  Toss apple slices with 1/3 cup sugar and cinnamon.  Here you have an option to leave the apples uncooked, in which case, they will be a little crunchy after baking, or you can lightly cook the mixture for 20-30 minutes on a low flame until the apples are softish and nicely carameled.

8.  Spoon coated apple slices over filling and then sprinkle with walnuts.

9.  Bake for approx 1 1/2 hours.

10.  Remove pan from oven, and let cool for about 2 hours.

11.  Chill in the refrigerator for 4-6 hours.

 

My favorite cheesecake

05 Jun

I guess we all have our little secrets and now I’ll let you in on one of mine. My mother sends me cheesecake for Shavuos each year!

No, it’s not the New York-Style Cheesecake that I sell in many different sizes and flavors, it is an old-fashioned “European-style” cheesecake with a farmer-cheese filling sandwiched between 2 layers of buttery pastry.

In keeping with the holiday tradition of her mother before her, my mother sends all of her children carefully wrapped packages of this delicious cheesecake along with yummy cheese kreplach, cheese blintzes, and cheese knaidlach (see previous post for recipes).

At times, I buckle under pressure from customers to make these delicacies for them. But don’t think I go it alone. I will only embark on a project like this when my mother agrees to work alongside me, and by teaching me, she is continuing the legacy of a cherished family tradition.

Please understand that the recipes are not exact because grandmothers tended to give over recipes by saying “a little salt, some sugar, melt butter and breadcrumbs etc.” – because they only knew when the texture or taste was right. They managed well – and so can you!

“OLD-FASHIONED” CHEESE CAKE

Dough

  • 4 cups flour
  • 1/2 lb. butter (not whipped)
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • salt to taste
  • vanilla sugar to taste

Filling

  • 3 lbs. farmer cheese
  • 2 tablespoons sour cream
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 2 tablespoons farina (uncooked)
  • 3 eggs, separated plus 3 whites (use the left over whites from the dough)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 vanilla sugar

 

For Dough: Crumble the flour and butter till butter pieces are about the size of peas.  Add rest of ingredients.  Do not overmix.  Divide dough into 2, where one half is a bit larger than the other.  Chill for 1/2 hour to 1 hour. Roll out larger half of dough large enough to cover the bottom and sides of the pan.  Roll the dough onto the rolling pin, and unroll into the pan.  Press edges in place.

Mix all filling ingredients together and pour into the dough. 

Roll out the second dough and transfer to top of filling by rolling the rolled out dough onto a rolling pin and unrolling it on top of the filling in the pan.  Using a fork, make holes in the top dough to allow air to escape while baking.  You can freeze at this point to be baked fresh on the day of use or bake now at 350 until dough is a golden color.  Sprinkle with confectionary sugar before serving.

 

Tips for cheesecake baking success

30 May

It is Cheesecake Season!!!  You are all waiting for my secret recipes, no doubt  but the secret is not in the recipes.  Anyone can make an awesome cheesecake by choosing a recipe that ”calls their name” and by using the best and finest ingredients available to you.

Here are a few tips that I’ve learned over the years.  They are sure to give you professional results every time!

 

  1. Leave the cream cheese at room temperature until it is pliable when you squeeze it.  (Unless the recipe specifically calls for whipped cream cheese, use the cream cheese bars.)
  2. Using a paddle attachment, mix the cream cheese with the sugar and beat well.  Scrape down the bowl and beat until you are certain that there are no lumps.  The sugar melts the cheese, so if it is not smooth at this point, it will be hard to get the lumps out later.
  3. With the mixer on LOW, add the eggs, one at a time and mix just until incorporated.  Do not beat air into the batter at this point as it may result in cracking.
  4. Add vanilla and flavorings according to your recipe.  The addition of sour cream and heavy cream will lighten the cheesecake and make it more creamy.  I use them in some but not all of my recipes.
  5. Butter the pan evenly with a cold stick of butter.  A coating of cooking spray is also acceptable.  Be sure to get every spot, including the rim so the cake rises evenly when baking.  Otherwise, cracks may result.
  6. Bake in a preheated oven in a water bath.  This means that the cake pan sits in a larger pan with an inch or more of water.  Although someone recommended baking it for longer at a lower temperature, the only benefit I can see is that the finished color will be lighter.  Likewise, leaving it in the oven to cool has no affect on the cracking of the cake.  I have never had a cake crack after coming out of the oven.  Due to time constraints, I bake my cakes at 325 or 350 degrees for about 1 hour and 10 minutes.  I remove them immediately to put in the next batch.  It’s totally fine.  Never leave the oven door propped open if you have small children walking around.
  7. Cool the cake completely!!!  Leave it on the counter or in the fridge for 6-8 hours or overnight.  If using a springform pan, release the side and remove it (a one piece cheesecake pan can be immersed in a pan of boiling water for a  few seconds and proceed).  Then, cover the cake with a paper towel,top with a plate or cake board and flip the cake upside down onto the plate/board.  Now your cake is upside down, so cover it with the plate/board you want to serve it on, and flip it back over.
  8. Slice the cheesecake with dental floss (preferably unflavored) for neat slices.

Cheesecake is very versatile and durable.  It can be frozen and defrosted several times without diminishing the flavor or texture.  It will lose some of its’ creaminess the longer it is left in the fridge, but will last safely for up to 2 weeks.

Unlike recipes for cakes and cookies, cheesecake is a baked custard and you can generally create your own flavors.  A basic recipe is 2 lbs. cream cheese, 1 3/4 cups sugar, 4 eggs, and 1 tsp vanilla.  From here you can add melted chocolate to 1/3 of the batter and marble it back in.  Or experiment with different flavors.  Add White chocolate to all of it or do dark chocolate in 1/3, milk chocolate in another 1/3 and white chocolate in another.  The sky’s the limit!