Sunday, February 27, 2011

Gingerbread Cheesecake = meh.

I've never baked a cheesecake before.  I've eaten many kinds of cheesecake.  I love cheesecake - as long it's not covered in sickenly over-sweetened strawberry goo.  I thought I'd try this recipe I saw in Kraft Canada's What's Cooking Magazine.  Gingerbread cheesecake recipe at   I thought it would be a great idea, Christmas themed, and since my son doesn't like cheesecake that tastes like cheese (!) would be a good non-cheesey option.

The verdict and the tutorial after the jump . . .

Here are the ingredients:

18 Peek Freans Ginger Crisps, crushed (about 1-1/4 cups)
1/4 cup butter, melted
3 pkg. (250 g each) Philadelphia Brick Cream Cheese, softened
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup molasses
1 Tbsp. vanilla
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
3 eggs
4 squares Baker's Semi-Sweet Chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup whipping cream

I really had high hopes for this receipe, I love gingerbread.  I love gingerbread cake even more.  The spices smelled wonderful!  I don't use molasses very often so I was happy to use them before they expired.

For the crust you'll need the gingersnaps and butter.  Mmmm butter.  Anything baked with lots'o'butter is fine by me.  I use unsalted.  Period.  Always.

I used a food processor to crush the snaps.  This is what I used:

Oooooh yeahhhhh, that's a Sunbeam Oskar baby!  It's old, it's retro, it was my Mum's and it'g great for small jobs.  And my Mum found a replacement bowl and blade at a thrift store a few years ago.  Seriously though, it's not very fancy but it does work well. 

Crushed, pulverized, smashed.  Done. 

Melt the butter, gather your crust stuff and the springform pan.

Blend together in a bowl until all the crumbs are moistened.

Press into pan, evenly.  Contemplate getting a manicure ASAP.  Maybe on Friday.  Maybe when the house is clean the laundry is both folded AND put away. 

Next grab your beautiful cornflower blue mixer.  Blend the cream cheese with the sugar. 

Now add the flavour ingredients to the cheese and sugar mixture.  There's high-quality vanilla, molasses, ginger, cloves, cinnamon and nutmeg.  Blend until combined. 

 Next add the eggs, one at a time until blended and fluffier than before!

 Now you're going to pour the cheese mixture into the springform pan with the base mixture already in it.

Bake at 350°F for 45-50 minutes.  Remove from oven, score around rim of pan, cool completely.  Refrigerate  for 4 hours.

Yes, my cheese mixture cracked.  No, it's not pretty.  BUT I'm going to cover this in chocolate, so I really didn't care if it cracked or not. 

The recipe recommends using the microwave to melt the chocolate.  I'm not going to do that - I'm kicking it old-school and using my Grandmother (her name is Nanny, and when I'm a Grandmother I hope to be called GrandmaNana).  So I used Nanny's old double-boiler.  She's been gone a few years now, she was a great baker and seamstress.  I'll post all about her one day, she deserves her own post.

Start by filling the bottem pan with water, about 2/3 of the way.  Then insert the top pan into it.  The point is to melt, but not scald, cook, burn or tarnish the lovely chocoate in any way.

But we want C-R-E-A-M-Y not just melted chocolate, right?  Add the whipping cream and stir.  Be patient.  You don't want to rush this at all.

See?  Now wasn't that worth the wait? 

I decided to pour the chocolate on with the springform in place, I didn't want to have the chocolate dripping over the edges.  But that's just what I decided to do. 

Remove the ring before you're ready to serve.  Score with a knife before removing!

Ta-da!  Looks yummy.

The verdict?  Umm, not so good.  Too much ginger overload.  I would make the crust with a plain cheesecake mixture, or make the flavoured cheesecake with NO crust.  It was just too many flavours all at once.   

No comments:

Post a Comment