Once in a while, I get this sweet tooth craving. Which is weird because I usually prefer salty snacks to desserts. Think murukku, salted peanuts, roasted cashews and the like.
But when I get into that mood, I go into the kitchen and whip up a cake or sometimes two. I figure that if I am firing up the oven, I might as well batch bake some yummies.
Since it’s only me and Nic and eating an entire cake is out of the question, I usually freeze half the baked cake. Cakes freeze well without any loss in taste or texture. I learnt this from some American blogs I read. They freeze everything – raw cookie dough to stews and more.
Anyway, last night I got into this cheese mood. I dug around my fridge and realised I had some mascarpone and some cream cheese. It was either tiramisu or a cheesecake.
I decided to make a cheesecake since I was dying for some creamy dessert. I usually bake after dinner so it was by 10pm or so that I started pulling out my springform pan.
The funny thing is this: I have always eaten great cheesecakes but never baked any until the last 2 years. No, I am not kidding. My aunt bakes a mean cheesecake with canned peaches. My sis bakes delicious blueberry cheese tarts.
My springform pan sat in my cabinet for a long time before I decided one day to just test out some cheesecake recipes. I guess I was inspired by a good friend’s cheesecake which she brought to a potluck party some time ago. I loved the creamy goodness of it all and gobbled a good many slices!
I love this recipe because I just need my measuring cups and my good old electric mixer (I still have my Elba handheld mixer – I want to get a stand mixer but I simply have no space in my kitchen for yet another kitchen appliance).
Actually a cheesecake is easy and quick to make. Let your cream cheese sit at room temperature for 1 hour before you start so the cheese is soft. I’d adjust the sugar and condensed milk quantities if you prefer it to be less sweet.
I used my own homemade vanilla extract (just slice up 2 vanilla pods, stick them in a glass bottle and pour in enough good quality vodka to cover the pods and let this sit in some dark cabinet for 4 weeks or so. You’ve just made your own vanilla extract. You’d NEVER buy the commercial stuff ever again, I swear). As you can see, I like homemade stuff (yogurt, for instance).
OK, enough blabbering.
Here’s the recipe. For the baking part, pre-heat your oven at 150C as you prepare the cake.
Chocolate Chip Cheesecake Recipe
1.5 cups graham cracker crumbs
1 tbsp white sugar (use brown sugar if you prefer less sweet)
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (I used Van Houten brand)
1/3 cup melted butter
Mix all the above and press into a 9 inch diameter springform pan. Leave aside.
250 gm cream cheese, at room temperature
400 ml condensed milk
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 tsp flour
1. Beat cream cheese with mixer until smooth. Gradually add condensed milk.
2. Add vanilla extract and eggs. Beat on medium speed till smooth.
3. Toss 1/3 of chocolate chips with flour. Pour this into cheese mix.
4. Pour mix into the cheesecake base. Sprinkle the rest of the chocolate chips on top.
5. Bake at 150C for 50 minutes to 1 hour. Turn off oven and leave cake to cool in oven for another hour.
Have a go at this recipe and let me know how it goes.
(But if you’re simply too buggered to bake a cheesecake, get some darn delicious slices from Moody Cow if you’re in Penang. Their salted egg yolk cheesecake is to die for. Parking is a terrible thing on Transfer Road so it’s best to go with a friend and you can hop into the shop and get your cheesecake fix.)
Next round, I’ll share my tiramisu recipe.