Wow! It has been a while since I posted something on here. Two weeks to be exact! I will not bore you with the details of how the flu got the better of me for a whole solid week (two weeks ago). Last week, I was still sort of finding my groove back … slowly!
I have a few recipes to share actually but one at a time. Let me start with this cheesecake, which was the last treat I made before I got horribly sick. And no, I did not get sick because of cooking, rather from the 4-hour coastal walk I did a couple of Saturdays ago. Long story short, the weather wasn’t so kind to me then. Anyway, back to the cheesecake!
I came across this recipe online a couple of weeks before I actually made this. Such a pretty picture of this cheesecake featured in almost all the cooking pages I follow on Facebook. I wasn’t really keen on making it at first for the reason that it is one of those cheesecakes which need patience before you can see the result. I wasn’t really feeling very patient then and was thinking, I’d just save it for some special occasion. Then a friend of mine posted the recipe on my timeline and asked me if I wanna give it a try. I thought hmm … why not? It’s October, my birthday month so why not? And I remembered one of my good friends here celebrated his birthday and he happens to love cheesecake. Any encouragement and excuse for me to make this cheesecake will do so here you go James, belated happy birthday!
Now if you see the photo of the cheesecake from the website where I got the recipe from, my meringues were not as pointy as those. The reason? I have issues with piping bags and nozzles! Not just one of those baking skills I am good at. Need to practice a lot really!
I also prepared the meringues different from the recipe method. I don’t have a blow torch so instead of caramelising the meringues using a blow torch, I piped the meringues on a lined baking tray and caramelised them in the oven instead. Worked just as fine.Ingredients
- Melted butter, to grease
- 400g plain chocolate biscuits
- 150g butter, melted
- 5g butter, extra
- 260g Dark Cooking Chocolate, finely chopped
- 150g White Cooking Chocolate, finely chopped
- 375g cream cheese, at room temperature
- 100g (1/2 cup) caster sugar
- 310ml (11/4 cups) thickened cream
- 1 1/2 tbs hot water
- 3 tsp gelatine powder
Salted peanut caramel
- 315g (11/2 cups) caster sugar
- 185ml (3/4 cup) water
- 250ml (1 cup) double cream
- 120g (3/4 cup) salted roasted peanuts, coarsely chopped
- 315g (1 1/2 cups) caster sugar
- 60ml (1/4 cup) water
- 4 egg whites, at room temperature
- Pinch of cream of tartar
1. Release the base from a 6cm-deep, 22cm (base measurement) springform pan and invert. Brush with butter. Line the base with non-stick baking paper, allowing the edge to overhang. Secure the base back into the pan.
2. Process the biscuits in a food processor until finely crushed. Add the butter and process until well combined. Transfer to the prepared pan. Use a straight-sided glass to spread and press the mixture firmly over the base and side. Place in the fridge to chill.3. To make the salted peanut caramel, stir the sugar and water in a large saucepan over low heat for 5 minutes or until the sugar dissolves. Increase heat to high. Bring to the boil. Boil, without stirring, brushing down the side of the pan occasionally with a wet pastry brush, for 18-20 minutes or until deep golden. Remove from heat. Stir in the cream. Place over medium heat. Cook, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes. Set aside for 30 minutes to cool. Stir in peanuts. Spoon over the biscuit base. Smooth the surface. Place in the fridge for 3 hours or until firm.4. Place the extra butter and 60g of the dark chocolate in a small microwave-safe bowl. Cook, stirring every 30 seconds, on High/ 800watts/100% for 11/2 minutes or until melted and smooth. Spread over the caramel to cover. Set aside for 10 minutes to set.5. Stir the white chocolate in a small heatproof bowl over a saucepan half-filled with simmering water (make sure the bowl doesn’t touch the water) until smooth. Set aside for 5 minutes to cool slightly.
6. Process the cream cheese, sugar and 185ml (3/4 cup) of the cream in a food processor until smooth. Add the white chocolate and process until well combined.7. Place the hot water in a small heatproof bowl and sprinkle with the gelatine. Place bowl in a slightly larger heatproof bowl filled with boiling water. Set aside, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes or until the gelatine dissolves. Remove smaller bowl from larger bowl and set aside for 5 minutes to cool slightly. add to cream cheese mixture. Process until well combined. Pour cream cheese mixture over dark chocolate. Cover pan with plastic wrap and place in fridge for 4 hours to set.8. Stir remaining dark chocolate and cream in a saucepan over low heat until smooth. Pour over cheesecake. Place in the fridge for 1 hour to set.9. Meanwhile, to make the Italian meringue, stir the sugar and water in a saucepan over low heat until sugar dissolves, brushing down the side of the pan with a wet pastry brush to prevent sugar crystals forming. Increase heat to medium-high. Cook, without stirring, for 3-5 minutes or until the mixture reaches 115°C (soft ball stage). While the syrup continues to cook, use an electric beater to whisk egg whites and cream of tartar in a bowl until soft peaks form. When the syrup reaches 120°C (hard ball stage) and with the beater on low speed, gradually add syrup to egg white mixture. Increase speed to high. Whisk for 15 minutes or until thick, glossy and cool.
10. To caramelise meringues: If you have a blow torch, spoon meringue into a piping bag fitted with a 1cm round nozzle and pipe peaks on top of cake. Use a blowtorch to caramelise the meringue. If you do not have a blow torch like myself, you can pipe meringues on a lined baking tray and bake them in the oven for 40-45 minutes at 160C degrees. When they are done, just place them on top of the cheesecake.
Recipe from Taste.com.au