Monthly Archives: November 2012

Cheesecake Cake is Way Better than Cake Cake!

So it turns out that making the German Chocolate Cheesecake Cake for my best friend becoming a Doctor has inspired me to make more cheesecake cakes! I had a serious chocolate craving Sunday so decided that layering dark chocolate cheesecake with a brownie cake all inside of a chocolate pretzel crust would certainly satisfy it! I didn’t want to eat an entire cake to myself (sadly this has been known to happen on more than one occasion), so wanted to incorporate another element besides chocolate so Josh would help me out! I don’t think he’d be as big of a fan as me if I topped the entire cake with a rich chocolate frosting…so I went with the always pleasing, never-failing peanut butter frosting I use frequently! In retrospect, I should have done half and half, next time!

Chocolate Pretzel Crust:

  • 1 1/2 cups salted pretzels, processed to crumbs
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 stick butter, melted
  • 2 ounces dark chocolate, melted

Dark Chocolate Cheesecake:

  • 2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, room temp
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 t vanilla
  • 2 eggs, room temp
  • 3 ounces dark chocolate, melted and cooled (I went with Ghiradelli on this one)!

Brownie Cake:

  • 3/4 cup butter
  • 3 ounces chocolate
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 t vanilla
  • 3/4 cup flour
  • dash of salt

First, mix pretzel crumbs with sugar, then add in melted butter. Mix until well combined. Add in melted chocolate and mix again until thoroughly combined. Press into the bottom and up the sides of a 9-inch springform pan. Try to get the crust as high up the sides of the pan as possible (at least 3 inches is ideal). Put in fridge while making the cheesecake. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. In medium bowl, beat together cream cheese until fluffy. Add in sugar and beat until combined. Add in vanilla and eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add in melted, cooled chocolate, mixing to combine then pour over crust. Bake for 45 minutes or until center is still wobbly but edges are cooked. Let cool in pan on wire rack. For brownie cake, melt butter and chocolate together either in a double boiler over simmering water or in the microwave. When melted, let cool slightly, then whisk in sugar until completely dissolved. Add in eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add in vanilla then salt and flour. Beat until flour is just combined (over-mixing will yield a tough brownie/cake). Pour into a greased 9-inch round pan and bake for 30 minutes. Let cool on wire rack 10-15 minutes before removing from pan. Turn cake onto rack and let cool completely.

Make frosting while cakes cool. When cool enough to frost, add 1/3 of the frosting to the top of the cheesecake, then top with the brownie cake. Then frost the entire top and sides of the brownie cake. Let chill in fridge at least a few hours, overnight is ideal but I was way to impatient and the craving was way to strong for me to wait that long!

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Becoming a Doctor Warrants One Amazing Cake!

My best friend Em became a Doctor last Thursday! She graduated with her Doctorate in Pharmacology after nearly 12 years of school!! As you can imagine, a celebration was in full effect…and of course, if I am involved, any celebration requires a dessert of some kind! Em’s favorite cake is German Chocolate, which I have made in the past for her so wanted to do something a little different…German Chocolate Cake with a twist! I layered a cake on top of a cheesecake, filled it with some frosting and baked it in a crust…sounds fancy I know, but well worth it!

German Chocolate Cheesecake Cake:

German Chocolate Cake:

1 pkg. (4 oz.) German Chocolate
½ cup water
4 eggs, separated
2 cups flour
1 t baking soda
¼ t salt
1 cup butter, softened
2 cups sugar
1 t vanilla
1 cup buttermilk

Coconut Pecan Frosting:

4 egg yolks
1 can (12 oz.) evaporated milk
1-1/2 t vanilla
1-1/2 cups sugar
¾ cup butter or margarine
1 pkg. (7 oz.)  coconut (2-2/3 cups)
1-1/2 cups chopped pecans

German Chocolate Cheesecake:

2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 t vanilla
2 eggs
3 ounces German Chocolate, melted and cooled

Crust:

1 package oreos, crumbed in food processor
1 stick butter

Ganache:

1/3 cup heavy cream
5 ounces German Chocolate

Directions: Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.  For the crust, combine melted butter with oreo crumbs, mix until combined enough to press and hold together. Press into a 9-inch springform pan, and at least 3 inches up the sides (this is important, to hold the cake together some what…I used a flat sided round glass to keep pushing the mixture up the sides, it was a little tedious but worked. Once ready, put in fridge to cool while you make the ganache and cheesecake.

For the ganache, which isn’t necessary, but certainly adds a little more decadence to this already heavenly creation! Place chopped chocolate in a bowl and heat the heavy cream in a small saucepan until hot but not boiling.  Once warm enough, pour over chocolate and let sit 1-2 minutes. Whisk until chocolate melts. Pour over the crust and put back in the fridge to continue cooling while you make the cheesecake.

For the cheesecake, melt the chocolate in a double boiler or in the microwave and set aside to cool. In a large bowl, beat cream cheese until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add in sugar, beat until combined. Add in vanilla then eggs one at a time. Finally, beat in melted, cooled chocolate and mix until combined. Pour into prepared crust, atop the ganache. Bake 45 minutes.

Next, make the German Chocolate Cake.  Grease another 9-inch round pan with cooking spray very well. Microwave chocolate and water in large microwaveable bowl on high 1-1/2 to 2 min. or until chocolate is almost melted, stirring after 1 min. Stir until chocolate is completely melted. Beat egg whites in small bowl with mixer on high-speed until stiff peaks form; set aside. Mix flour, baking soda and salt. Beat butter and sugar in large bowl with mixer until light and fluffy. Add egg yolks, 1 at a time, beating well after each. Blend in melted chocolate and vanilla. Add flour mixture alternately with buttermilk, beating until well blended after each addition. Add egg whites; stir gently until well blended. Pour into prepared pan. Bake 40 min. or until toothpick inserted in centers comes out clean.  Cool cake in pan 15 min.; remove to wire rack and cool completely. This cake baked up pretty thick so I ended up cutting off about 1/3 of the top (I had to flatten the top for layering purposes anyways so just took off a bit more cake so that it was the same size as the cheesecake).

For the coconut pecan frosting, in a large saucepan, beat egg yolks, milk and vanilla with whisk until well blended. Add sugar and butter; cook on medium heat about 12 minutes or until thickened and golden brown, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Add coconut and nuts; mix well. Cool to desired spreading consistency, mine took about 15 minutes in the fridge.

Now to assemble the masterpiece…Spread about 1/2 of the coconut frosting on top of the cheesecake. Gently place the cake layer on top of the filling and then finish by frosting the entire top and sides of the cake part only. You do not need to frost the crumb layer on the side, just the cake portion! Let sit in fridge at least 3 hours but overnight is ideal!

Layers of goodness!