Monday, April 27, 2009

Wwwwwwhat's Up Doc!?

The April 2009 challenge is hosted by Jenny from Jenny Bakes. She has chosen Abbey's Infamous Cheesecake as the challenge.Well, almost! The next time I post a Daring Bakers' Challenge, I will be a doctor...cookie doc will be a doc. AMAZING! Really, the reason I used that as the title is the addition to my cheesecake. Can you guess what it is? I haven't been able to go home for Easter for the past three years, and the past two years have not spent it with my family. However, this year, I am teaching college Sunday School and we hosted a pot luck lunch for the students who couldn't go home; so, I was able to spend it with "family" anyway! I took a broccoli salad (which I will post later...it is delicious and I was asked for the recipe) and this cheesecake. I wanted to do something special and thought for a while. I decided to make it a carrot cake cheesecake. Basically, I just added carrots and spices to the crust. Then I used walnuts and a glaze over the filling. I was pleased, though you really couldn't tell that much difference with the richness of the cheesecake. However, when I tasted JUST the crust, it definitely tasted like carrot cake! I'm not sure if it was the addition of the carrots, using more butter than I'm used to using, or mixing the crust in the food processor...but it was just a big clump...more like a dough than a graham cracker crust. I'm sure the moisture from the carrots helped but I didn't even used all of the butter and it was just too sticky...I think I would suggest just slowly pouring in the butter until it reaches a consistency you're comfortable with. If you've only used half, then go with it...I didn't and had a much denser crust that I think a cheesecake should have. It still tasted good! For the filling I followed the recipe exactly (with the exception of using half and half...but that was only because I thought it was heavy cream and it wasn't!). Though it was a good cheesecake, it won't be the recipe I use on a regular basis. Despite only using 3 eggs (not much IMO for a cheesecake) it tasted pretty eggy and just wasn't my favorite. Not that it was bad...I left the Easter lunch with NONE left! Just prior to cooking, I sprinkled some chopped walnuts on the top. Then, after it all cooled, I poured a bit of a simple glaze over the top just to add a little more carrot cake quality to it. All in all, this was a great challenge and resulted in a very yummy dessert! Thanks to Jenny for a great challenge!

Abbey's Infamous Cheesecake:

crust (with my changes):
2 cups / 180 g graham cracker crumbs
about 15-20 baby carrots, chopped in food processor until tiny!
1/2 stick / 2 oz butter, melted
2 tbsp. / 24 g sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp cinnamon
sprinkle nutmeg

cheesecake:
3 sticks of cream cheese, 8 oz each (total of 24 oz) room temperature
1 cup / 210 g sugar
3 large eggs
1 cup / 8 oz heavy cream (half and half)
1 tbsp. lemon juice
1 tbsp. vanilla extract (or the innards of a vanilla bean)
walnut, sprinkled on top

DIRECTIONS:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (Gas Mark 4 = 180C = Moderate heat). Begin to boil a large pot of water for the water bath.

2. Mix together the crust ingredients and press into your preferred pan. You can press the crust just into the bottom, or up the sides of the pan too - baker's choice. Set crust aside.

3. Combine cream cheese and sugar in the bowl of a stand-mixer (or in a large bowl if using a hand-mixer) and cream together until smooth. Add eggs, one at a time, fully incorporating each before adding the next. Make sure to scrape down the bowl in between each egg. Add heavy cream, vanilla, lemon juice, and alcohol and blend until smooth and creamy.

4. Pour batter into prepared crust and tap the pan on the counter a few times to bring all air bubbles to the surface. Place pan into a larger pan and pour boiling water into the larger pan until halfway up the side of the cheesecake pan. If cheesecake pan is not airtight, cover bottom securely with foil before adding water.*

5. Bake 45 to 55 minutes, until it is almost done - this can be hard to judge, but you're looking for the cake to hold together, but still have a lot of jiggle to it in the center. You don't want it to be completely firm at this stage. Close the oven door, turn the heat off, and let rest in the cooling oven for one hour. This lets the cake finish cooking and cool down gently enough so that it won't crack on the top. After one hour, remove cheesecake from oven and lift carefully out of water bath. Let it finish cooling on the counter, and then cover and put in the fridge to chill. Once fully chilled, it is ready to serve.

*I didn't put my pan IN the water because I didn't have a pan large enough to hold my springform! No cracks resulted...success!

38 comments:

Elle said...

Carrot cake crust is an excellent idea Claire! Getting to be a doctor by the next challenge is awesome!! You've worked very hard to get there and I'm sure you will be a wonderful doc. This is the perfect cheesecake for Easter, too.

Pearl said...

carrot cake cheesecake? that's the first time i've heard of it - what a creative recipe!

Angela @ A Spoonful of Sugar said...

What a great idea for a cheesecake! I love it! (And perfect for an Easter meal, too :) )

Sara said...

Cool idea to do a carrot cake cheesecake...sounds delicious! :)

Em said...

How creative! It looks super delicious too. :)

hexe said...

What a creative idea! I had never heard of a carrot cake crust. Sounds yummy!

Dragon said...

Your cheesecake is lovely. Great job on this month's challenge.

CRUISNDIVA said...

I love carrot cake but never had it in cheesecake form. What a great idea! Good Job!

PheMom said...

What a cool idea! Super creative!

Shelly said...

Very cool idea, Claire, and it looks delicious! I absolutely love carrot cake, so I'd love a taste of this :)

Megan said...

I would of never thought carrot cake flavor. Your creativity is shining through!
Congrats on the doctor gig. I bet you will serve the Lord well in your calling! :)

lisamichele said...

Finally, someone who made a carrot 'cake' cheesecake! Yours looks incredible and I can almost taste it when I look at your photos! Great job!

wütende Bäckerfrau said...

Whoa that looks good, definitely creative. Great job!

pixie said...

Wow that sounds so interesting! When I saw the top photo I thought you used passionfruit! I would love to taste your version! Great idea!

April said...

Oh my gosh!! this looks delicious!!!

Laura said...

Carrot cake cheesecake is a great idea! I'm definately going to try that next time I make something for my mum as her two fave deserts are carrot cake and cheesecake! Thanks for the fab idea

LegalAlien said...

Very interesting choice!
And very nice pictures!

tina said...

What a wonderful idea! Great looking cake!

Andreas said...

Very nice cake.
I like the idea of added walnuts.

Annie said...

The combination sounds wonderful since I enjoy both!

What an exiting bit of news on becoming a doctor by you next challenge. Congrats!!!!

Deseree said...

What a creative take on this recipe! Congrats on becoming a doctor! What a great accomplishment :)

Barbara Bakes said...

Congratulations on becoming a Doc! The world definitely needs more caring doctors who can also cook! The cheesecake sounds yummy!

JMom said...

Congratulations, Doc! This was the only second mention of carrot cake crust that I saw from the Daring Bakers. I think that is such a great idea that I think I'll try it out next time. We love carrot cake with cream cheese frosting, so why not a cheesecake topping, right?

Heather said...

What a great twist on the recipe! Congrats to you Doc!

Cate O'Malley said...

I can't believe you're going to be official soon - how exciting! The cheesecake looks grand!

Holly said...

Your cheesecake sounds awesome!

isa said...

You are very creative.

It’s a very great idea for a cheesecake!

newlyweds said...

Carrot cake, and excellent idea. Also congrats on being a Doctor. Seriously that is amazing, congrats to you.

Jenny said...

Now that's the most unique variation I've seen so far, very nice.
And congrats!

ice tea: sugar high said...

wow.. that's a first for me too. Very interesting. Congrats on becoming a doctor!!

Chantal said...

Lovely idea!

Jennifer said...

Congratulations! You really should be proud of all your hard work. That's fantastic!

Abby said...

YUM. What a great idea. And I LOVE the walnuts on top.

And congrats on becoming a doctor soon! What a fabulous accomplishment.

In Definition said...

claire. wow. are you graduating?!?! already?!!! where's residency?

Bread and Jam said...

This was a really great idea for a cheesecake! And, hey, you're getting your vegetables this way. :)

Katrina said...

What a great idea. I would have never thought of carrot cake and cheesecake together, but it makes tons of sense since carrot cake has a cream cheese frosting. Looks great!

Jenny said...

I like this carrot cake idea! Thanks for being a part of the April Daring Baker's Challenge!

Jenny of JennyBakes

Michael and Kenna said...

Yum, carrot cake is my favorite! Good idea to apply it to this challenge!