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The Daring Bakers’ Challenge: Caramel Macchiato Swirl Cheesecake April 27, 2009

Filed under: Baking,Cheesecake,The Daring Bakers' — pastrybrush @ 7:00 am
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daring-bakersThe April 2009 challenge is hosted by Jenny from Jenny Bakes. She has chosen Abbey’s Infamous Cheesecake as the challenge.  For this challenge we were given a basic recipe and were given free reign to spice it up, changing the flavor, crust, etc.  I knew that I wanted to do something with espresso flavoring, but I figured an entire cheesecake might be a little overpowering.  I was stuck between two different flavor combinations: Caramel Mocha Cheesecake or Caramel Macchiato Cheesecake.  In the end, I went with the Caramel Macchiato Cheesecake because Tuesdays with Dorie is currently have a month of chocolate recipes and I needed a small break.

At first I wanted to do the cheesecake in two distinct layers, an espresso layer and a vanilla layer.  In the end this didn’t work out as planning and I just swirled them together 🙂  I made a caramel sauce which I used to drizzel on the top of the cheesecake in a crosshatch pattern and then added whipped cream rosettes for an added bonus because who doesn’t like whipped cream on cheesecake 🙂

This was probably one of the best cheesecakes I have ever made.  It turned out perfect.  I really couldn’t believe that I didn’t have any cracking or sinking.  The texture was smooth and creamy.  The flavor was spot on and awesome.

100_2098Abbey’s Infamous Cheesecake:

Revised by Pastrybrush to make Caramel Macchiato Cheesecake

Crust:
3 1/2 cups Golden Oreo Cookie Crumbs
1 stick / 4 oz butter, melted
2 tbsp. / 24 g sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract

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
1 tbsp. lemon juice

1-2 tbsp instant espresso powder
1 tbsp. vanilla extract (or the innards of a vanilla bean)

Caramel Sauce (recipe below)

Whipped Cream

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 (9 inch spring form 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. Dissolve the espresso powder in 1 tbsp heavy cream. Divide the batter into two bowls. To one of the bowls add the espresso powder cream and mix until thoroughly combined. Pour the espresso mixture on top of the prepared crust, smooth the top. Then pour the rest of the batter on top of the espresso mixture and smooth the top (or swirl it in). 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.

100_2096Caramel Sauce Recipe

Source: Elise of Simple Recipes

Ingredients

1 cup of sugar

6 Tbsp butter

1/2 cup heavy whipping cream

Method

1 First, before you begin, make sure you have everything ready to go – the cream and the butter next to the pan, ready to put in. Making caramel is a fast process that cannot wait for hunting around for ingredients. If you don’t work fast, the sugar will burn. Safety first – make sure there are no children under foot and you may want to wear oven mitts; the caramelized sugar will be much hotter than boiling water.

2 Heat sugar on moderately high heat in a heavy-bottomed 2-quart or 3-quart saucepan. As the sugar begins to melt, stir vigorously with a whisk or wooden spoon. As soon as the sugar comes to a boil, stop stirring. You can swirl the pan a bit if you want, from this point on. Note that this recipe works best if you are using a thick-bottomed pan. If you find that you end up burning some of the sugar before the rest of it is melted, the next time you attempt it, add a half cup of water to the sugar at the beginning of the process, this will help the sugar to cook more evenly, though it will take longer as the water will need to evaporate before the sugar will caramelize.

3 As soon as all of the sugar crystals have melted (the liquid sugar should be dark amber in color), immediately add the butter to the pan. Whisk until the butter has melted.

4 Once the butter has melted, take the pan off the heat. Count to three, then slowly add the cream to the pan and continue to whisk to incorporate. Note than when you add the butter and the cream, the mixture will foam up considerably. This is why you must use a pan that is at least 2-quarts (preferably 3-quarts) big. (Check here for an explanation of why adding the cream makes the mixture bubble up so much.)

5 Whisk until caramel sauce is smooth. Let cool in the pan for a couple minutes, then pour into a glass mason jar and let sit to cool to room temperature. (Remember to use pot holders when handling the jar filled with hot caramel sauce.) Store in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. Warm before serving.

Makes a little over one cup of sauce.

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12 Responses to “The Daring Bakers’ Challenge: Caramel Macchiato Swirl Cheesecake”

  1. jo Says:

    Wow, the flavours sound wonderful .. a cuppa in a cheesecake! Great job!

  2. Amanda Says:

    That looks amazing!

  3. Sweet Pea Says:

    Beautiful! And the caramel sauce looks heavenly.

  4. Ugghhh, I may have to make Abby’s Infamous Cheesecake again just to get to taste this….love, LOVE caramel macchiatos…

  5. Namratha Says:

    Looks delicious, nicely decorated.

  6. Caitlin Says:

    I really like the swirl – caramel macchiattos were my gateway coffee 🙂

  7. pinkstripes Says:

    Genius!!! I love it.

  8. asti Says:

    Love the flavour combo.. especially with the caramel stripes 🙂

  9. teaandscones Says:

    Beautiful cheese cake. The swirl. The caramel. The whipped cream. PERFECT!!!!!

  10. JennyBakes Says:

    Oh how I love the caramel grid on top, and caramel macchiato must have tasted divine. I’m glad you liked the recipe.

    Thanks for being a part of the April Daring Bakers Challenge!

    Jenny of JennyBakes

  11. Alison Says:

    beautiful cheesecake!


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