Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Tuesday Tutor: Featuring In Katrina's Kitchen

Chocolate Chip Cookie Cheesecake


It's Tuesday again and high time I took a break from me and focused on someone else. Which is a lot more fun and rewarding than obsessing over myself. Or testing recipes over and over and over and over...

On Tuesdays, I feature an original recipe from another blogger: I make the recipe following the author's directions, I snap a few pictures, I taste the result - and I share everything I love about the recipe.


My tutor today was the ever-baking-something-amazing Katrina from In Katrina's Kitchen blog. If you've got a sweet tooth and a hankering for a creative take on desserts, Katrina has an seemingly inexhaustible supply of accessible yet impressive recipes for you to try. What especially love about In Katrina's Kitchen is that no recipe is a hum-drum, run-of-the-mill version, but rather a fun and over-the-top celebration of decadent desserts. No matter the special moment you're celebrating, you really should stop by In Katrina's Kitchen to find inspiration.

About the Author: 5 Fun Facts
  1. "I have been baking for the people I love for as long as I can remember. I started my blog one year ago on a whim to share some of my recipes with family and friends."
     
  2. "I am in love with guacamole. In. Love."
     
  3. "My husband and I are high school sweethearts. He's 6'5" and I'm an even 5 feet. People stare."
     
  4. "My youngest brother is 20 years younger than me; the other is 10 years younger."
     
  5. "I can't draw so I make pretty things with paper and stickers and stamps. Mostly I just like to buy the supplies."

Author's Photo

Maybe it's just me, but I had to try this combination of utter decadence that is chocolate chip cookie cheesecake. Let's be honest, who doesn't love chocolate chip cookies? Or cheesecake? And together is just heaven... Even better, the cheesecake is an easy no-bake variety and the cookie crust couldn't be simpler. To be fair, I cheated and attempted an even easier version of Katrina's original recipe by making one giant cheesecake instead of six individual ones - but the concept is still so easy anyone could make this. Which is the kind of illusive simplicity we all search for.

Katrina warned me in advance that this recipe tends to split fans into two groups - those who love, love, love it and those who don't love it quite so much. It's a very rich and sweet dessert - and it really tastes best after chilling in the refrigerator for at least a day. So make it in advance and put a chain on the fridge and throw away the key to stop yourself from digging an hour after you make it! Yes, I could not restrain myself.

Original recipe courtesy of In Katrina's Kitchen


Katrina's original recipe says to use 6 mini springform pans.
Not possessing these pans, I decided to make half the recipe
in one standard size springform pan instead. Fortunately, it worked.

Bringing ingredients to room temp.
The warmest spot in my kitchen is in front of the fridge

Because I cut the recipe in half, I only put 1 cup
of chocolate chips into the cookie crust

Measured my flour and leveners - fortunately,
both cookie and filling recipes were easy to cut in half

These cookies really are easy: sugar...

...butter...

...flour, levener, vanilla and chocolate chips

Just cream together the butter and sugars

Until it looks something like this
I tend to obsess over this stage of cookie-making

Gradually add the flour and levener

Toss in chips and vanilla - and voila! Cookie batter!

And I forgot to grease my cake pan
I recommend using a coating of shortening to ensure
the crust pops out nicely at the end

Ready to bake @ 350 degrees for 25 minutes

I recommend letting the cookie get a bit crusty around the edges and top
It really makes for a lovely contrast against the creamy filling

I know Katrina's recipe said to make the whipped cream in a separate bowl
But I wanted to use my stand mixer, so I made the whipped cream first

Just whipped cream on high-speed until this was achieved
Then transferred whipped cream to a another bowl

I didn't pay close enough attention to the recipe
and added all the filling ingredients at once. Fortunately,
the recipe was forgiving and the filling turned out fine

I recommend fresh lemon juice. I used one little squeeze.

I used the paddle attachment on my stand mixer to beat together the filling

As you can see, the cheesecake filling was a wee bit skimpy
If you love the filling, you may not want to cut it in half as I did

I covered my cheesecake directly on top with plastic wrap
Then chilled 3 hours before digging in ;)

Since this was one enormous cheesecake instead of 6 minis,
I used full-size chocolate chips instead of the mini variety

The best part - I didn't need a fork! I could just pick it up and
gobble down slice after slice like pizza! ::e-hem::


Thoughts while scarfing...
  • The cookie crust is amazing! It's crispy, crunchy and the perfect balance to the tang of the cheesecake filling. I may have to explore other uses for this crust!
     
  • If you don't love cream cheese, this recipe is not for you. If you don't love chocolate chip cookies, this recipe is not for you. I love cream cheese and cheesecake (and adding a little cookie to something has never bothered me), so I loved this dessert. My boyfriend is less of a fan of cream cheese, and thus preferred a smaller slice
     
  • If you're a HUGE fan of cream cheese and you decide to make one giant cheesecake instead of six mini's, you may not want to halve the cheesecake filling portion of the recipe. I found there was plenty of cookie crust, but the filling was a little skimpy
     
  • I know it's tough to resist something this decadent for more than 2-3 hours, but you really, REALLY should restrain yourself for at least 24 hours as I felt the flavors in the cheesecake were much better the second day. The lemon and vanilla have a chance to really infuse the cream cheese and the overall texture of the filing is more satisfying

Other Must-Try Recipes from In Katrina's Kitchen
Maybe outrageous decadence isn't your thing. But I guarantee you'll find something scrumptious In Katrina's Kitchen. Check out these mouth-watering eats and tell me you're not inspired!


Homemade Girl Scout Cookies: Thin Mints
Soft Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies
Peanut Butter Truffle Mousse Cheesecake
Cookie Dough Magic Shell Ice Cream Topping
Cookie Monster Cookies


4 comments:

  1. Thank you so much for featuring me and making the cheesecake! I'm happy you liked the results- now I'm tempted to make a BIG one myself ;) NOM!

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    Replies
    1. It was my pleasure (a whole cheesecake's worth!) and the big version really was simple. But you might not want to halve the cheesecake filling portion...

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  2. That looked so good! I really want a spring form pan...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love my spring form pan - I just don't use it enough ;)

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