I’m going to tell you right away… I’m not a professional food blogger, baker or anything of the sort. My kitchen isn’t perfect. I don’t use fancy ingredients. I don’t always eat “clean” foods. My utensils aren’t brand new. I don’t take perfectly executed pictures of my meals. I just love food. Whether it’s pretty or not.
I’m someone who started multiple blogs at various points but never kept up with them. One blog I started was mainly just daily thoughts or frustrations I had to vent. Another was based on the ice creams I make that are versions of various adult drinks (margarita, irish car bomb, etc).
I just never kept them going. Life happens and I’m always busy with work and school.
I know. Sad face.
Enough about me… on to more important things…. like cheesecake. ;)
I made a chocolate covered raspberry amaretto cheesecake.
It looks, smells and tastes like h-e-a-v-e-n.
Unless you’re dieting… then don’t tempt yourself.
It’ll end badly…. and covered in chocolate and crumbs.
Sadly, when I got to the grocery store, the strawberries were very UNripe and unappealing. But the raspberries looked delicious so I decided to change the topping.
I also added liquor…. because…. well it’s liquor… duh.
and I have a habit of adding some kind of alcohol to ALL of my baking. You’re welcome.
40 nilla wafers, crushed (I used publix brand)
3 Tbsp butter, melted
2 (8 oz) pkgs cream cheese, softened
1 (8 oz) pkg neufchatel cheese, softened
3/4 cup sugar
1 Tbsp Frangelico liqueur
(I wanted to use amaretto but I was out. You could use your favorite liqueur)
1 (8 oz) pkg neufchatel cheese, softened
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp Frangelico liqueur (again, you could use anything)
1 (8 oz) tub Cool Whip (I used “extra creamy, with real cream”)
2 pints fresh raspberries
2 oz semi-sweet chocolate, melted
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Combine crushed nillas with melted butter until they smell and look all crumbly and delicious-like.
Yummm…. I may not be Paula Deen but I will ALWAYS bake with butter.
Right now, you wish you could smell this picture. Trust.
Then press all the crumbs into the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan.
Next, combine the cream cheese, neufchatel cheese, sugar and Frangelico until smooth.
Why do I use neufchatel cheese, you ask? I always try to use a mix of full-fat cream cheese and neufchatel cheese, which is about 1/3 of the fat content of regular. It really does taste the same but helps save a few calories. But at the same time, I don’t ever switch for 100% neufchatel because any good baker knows that fat, butter and calories make the result so sinfully wonderful.
Oh, and if your liqueur happens to spill over
accidentally and you use a little extra…. that’s totally acceptable. ;)
Then add the eggs, one at a time, and beat until smooth in between each egg.
Check out the beauty that is cheesecake batter when it’s ready to go into the pan….
Don’t worry if it’s not perfectly smooth. You don’t want to over beat it either.
I may or may not have folded in a little extra liqueur here. Because I felt like it. No measurements necessary.
When the batter is ready, pour it into the nilla-crustified pan. It won’t fill it up to the top- this is a good thing.
Now is your chance to lick the
bowl spoon. Go ahead. Do it.
Bake in the oven (center rack) for 40-50 mins. Until the middle is set.
I put mine in for 40 minutes because we just moved and I noticed this oven & stove runs pretty hot. It worked out pretty well. Especially considering this oven (for some unknown reason) has NO window.
See the little cracks? They’re okay. Trust me.
One way you can avoid huge cracks is to bake the whole cheesecake in a water bath. I didn’t do this for this recipe because you cover the top with mousse anyway. In my opinion, this makes it a great starter recipe for anyone who was afraid to make a cheesecake. Because no one will know if you have huge cracks!
Let the cheesecake cool slowly and let it cool all the way through. Keep it in the pan while it cools but run a knife around the edges to release it from the edges.
Personally, I let it cool on top of the oven vent in the stove so it cools a little slower (less cracking) but if you don’t have a vent or let it cool somewhere else, that’s totally fine!
After your delicious cheesecake cools, make the mousse.
Mix the last package of neufchatel cheese with sugar and liqueur until smooth.
Then whisk in Cool Whip until combined. I’ll say it again, don’t over mix. Why? Because the cool whip is already whipped and fluffy, silly billy.
If you’re like me, you’ll also take this opportunity to add a teensy bit more Frangelico.
Spread this fantastic mix on top of your already fabulous cheesecake.
Go ahead… lick the bowl. You know you want to.
Cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours. You can even refrigerate it overnight if necessary. This makes it easier to take to a party if the lengthy prep is done the day before.
After the whole cheesecake cools again, top with raspberries and drizzle with chocolate.
Confession… I was impatient and used regular Hershey’s chocolate syrup instead of melting semi-sweet chocolate chips. I’m sure it’s MUCH better with the real thing but I’ve been stressed and busy so this quick-fix just kinda happened…
Double confession: I don’t care that I took a shortcut. It was delicious.
Slice accordingly and serve to whomever you please.
Don’t forget yourself!
I really hope you liked this guest post and I hope I made the food bitch