Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake c-w

I am going to say something controversial which will probably cause you to lose all respect for me. Ready? Here goes:

Cheesecake is really not my bag.

I mean, I don't hate it per se, it's just that when the choice comes to cheesecake or chocolate cake I'm always going to choose the chocolate cake. Even when it's a case of cheesecake versus say lemon meringue pie (oh be still my citrus-y heart!) or carrot cake, the cheesecake will always come second. Heresy? Perhaps. 

{Interjection: Check out how the words "cheesecake" aligns to the left of the above paragraph. Not planned - promise!}

But you should also know that as soon as I saw Nigella making this on tv, I couldn't stop thinking about it. In fact, I didn't hesitate to furiously scribble down all the ingredients in between lusting after the luscious peanut-buttery goodness presented to me on the screen. Never have I adored a screen so.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake b2-w

So, what exactly was so special about this particular cheesecake, you ask? Erm... do you even have to ask? Let's put it like this: when a recipe starts off with 100g (that's about 3 oz for my US peeps) chocolate for the base of a cake, you know you're in for trouble. And if you're smart, you will also realise that all resistance is futile. This recipe so haunted my thoughts, that I went out and bought the ingredients and made the cake on the same day. Same day people! If you know me, you'll know that says quite a lot about a recipe. 

Sadly for me, I couldn't eat the cake on the same day. I had to wait for it to set overnight. Oh and for TheHusband to return home. See, I'm considerate like that. But I can tell you that no lick of batter remained in the mixing bowl. I'm not ashamed to admit that I even gave up the pretense of a spoon or finger for "cleaning" purposes and jumped straight ahead to the "licking directly out of the bowl" action. Yup, it's *that* good. 

And when I finally did have a slice? I gobbled that bad boy up. Before supper. And I would've gone for a second slice if it wasn't so damn rich. I don't think I'll ever again be able to profess my meh attitude towards cheesecake. At least, not with a clear conscience. Not after Nigella got hold of me.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake d-w
Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake
Adapted from Nigella's Kitchen
Serves 10

100g dark chocolate
50g butter
200g digestive biscuits (or cookies as we call 'em), crushed
50g peanuts, finely chopped

500g (approx 17 oz) creamcheese (lowfat is fine), at room temperature
3 eggs
3 egg yolks
200g (scant 1 cup) brown sugar
125ml (1/2 cup) sour cream
250g (scant 1 cup) smooth peanut butter

125ml (1/2 cup) sour cream
100g milk chocolate
100g peanut brittle, broken up

1. Firstly, preheat the oven to 180C. For the base, melt the chocolate and butter together over low heat in a medium sized saucepan. Stir to ensure the chocolate melts evenly. Remove from heat and add crushed biscuits and nuts, mixing thoroughly. Transfer to an oiled springform cake tin and press down gently to form a thick crust. Place in the freezer to set while you prepare the filling.
2. For the filling, mix together all the ingredients in a large bowl, whisking at high speed with a automatic blender until smooth and creamy.
3. Remove base from the freezer and pour filling over the top. Bake for 30 minutes at 180C, then lower heat to 170C and bake another 20 minutes. Remove from oven, then proceed to make the topping. 
4. For the topping, melt chocolate and sour cream together in a small saucepan over medium heat, then pour over the cheesecake. Return to the oven for five minutes before scattering the peanut brittle pieces over the top. Finally return to the oven for another five minutes.
5. Remove from oven and allow to cool down (in the tin) until it has reached room temperature. Transfer to the fridge and chill overnight. Remove from spring form and serve. Will keep in the fridge for a few days.


Peter M on March 02, 2011 1:28 am said...

This cheesecake is outstanding! You've combined the natural pairing of chocolate & peanut butter and slipped it into a cheesecake!

vanillasugarblog on March 02, 2011 1:34 am said...

good lord.
this is just genius.

Kitchenboy on March 02, 2011 2:57 am said...

It looks gorgeous!

Joanne on March 02, 2011 5:25 am said...

I would blame the chocolate and peanut butter combo. It does crazy things to people. Takes hold of their minds and brainwashes them. I speak from experience.

This cake is gorgeous!

Jessica on March 02, 2011 8:31 am said...

Damn you and your early morning delicious cheesecake! I love cheesecake but I don't think I could ever bring myself to bake one because I'd probably eat the whole thing myself (especially this one...)
The cheesecake looks beautiful on the brown paper with the ribbon, lovely styling!

Cherine on March 02, 2011 9:43 am said...

My gosh, I'm drooling here!
This cheesecake is divine!!

Alida on March 02, 2011 10:04 am said...

I am literally dying here! How am I meant to function for the rest of the day with the image of this Cheesecake in my mind? Damn you! ;)

Sam on March 02, 2011 10:14 am said...

Jeez that topping looks delicious!

Colleen on March 02, 2011 11:39 am said...

EEEEEEK!!!! *shuts eyes and runs out* Oh my word...this is just up my alley Im afraid to say. I love cheesecake....and chocolate cake....and carrot cake.....and lemon meringue LOL! I also have Nigellas recipe and have been contemplating making it...Will have to do it sometime soon now. Love the peanut brittle topping you added. Beautiful styling and photies. Well done xx

Mika on March 02, 2011 11:57 am said...

This cheesecake is so rich...all those peanuts...wonderful...
I'm not a big fan of cheesecakes too but this seems to gorgeous to not give it a try...

Ishay on March 02, 2011 3:46 pm said...

This is so beautiful! What a combo. You are a baker, a damn good one! Love it x

Linda Harding on March 02, 2011 3:47 pm said...

For the love of chocolate, those are the most beautiful pictures I've seen to date! That cake is pure art. I'm literally unable to comment on anything I read as my eyes won't let me, they're glued to that cake. Marisa, I've said it before but I am compelled to say it again: YOUR FOOD STYLING IS BEYOND BEAUTIFUL!

Jo on March 02, 2011 4:03 pm said...

Oh my golly gosh... your cheesecake has brought a tear to my eye. I simply cannot go on without trying out this recipe. Amazing photos, delicious idea, thanks!

Michelle @ Greedy Gourmet on March 02, 2011 4:18 pm said...

Blerrie bliksem. Just looking at this decadent cake made me put on 10kg. Looks divine!

arcadia on March 02, 2011 4:26 pm said...

Hel, ek hou nie eens van grondboontjiebotter nie, en ek is besig om te salivate. Dit lyk beautiful!

Cool Chic Style Fashion on March 02, 2011 5:39 pm said...

Bellissima torta ♥ ciao e complimenti

Anonymous said...

This looks awesome. Cheesecake is one of my husband's favorite desserts, but I've only tried to make it once--it poofed up and then cracked in half, and I've been afraid of re-attempting it ever since! Pathetic, I know, especially since I pride myself on being adventuresome in the kitchen. I'll have to give it another go, because it tastes like heaven.
Your pictures are beautiful! I love the ribbon around the cake. =)

Valerie Gamine on March 03, 2011 12:00 am said...

Wowee, wow. wow. wow.
I'm so hungry right now, and this looks way to delicious. Thanks for making my stomach growl at me even more. :D

P.S. I'm not a huge cheesecake fan either, but my love for peanut butter trumps just about everything!

Tara on March 03, 2011 3:30 am said...

How happy am "I" that there's a pumpkin cheesecake in my fridge right now. Phew!! This looks almost too good to be true! Bookmarking it for my birthday. ;)

Mandi on March 03, 2011 3:43 am said...

What sort of cookie should I use for the crust?

nina- My Easy Cooking on March 03, 2011 6:01 am said...

If ever I have to draw or present a picture of "sin". I will come straight here and copy this picture. It is awfully tempting! Wow!

Marisa on March 03, 2011 6:18 am said...

@Mandi I used wholewheat digestive biscuits for the crust, if you are unable to find those, you can substitute with graham crackers. You basically just want a mild tasting and not too sweet cookie to partner with the chocolate and nuts. Happy baking!

Danie Pienaar said...

WOW Marisa! I'm REALLY impressed with your pics! You should consider to do food/"object" photography in your spare time, restaurants/shops will definitely pay for the quality you deliver! You have raw talent, there is no doubt about it. Are you still using your small Canon?

CarinE on March 03, 2011 10:03 am said...

Great picture, great food. I want it right now.

Juanita on March 03, 2011 9:45 pm said...

Impressive end result!

Anonymous said...

damn you. I'm gonna spend horrendous amounts of money on cream cheese. That looks so dense and moist and oh my gosh I think I jut drooled a little. Your photos are beautiful and they totally convey the message. i wanna eat my screen.

Laura on March 04, 2011 3:03 am said...

I am not the biggest fan of peanut butter cheesecake in the world-but I think that just changed.

Nicola on March 05, 2011 9:43 am said...

I saw this Fay Lewis book From The Oven yesterday and though it was this cake on the cover for a second. Very similar styling.

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