Recipe: Strawberry Cheesecake

It has been a tremendously busy week for me the past week. I have been working way too much overtime at my job, fell behind with my school work and have two clients who I want to get their sites out as quickly as possible. I have had no time for anything else till I decided I needed a breather. What was going to be my breather? Making a cheesecake!!

I have a plain cheesecake recipe that is very easy and everybody loves but I was not feeling plain this weekend. I wanted something lively and different to get me excited to make. So I opted to find a fancy recipe somewhere that was more than plain. I found a dupe of Cheesecake factory's White Chocolate Raspberry Truffle Cheesecake from Chef Mommy.

This was really good. Just looking at this pic makes me want to go get another slice. Most people think that making a cheesecake is hard, but I actually find it much easier than making a normal say carrot cake or sponge (vanilla cake). With a cheesecake there is not that much worry about density. It is supposed to be heavy so that stress is gone.

I also was able to borrow my friend's dslr camera and took this opportunity to play with it. So excuse the pic overload. Boy do I want one now. I had to do little to no editing to these pictures, much unlike my phone. But I digress.

The hardest part of this process for me was making the crust. I was a bit nervous that I even bought a regular graham pre made crust in case I messed this up. I actually had oreo cookies in my house so I sat and scraped and crushed these. The next time I will blend them in my nutribullet to a finer consistency so that I can get it to spread a little further up the sides. I was a bit worried that the cake may not hold but it worked out fine.

This cheesecake called for 4 8oz packs of cheesecake which filled up my mixer bowl a bit. You really have to keep scraping down the sides to ensure that everything gets mixed in properly. It got really tight in the bowl until I was able to add the eggs.

Layering was pretty easy. Instead of using raspberry I used strawberry instead. I was concerned about the parchment paper sticking to the sides and making it a odd shape or the edges really ugly but it worked and it was no trouble getting it off the sides of the cake too.

Looking for a great cheesecake please please please try this. I added some coconut flakes I had leftover and some more strawberry preserves on the top. Yum!! Thanks Chef Mommy!!

Here's the recipe as I did it.

2 cups crumbled Oreo cookies (filling removed)
1/4 cup butter, melted 

1/2 cup strawberry preserves 
1/4 cup water
4 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup sour cream
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
4 eggs 
2 ounces white chocolate chips 

Optional Garnish
Some white shredded coconut. 
Strawberry preserve. 

Prep Time: 20 mins 
Total Time: 1 1/2 hrs

1. Preheat oven to 475 degrees.
2. Create a water bath by placing a large pan filled with about 1/2-inch of water into the oven while it preheats. (Make sure your pan is at least an 1 inch deep. I had a shallow pan and had to keep re adding water)
3. Combine the strawberry preserves with 1/4 cup water in a medium microwave-safe bowl. Heat for 1 1/2 minutes on high in your microwave. Stir until smooth. Sit to the side to cool.
4. Measure chocolate cookie crumbs into a medium bowl. Mix in melted margarine. Press the crumb into a 9-inch spring form pan that has been lined on the bottom and side with parchment paper. Use the bottom of a drinking glass to press the crumb mixture flat into the bottom of the pan and about 2/3 the way up the side. This did not work for me. I used my fingertips. 
5. Wrap a large piece of foil around the bottom of the pan to keep the cheesecake in the water bath. Put the crust in your freezer until the filling is done.
6. Use an electric mixer to combine the cream cheese with the sugar, sour cream, and vanilla. Mix for a couple minutes or until the ingredients are smooth and creamy. Be sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl. Whisk the eggs in a medium bowl and then add them to the cream cheese mixture. Blend the mixture just enough to incorporate the eggs.
7. Remove the crust from the freezer and sprinkle white chocolate chunks onto the bottom of the crust.
8. Pour half of the cream cheese filling into the crust. Drizzle the strawberry preserves over the entire surface of the filling. Use a butter knife to swirl the raspberry into the cream cheese. Pour the other half of the filling into the crust.
9. Carefully place the cheesecake into the water bath in the oven. Bake for 12 minutes at 475 degrees, then turn the oven down to 350 degrees and bake for 60 minutes or until the top of the cheesecake turns a light brown or tan color.
10. Remove the cheesecake from the oven to cool. When the cheesecake is cool, use the foil from the bottom to cover the cheesecake and chill it in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours.
11. Before serving, sprinkle the entire top surface of cheesecake with 2 ounces of shaved coconut flakes. 

Source: Chef Mommy

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