I made a miniature cutesy professional looking dessert!!! Yayy :D
Cheesecake has been on my way too long to-bake list since forever, but I always put it off after hearing scary stories about cracks, and how hard it is to keep those away. One day when I was at the store, I just bought some cream cheese, and then decided not to put it off any longer. Cheesecake is my next favorite thing to order when out, after chocolate. Why not try making it at home, where I can play with the flavors exactly as I like? Since I was already a little terrified of making it, I decided to go with the tried and trusted and much loved recipe used by the Daring Bakers last year. The result? Oh my. It was pure sin. I used the idea by one of the most creative food bloggers out there, Rita of Clumbsy Cookie.
She made a simple cheesecake totally sinful by adding Nutella, hazelnuts, and a chocolate crust. It was dreamy. The play of textures on your tongue leaves you vying for more. It's a perfect blend of creamy, chocolatey and crunchy! Look at the picture below, and I just know you'll be running out to the kitchen immediately!!
If you want to remove the cheesecakes from their pans, and don't have those nifty removable bottom individual pans, just lay on a piece of parchment as elow, it works almost as well!
Ferrero Rocher Cheesecake
Adapted from Clumbsy Cookie
For the crust -
2 cups [180 g] graham cracker crumbs - I used chocolate cookie crumbs and omitted the cocoa powder
1 stick [113 g/ 4 oz] butter, melted
2 tbsp [25 g] sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract / half a vanilla bean
4 tbsp cocoa powder
For the cheesecake -
3 sticks [24 oz] of cream cheese
1 cup [220 g] sugar
3 large eggs
1 cup [8 oz/225 g] heavy cream
1 tbsp vanilla extract / half a vanilla bean
1 tbsp liqueur, optional - I didn't use
1/2 tsp salt
About 15 Ferrero Rocher Chocolates, one for each individual ramekin. Alternatively, if making in one large dish, you could cut these up into large chunks
3/4 cup Nutella
2 tbsp chopped roasted hazelnuts, for decoration - I chose to leave mine plain
- Preheat oven to 350 F [180 C]. Begin to boil a large pot of water for the water bath.
- Mix together all the ingredients for the crust and press into your preferred pan. You can press the crust just into the bottom, or up the sides of the pan. Set crust aside.
- In a large bowl, cream together the cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Mix in the eggs, one at a time, fully incorporating each before adding the next. Add heavy cream, vanilla, and licquer and blend until smooth and creamy. Lastly add the chopped Ferrero Rocher, if using.
- Pour batter into prepared crust and tap the pan on the counter a few times to bring all air bubbles to the surface. 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, layer on the Nutella, and serve.