Wednesday, 2 September 2015

#Bakeofflovelies Dessert Week

It's been "Dessert week" on the Bake Off, 
and this week once again my lovely husband is the contributor to our #bakeofflovelies.
As someone who loves cheesecake he didn't need any persuasion to bake a delicious dessert.
He spent a whole afternoon putting together this gorgeous cheesecake and carefully timing the process;

I being my usual self thought he might be being a little too meticulous.
Apparently I was wrong.
I can see now why my cheesecakes are always rather solid and crack down the middle when baked.
Although Cheesecake isn't my favourite dessert; even I can appreciate this one.
I'll admit I thought they were giving the bakers an easy task, asking for stacked cheesecakes; 
again I was so very wrong.
There really is so much more than crushing a few biscuits and throwing on some cream cheese;
and as for stacking them, I nearly had a breakdown getting this one onto a plate.
As Joe was  called to work a long shift he handed over the task of decorating his creation to me and gave me full artistic license.
In our house we really do love salted caramel (as you've probably guessed) -
its just so good!

I pondered over what kind of caramel for the topping - believe it or not there are more than one type- but in the end settled for a thick and creamy caramel layer;
 Imagine the caramel in Millionaires Shortbread.

We ended up with a very creamy baked cheesecake to rival the one in Friends, topped with a gorgeous Fudgy layer of Salted Caramel


For the Crust:

85g Butter Melted
140g Digestive Biscuits
1 Tsp Sugar

For the Cheesecake:

900g Full Fat Cream Cheese
250g Caster Sugar
3 Tbsp Plain Flour
1 Tsp Vanilla Extract
Finely Grated zest of one Lemon
1 1/2 Tsp Lemon juice
3 Large Eggs plus one Yolk
250ml Creme Fraiche 

For the Topping

100g of Unsalted Butter
100g of Soft Brown Sugar
1 Can of Sweetened Condensed Milk

Preheat the oven to 180 and line a 23cm Spring form cake tin with greaseproof paper.
Melt the butter and stir in the crumbs and sugar; press into the bottom of the tin and bake for 10 minutes then cool on a wire rack.
Increase the oven temperature to 240.
Beat the cheese at a medium speed using a paddle until creamy - do not over mix
slowly add the sugar, flour and a pinch of salt.
Swap the paddle for the whisk then add the vanilla. lemon zest and juice.
Add the eggs one at a time, scraping down the sides; again don't over-beat the mixture.
Add the creme fraiche whisking at a low speed
The mixtue should be smooth and light
Brush the sides of the spring form tin with melted butter then pour in the filling
Bake for 10 minutes then reduce the heat to 110 and bake for 25 minutes more
(There should be a wobble if you shake the tin)
Turn off the oven, open the door and leave to cool for two hours
cover and refrigerate overnight - If you can wait that long!

For the caramel topping, melt the butter over a medium heat and stir in the sugar until dissolved;
Add the tin of Condensed milk and turn to a high heat, stirring quickly for about a minute
Remove from heat and leave to cool before spreading over your cheesecake
Sprinkle with a good quality salt- Maldon is perfect.

For me this was as near to perfection as a baked cheesecake gets,
The middle was perfectly creamy.
As for the topping, when is it ever a bad idea to top a dessert with caramel?
I have a feeling Joe will be baking this one again soon..

You can link up with us below or tag your #bakeofflovelies on Instagram or Twitter!

Happy Baking

Sally & Joe


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