Chocolate Swirl Baked Cheesecake Recipe

Chocolate Swirl Baked Cheesecake Recipe

Chocolate Swirl Baked Cheesecake

Chocolate Swirl Baked Cheesecake has kind of built up this rep of being one of thee most delicious things I make in my Artisan Home-Bakery. And I humbly, completely agree.

I don’t necessarily see it as MY super creation. It just kind of happened that this recipe picked me as a friend and I SO LOVE this friend!

Completely objectively speaking – this chocolate swirl cheesecake has changed my life. It is SO FREAKIN GOOOOOD!

The Story Behind My Chocolate Swirl Baked Cheesecake

My late sister (Leaan) is generally acknowledged to be one of the rad-est human beings to have ever existed.

One weekend my husband was out of town. By now she knew full well that I would spend the entire weekend indoors… working or playing computer games. Leaan had a grand plan up her sleeve though!

She arrived at our home at 10h00, unannounced, and politely informed me that she was kidnapping me for the day! She took me to this incredible vintage store & restaurant called “Boere Sjiek” which means “Farmers Chic” in Afrikaans.

AND, of course, there was the most beautifully festive cake display in history!! Tall layer cakes decorated with fresh roses, tarts, cupcakes, pastries, quiches etc. I was gawking at everything like a 5-year-old!

After oooh-ing and ahhh-ing over all the beauty, we sat down to enjoy some cake. We shared something savoury and something sweet – going halfsies is how we roll! Best of both worlds.

Our dessert selection was the Oreo Cheesecake. Oreo cookie crust, with marbled baked cheesecake and ganache on top. It was fantastic!!

It took about 2 months of reminiscing before I decided I had to eat this cheesecake again. I would definitely try and make it myself this time around though…

 

Chocolate Swirl Cheesecake Development

chocolate swirl cheesecake recipe | baked chocolate cheesecake

As much as I love Oreos, the added icing from the cookies in the crust makes it a tad too sweet for me. As you know I’m very partial to balance in baked goods. Dominant flavour, not sweetness. For this reason, I opted for my favourite chocolate cheesecake pastry instead of crushed Oreos.

The baked cheesecake part is my own Baked Vanilla Cheesecake of which some is turned into chocolate cheesecake and marbled together.

The ganache topping, I made with Dark Couverture Chocolate from Cocoafair – my favourite local Chocolaterie. The Dark Chocolate ganache is less sweet and more chocolaty 😊 A contrasting, white chocolate drizzle completes the look of the Chocolate Swirl Cheesecake beautifully.

 

So, How Does It Taste?

For a completely objective opinion, I’ll share a Google Review from one of my clients, Silke Rittershaus:

“We all agreed, this is the best cheesecake we ever had. My husband and his friend normally don’t eat dessert. But from the Chocolate Swirl Cheesecake both of them eat even two slices! With every bite, you indulge yourself. The cheesecake is moist and very creamy and the chocolate crust fits perfectly to this cheesecake. The taste of the whole composition is incredibly delicious. It’s really hard to stop eating, you just want to have more of this heavenly treat.”

This chocolate swirl baked cheesecake recipe has changed my life. Here's a testimonial from one of my clients: "With every bite, you indulge yourself. The cheesecake is moist and very creamy and the chocolate crust fits perfectly to this cheesecake. The taste of the whole composition is incredibly delicious. It's really hard to stop eating, you just want to have more of this heavenly treat." #bakedcheesecake #chocolatecheesecake #cheesecakerecipe

Silke’s husband, Axel, was kind enough to send me the photo a cheesecake slice! Just look at that creamy, dreamy texture… Yummmm…

After all of this, I hope you are convinced that you should make this Chocolate Swirl Cheesecake!

The only advice I would give is that you READ MY PERFECT CHEESECAKE GUIDE FIRST, before diving into the recipe! These tips will prep you for making your own flawless Baked Cheesecake.

My Perfect Cheesecake Guide covers all the essential tips you need to avoid any cracks, curdling, sinking etc. I also discuss an alternative method to the traditional (and indiscreetly tedious) water bath baking method. Open it in a separate tab and give it a read. Remember, method determines at least 50% of the quality of your bake! Method matters.

Without further ado, here is the recipe for one of the gems of my Artisan Home-Bakery (Philosophy of Yum)…

 

5.0 from 1 reviews
Chocolate Swirl Baked Cheesecake
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 9 inch Cake
Ingredients
FOR THE PASTRY:
  • 195 g All-Purpose Flour
  • 35 g Cocoa Powder
  • 75 g Pure Icing Sugar
  • pinch of salt
  • 130 g Salted Butter, ice cold & cubed
  • 50 g Egg Yolks (about 2 ½ egg yolks)
  • ½ Tbsp Vanilla Extract
FOR THE CHEESECAKE:
  • 1000 g Medium Fat Cream Cheese (25% fat), at room temperature
  • 320 g White Sugar
  • 5 g Salt
  • 4 X-Large Eggs (240 g)
  • 200 ml Sour Cream
  • 1 Tbsp Vanilla Extract
  • 2 Tbsp Cocoa Powder
  • 1 Tbsp Water
FOR THE DARK CHOCOLATE GANACHE:
  • 110 g Whipping Cream
  • 1 tsp White Sugar
  • 90 g Dark Chocolate (at least 65% Cocoa Solids)
FOR DECORATION:
  • 20 g White Chocolate
Instructions
FOR THE PASTRY:
  1. Follow instructions as specified in Cheesecake Pastry Post. Includes detailed instructions and photos! When you've finished blind baking the pastry, turn your oven down to 150°C/302°F.
FOR THE CHEESECAKE:
  1. Place the room temperature cream cheese in the bowl of your stand mixer. With the paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese on medium low speed till smooth.
  2. Add in the sugar and salt. Beat on medium low speed for 30 seconds. Leave to stand for 5 minutes and beat again till smooth.
  3. Scrape down the paddle, sides and bottom of the bowl. Beat again till smooth.
  4. From here on out ONLY mix on the lowest and slowest turtle speed possible. If your mixer doesn’t have the option to go very slow, then do the rest by hand.
  5. Crack all the eggs in a separate bowl. Stir lightly with a fork till the yolks are broken.
  6. Pour more or less 1 egg at a time into the cream cheese mixture with the mixer going on its slowest speed, or stir by hand. It is crucial to not whip in any air.
  7. Add the remaining egg in in 3 sessions. Don’t watch it the whole time, you will be SO tempted to increase the speed. It is a great opportunity to spend some time on Pinterest or learn a language on the Duo Lingo App (I’ve become 7% more fluent in French, just from cheesecake mixing time! Haha!).
  8. Before mixing in the last egg, scrape down the sides and bottom of your bowl thoroughly and mix again on lowest speed.
  9. Stir the sour cream and vanilla into the cheesecake batter by hand to avoid overmixing.
  10. Pour the cheesecake mixture into the semi-baked pastry base, but reserve about 1/7 of the mixture. Stir 2 tablespoons of sifted cocoa powder + 1 Tablespoon water into the left-over cheesecake mixture till fully combined. Smoosh out any cocoa lumps with the back of a spoon against the side of the bowl. You may stir this chocolate cheesecake mixture vigorously with a spoon!
  11. At this point, start boiling a full kettle of water.
  12. Dollop/pour the chocolate cheesecake mixture over the vanilla cheesecake mixture in the tin.
  13. With a chopstick, carefully make vertical circles in the cheesecake mixture (with wrist movement – like you are beating something with a balloon whisk) so that the 2 tones are marbled together slightly. Turn your tin as you go around the perimeter. I usually make one wide circle around the outside and one smaller circle inside it. To finish off, I swirl just the top surface again so it looks pretty.
  14. Place the cheesecake in the center of your oven. Fill the empty roasting tray with just boiled water. Bake for 1 hour at 150°C/302°F.
  15. Turn the cheesecake 180 degrees around in the oven. Bake for another 35 minutes. Switch off the oven with the cheesecake still inside and the door still closed.
  16. After 5 minutes, leave the oven door ajar. Leave the cheesecake inside for 1h30.
  17. Remove from the oven and leave to cool at room temperature for 1 hour. Transfer to the fridge and leave to cool overnight.
FOR THE GANACHE:
  1. The next morning you can decorate the cheesecake! There may be some condensation on the surface of the cheesecake; dab the surface with some paper towels to absorb the moisture.
  2. Heat the cream and tsp of sugar in a saucepan to simmering point. Pour it over the finely chopped chocolate. Leave to stand for 2 minutes, stir till smooth. Pour over the cheesecake immediately. Tilt the pan till the whole surface is covered in chocolate ganache. Refrigerate for 5 minutes.
  3. In the meantime, melt the 20 g of white chocolate in the microwave in a mug – 30 seconds at a time. Stir thoroughly every 30 seconds. Keep going till it is fully melted. Place a small plastic sandwich bag over a cup with one corner facing down. Transfer the melted chocolate into the sandwich bag. Aim for the bottom corner!
  4. Remove the cheesecake from the fridge. Snip a tiny bit of the end off the corner chocolate baggie. Drizzle over the cheesecake any way you like. I like circles.
  5. Carefully push up the bottom of the tin all around the cheesecake to loosen the sides. Place the cheesecake on top of the middle of a wide-bottomed mug or sturdy glass, gently pressing down the sides of the tin.
  6. Lift the bare sided cheesecake back onto your work surface. Slide a large, smooth edged knife under the pastry to loosen the cheesecake from the bottom of the tin. I like to go all around the edges first before attempting to loosen the center-bottom. Push the cheesecake gently, with a cupped hand, onto your cake stand/cake board/serving platter.
  7. Cut slices with a hot, dry knife. Enjoy!!!

If you’re into Cheesecake you’ll love these related posts:

Perfect Baked Cheesecake | The Ultimate Guide!

Cheesecake Pastry Recipe (with chocolate variation)

Perfect Vanilla Baked Cheesecake Recipe

Chat soon!

Aurelia

Got a question? Something to add? Let’s chat in the comments section down below! (I respond to every single comment)

The Ultimate Vanilla Baked Cheesecake Recipe

The Ultimate Vanilla Baked Cheesecake Recipe

Ultimate Vanilla Baked Cheesecake

Vanilla Baked Cheesecake is one of the most glorious desserts on earth. Fact. Tangy, creamy, smooth and rich. Paired with a sharp fruit compote, it is even better! Total, TOTAL bliss.

If you’ve read my previous posts in my Perfect Baked Cheesecake Series, you will know that I was absolutely petrified of making baked cheesecake – for yeeeears.

There are so many things that can go wrong with baked cheesecake. It can sink, curdle and crack or (on the other side of the spectrum) you can be too gentle and end up with an under-cooked cheesecake.

In most cooking/baking shows, we constantly see all the dramas and dangers surrounding the humble cheesecake. BUT, you honestly don’t need to be afraid – at all!

 

Let’s Get Technical

A perfect baked Vanilla Cheesecake is, seriously, super straight forward.

The ingredients are simple, but the METHOD is where things really go down

Therefore I advise you to READ MY PERFECT BAKED CHEESECAKE GUIDE FIRST, before diving into the recipe! These tips will prep you for making your own flawless Baked Vanilla Cheesecake.

This guide covers all the essential tips you need to avoid any cracks, curdling, sinking, shrinking, etc. I also discuss an alternative method to the traditional (and indiscreetly tedious) water bath baking method.

Open the Perfect Baked Cheesecake Guide in a separate tab and give it a read. Remember, method determines at least 50% of the quality of your bake! Method matters.

A lush, New York Style Vanilla Baked Cheesecake; buttery vanilla pastry with super creamy, dense (but not too dense), smooth and tangy cheesecake. Deeeeelectable! Eat it as is or add a topping; fresh fruit, salted caramel & nuts or a fruit compote. #newyorkcheesecake #bakedcheesecake #cheesecakerecipe #perfectcheesecake

 

My Baked Cheesecake Recipe Development

There are many takes on baked vanilla cheesecake. Many folks insist on using only cream cheese, eggs and sugar.

I do feel that using only cream cheese makes the cake a bit TOO cheesy though – in texture and flavour. Obviously a cheesecake needs to be cheesy, but I love it when the flavour is mellowed out just a tad with some sour cream inside the batter.

The first vanilla cheesecake I made was a recipe by Tyler Florence. He is constantly on a quest to make the ULTIMATE of something. My kind of person! His vanilla cheesecake recipe contained sour cream which gave the cheesecake a beautiful tang.

The addition of sour cream also rounded out the flavour of the cream cheese wonderfully! His recipe contained a bit too much sour cream for me though. Sorry Tyler!

I also tried a recipe by Gemma Strafford once. It was lovely, but I really missed the tang of the sour cream.

Some more influence came along from Ashlee Marie. Her recipe didn’t use any cream or sour cream inside the batter, but her baking and mixing methods for vanilla cheesecake were life changing.

For the cheesecake pastry, refer to my previous post in my Perfect Cheesecake Series – click here. I’ll include another link inside this vanilla cheesecake recipe (further down) when you will need it.

I utterly ADORE this vanilla cheesecake recipe… It’s a New York Style Cheesecake; buttery vanilla pastry with super creamy, dense (but not too dense), smooth and tangy cheesecake. Deeeeelectable!

It can be eaten as is, or you can add a topping. These are my favourite toppings:

  1. A Fruit Compote (recipe listed below this baked cheesecake recipe).
  2. Salted caramel & toasted pecans. I recommend that you still add the thin white chocolate layer on top of the cheesecake (as described in the recipe below) so that the caramel doesn’t soak into your perfect baked cheesecake.
  3. Dress it up with fresh, seasonal fruit. For this I like to ditch the white chocolate layer and add some of my ultimate vanilla cream cheese frosting on top of the cheesecake and then add the fruit on top of that. Dust the fruit with icing sugar to make it look gorgeous and festive!

 

Here is my ultimate Baked Vanilla Cheesecake Recipe!

5.0 from 1 reviews
The Ultimate Vanilla Baked Cheesecake Recipe
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 9 inch cheesecake
Ingredients
FOR THE PASTRY:
  • 230 g All-Purpose Flour
  • 75 g Icing Sugar
  • 130 g Butter, cold and cubed
  • 50 g Egg Yolks (about 2 ½ yolks)
  • ½ Tbsp Vanilla Extract
FOR THE CHEESECAKE:
  • 1000 g Cream Cheese (I use medium fat – 25% fat)
  • 320 g White Sugar
  • 5 g Salt
  • 240 g Egg (4 X-large eggs)
  • 200 g Sour Cream
  • 1 Tbsp Vanilla Extract
FOR THE FRUIT COMPOTE:
  • 220 g Fruit of choice
  • 120 g White Sugar
  • 1 Tbsp Lemon Juice
  • 45 g Water
  • 13 g Corn Starch
FOR THE WHITE CHOCOLATE LAYER:
  • 85 g White Chocolate
  • ½ Tbsp Flavourless Vegetable Oil
Instructions
FOR THE PASTRY:
  1. Refer to my previous post, Cheesecake Pastry, for instructions.
FOR THE CHEESECAKE:
  1. Preheat your oven to 300˚F/150˚C and move an oven rack to the center of your oven. Place the largest roasting tray you have on the bottom rack of your oven.
  2. Use a stand mixer to make this vanilla cheesecake. Do not use a hand mixer. If you don’t have a stand mixer, then rather mix the batter by hand. Place the room temperature cream cheese in the bowl of your stand mixer. With the paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese on medium low speed till smooth.
  3. Add in the sugar and salt. Beat on medium-low speed for 30 seconds. Leave to stand for 5 minutes and beat again on medium-low speed till sugar is dissolved (30 seconds).
  4. Scrape down the paddle, sides and bottom of the bowl. Beat again on medium-low speed till smooth (30 seconds).
  5. From here on out ONLY mix on the lowest and slowest turtle speed possible. If your mixer doesn’t have the option to go very slow, then do the rest by hand.
  6. Crack all the eggs in a separate bowl. Stir lightly with a fork till the yolks are broken.
  7. Pour more or less 1 egg at a time into the cream cheese mixture with the mixer going on its slowest speed, or stir by hand. It is crucial to not whip in any air.
  8. Add the remaining egg in in 3 sessions. Don’t watch it the whole time, you will be SO tempted to increase the speed. It is a great opportunity to spend some time on Pinterest or learn a language on the Duo Lingo App (I’ve become 7% more fluent in French, just from cheesecake mixing time! Haha!).
  9. Before mixing in the last egg, scrape down the sides and bottom of your bowl thoroughly and mix again on lowest speed.
  10. At this point, start boiling a full kettle of water on the side.
  11. Stir the sour cream and vanilla into the cheesecake batter by hand to avoid overmixing.
  12. Pour the vanilla cheesecake batter into the semi-baked pastry.
  13. Place the cheesecake in the center of your oven. Fill the empty roasting tray with just boiled water. Bake for 1 hour.
  14. Turn the cheesecake 180 degrees around. Bake for another 35 minutes. Switch off the oven with the cheesecake still inside and the door still closed.
  15. After 5 minutes, leave the oven door ajar. Leave the cheesecake inside the switched off oven for 1h30.
  16. Remove from the oven and leave to cool at room temperature for 1 hour. Transfer to the fridge and leave it in there overnight.
FOR THE FRUIT COMPOTE:
  1. Place the fruit, sugar, lemon juice and salt in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir frequently and allow to cook for 5 - 7 minutes till the sugar is dissolved. Smash some of the berries with a fork during the cooking process.
  2. In a small bowl, dissolve the corn flour in the water. Add it to the cooking berries while stirring constantly. Allow to cook for about 2 minutes, while stirring, so that the corn flour gets cooked through. The compote should be thickened. Set aside to cool.
FOR THE WHITE CHOCOLATE LAYER:
  1. The next morning you can decorate the cheesecake! There may be some condensation on the surface of the cheesecake; dab the surface with some paper towels to absorb the moisture. Leave the cheesecake inside its tin.
  2. Heat the white chocolate and oil together in the microwave in 30 second bursts till completely melted. Pour it over the surface of the cheesecake and immediately tilt the cheesecake in all directions till the surface is completely covered with a thin layer of white chocolate. Refrigerate for 10 minutes to set.
FINISHING THE VANILLA BAKED CHEESECAKE:
  1. Carefully push up the bottom of the tin all around the cheesecake to loosen the sides. Place the cheesecake on top of a mug or sturdy glass, gently pressing down the sides of the tin.
  2. Lift the bare sided cheesecake back onto your work surface. Slide a large, smooth edged knife under the pastry to loosen the cheesecake from the bottom of the tin. I like to go all around the edges first before attempting to loosen the center-bottom. Push the cheesecake gently, with a cupped hand, onto your cake stand/cake board/serving platter.
  3. Lastly, top the white chocolate layer with your cooled fruit compote and spread it out evenly.
  4. Cut slices with a hot, dry knife. Enjoy!!!

If you’re into Baked Cheesecake you’ll LOVE these related posts:

  1. First there’s the Ultimate Guide to Perfect Baked Cheesecake
  2. Then there’s my Cheesecake Pastry Recipe (includes chocolate variation) and Walk-Through.
  3. Then my Chocolate Swirl Baked Cheesecake recipe.

Chat soon!

Aurelia

Got a question? Something to add? Let’s chat in the comments section down below! (I respond to every single comment)

Cheesecake Pastry Recipe – With 2 Flavour Variations!

Cheesecake Pastry Recipe – With 2 Flavour Variations!

Cheesecake Pastry

Cheesecake Pastry was not something I grew up with at all! Come on, we all mostly eat cookie crust cheesecakes – and they truly are fantastic! Who can ever manage to figure out if they like cheesecake’s crust or filling more?? BOTH are super delicious.

The slightly crunchy texture of the crust along with the flawlessly smooth cheesecake filling is the highlight of Dessert World.

BUT, did you know that Cheesecake Pastry was actually the original crust used by the clever Greeks and Romans? (Read more about the history of cheesecake).

Since they are generally considered as geniuses, I always knew deep down that cheesecake pastry might be something to look into.

Honestly, my decision to start making cheesecake with a cheesecake pastry base was due to the nature of my Home Bakery. I had to figure out how to make a crust sturdy enough to handle being moved over to a disposable cake board.

Crushed cookie bases are quick to prepare, but super difficult to transfer to a different dish, serving platter, cake board etc. Typically, you leave the cheesecake on the bottom of your spring-form cake tin and use it as a “cake board”.

cheesecake pastry recipe plain or chocolate

Problem with this idea is that I can’t exactly expect my clients to return my cake tin’s bottom. Too tedious for them and me. Cheesecake Pastry is much sturdier and still contains gorgeous butter, so you aren’t missing anything!

What Makes Cheesecake Pastry Different?

There are a few differences between cheesecake pastry and regular shortcrust pastry. Cheesecake pastry typically contains more egg, because egg is a great binding agent. It provides extra strength and stability to the pastry.

I would even go so far as to say it provides a small amount of elasticity. Shortcrust pastry, in my opinion, needs to pretty much have the texture of shortbread. I did a very thorough post on Shortcrust Pastry earlier this year.

It might be a bit unorthodox, but I like to add vanilla extract to my cheesecake pastry instead of water. It really bumps up the flavour and compliments the cheesecake so beautifully!

Perks of Using Cheesecake Pastry

  • The biggest perk for me is that it protects the cheesecake during baking. It COMPLETELY eliminates the risk for over-cooked/browned/curdled edges around the cheesecake.
  • It keeps the cheesecake moister during baking since the delicate cheesecake filling never touches the hot and dehydrating aluminium sides of the tin.
  • As I mentioned before, it makes the finished cheesecake a BREEZE to transfer onto a cake board or cake stand without lending out your tin’s bottom.
  • It really is super delicious! Since I’ve switched to cheesecake pastry, I’ve never had the desire to go back to crushed cookie bases.
  • It is really not difficult at all! In a food processor, it really takes like 5 minutes. I’m going to give you step by step instructions so that you can also make your own cheesecake pastry!

*SUPER IMPORTANT!! Before you make this Cheesecake Pastry and proceed with making a Baked Cheesecake, I strongly urge you to read my post PERFECT BAKED CHEESECAKE | THE ULTIMATE GUIDE.

Cheesecake Pastry - easy and super delicious! VANILLA or CHOCOLATE Cheesecake Pastry variations available to compliment your favourite cheesecake recipe. #bakedcheesecake #cheesecakepastry #cheesecakerecipe

5.0 from 1 reviews
Cheesecake Pastry - Plain or Chocolate
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 9 inch base
Ingredients
  • 230 g All-purpose Flour (sub 40 g cocoa if making chocolate pastry)
  • 75 g Pure Icing Sugar
  • 130 g Salted Butter, cold and cubed
  • 50 g Free-range Egg Yolks (2 egg yolks + 10g of whole beaten egg)
  • ½ Tbsp Vanilla Extract
Instructions
  1. Place flour (and cocoa powder if making choc pastry) in a food processor. Cut the butter into a 1 cm dice and add to the food processor. Try to distribute the cubes of butter evenly in the flour so that they don’t stick together.
  2. Process on high speed until resembling even bread crumbs.
  3. Add icing sugar and process for about 10 seconds on high speed.
  4. Add the egg yolks and vanilla. Process on high speed for about 15 seconds. The pastry will not form a ball inside the processor.
  5. cheesecake pastry process
  6. Pour the crumbly mixture onto a work surface – do not add any extra liquid! Press all the crumbs together and press the pastry together till more or less smooth. This should take only about 3 minutes. Form the pastry into a ball and squash it flat to about 1cm thick - this helps it to chill faster.
  7. Wrap the pastry in cling wrap and refrigerate it for 15 minutes.
  8. Cut a 30 cm x 30 cm square of non-stick parchment paper. Place the chilled pastry on the paper and roll out with a lightly floured rolling pin to an EVEN 3mm thickness, roughly in a circular shape. The parchment paper makes it super easy to turn the pastry when rolling!
  9. Spray/butter the inside of your 9 inch (22,5 cm) tin. Place the loose bottom face side down onto the pastry. Cut around the sides of the tin’s bottom and also at 12, 3, 6 and 9 o’clock to divide the excess pastry into 4 strips.
  10. Remove the strips one by one and place to one side. Press down on the tin’s bottom so that the pastry squishes out slightly underneath. I find this little lip of pastry helps to combine the pastry on the sides with the pastry on the bottom.
  11. Flip the parchment paper and tin’s bottom. Peel away the paper.
  12. Drop your tin’s bottom back into your tin and fill in the sides of the tin with your pastry strips using your fingers. Do not worry about a smooth finish just yet.
  13. Preheat your oven to 180ᵒC/350ᵒF.
  14. Place your tin in the freezer for 5 minutes. Remove from freezer and smooth the edges and bottom with a metal spoon. Return to freezer for a further 10 minutes or until frozen solid.
  15. Cut a large piece of heavy weight foil (enough to line the bottom AND go up and over the sides.) Spray the dull side of the foil with non-stick cooking spray. Smooth the greased side of the foil directly onto the pastry. Leave no pastry exposed. Be sure to press the foil down very snugly into the corners of the cheesecake pastry. Run your finger over the top edge as well to maintain the shape of the pastry during baking.
  16. Fill the cavity with dry baking beans (I prefer rice).
  17. Bake one notch below the center of your oven for 35 minutes, turning after 15 minutes.
  18. Remove from the oven and leave to stand (with foil and rice still inside) for 10 minutes.
  19. Remove the foil and rice and proceed to fill with cheesecake filling. Bake again for as long as your cheesecake recipe states.

I trust that these simple an thorough steps will enable you to make your own amazing cheesecake pastry! Please let me know how you get on by using #philosophyofyum or even tagging me @philosophyofyum.

If you’re into Cheesecake you’ll love these related posts:

Perfect Baked Cheesecake | The Ultimate Guide!

Perfect Vanilla Baked Cheesecake Recipe

Chocolate Swirl Baked Cheesecake Recipe

Chat soon!

Aurelia

Got a question? Something to add? Let’s chat in the comments section down below! (I respond to every single comment)

Perfect Baked Cheesecake | The Ultimate Guide!

Perfect Baked Cheesecake | The Ultimate Guide!

How to Make Perfect Baked Cheesecake

Perfect Baked Cheesecake can make any horrible day suddenly seem like the BEST day of your life… It’s powerful stuff!

Unfortunately, there’s an intense and unnecessary hype over how difficult it is to bake a perfect cheesecake. I was absolutely petrified of making baked cheesecake for yeeeeears.

The ingredients are also very expensive, so if the cheesecake flops then you don’t only feel like a failure, but are also broke as well. Too much risk man.

Cooking and baking shows also just LOVE showing us the drama of cheesecake, don’t they?

Drama sells. Do yourself a favour – keep in mind that those contestants are under enormous TIME constraints and pressure to perform. That is an ideal recipe for drama and disaster, which the networks need to make the shows sell.

But I want to encourage you today and put your mind at ease… 

It’s actually very simple and 100% possible to bake a perfect cheesecake. ESPECIALLY at home! There is NO reason to be afraid – truly.

So breathe in deeply, muster up some hope and take courage. Now smile! I promise you that I will help you to master this technical dessert and bake the perfect cheesecake on your next attempt.

Before you run off to turn the oven on, just wait a second.

This post (part 1/4) is all about the technical aspects of baking the perfect cheesecake. You may know by now that I am a HUGE believer in METHOD, because it gives us perfect bakes.

Examples of my utter obsession with method: How to Bake Perfect Cupcakes – FULL TroubleshootingHow to Bake Perfect Cupcakes – Advanced Tips, How to Bake Perfectly Level Cake Layers.

I’m laying a foundation here so that you will know exactly what to do when I share my perfect cheesecake recipes in the next 3 posts.

So get yourself a cup of tea and absorb all these tips and tricks I’m sharing with you today.

*HINT* THERE IS ALSO A BONUS CHEAT TIP #7 RIGHT AT THE END OF THE POST THAT WILL MAKE YOUR CHEESECAKE BAKING A WHOLE LOT EASIER!

 

My 6 TOP Tips for Perfect Baked Cheesecake:

The Ultimate Guide to PERFECT Baked Cheesecake gives you ALL the help you need to bake perfect cheesecake at home. We discuss all the causes and prevention of cracking, sinking, under-baking, over-baking etc. After reading this post you should have NO fear to make your own perfect baked cheesecake. #cheesecake #bakingtips #bakedcheesecake #cheesecakerecipe

1. Take your Time:

I’ve watched so many seasons of The Great British Bake Off on which the contestants must always bake cheesecake at some point.

My favourite baking show cheesecake episode is however from The Great Australian Bake Off S1-E6. So shocking that they only had 2,5 hours to make it though!

If you rush yourself to make a perfect cheesecake, I can guarantee that a whole lot of things will go wrong!

Cheesecake is like good American BBQ – LOW AND SLOW.

I actually LOVE the fact that cheesecake takes such a long time to bake. My recipe typically bakes for 1 hour, then I turn it and bake it for another 40 minutes.

That gives you two massive brackets of time to do something else while the lazy cheesecake just hangs out in the oven.

It might be a tad irresponsible, but I’ve gone grocery shopping so many times while the cheesecake is baking. Who has time to watch a cheesecake bake? It would probably take less time to watch paint dry.

So to clarify; perfect cheesecake takes a long time to make yes, but 75% of it is PASSIVE time in which you can do something else. Don’t let the long baking time put you off making it.

 

2. Room Temperature Ingredients:

If your ingredients are not at room temperature, they will struggle to combine into a smooth batter. Perfect cheesecake is made with room temperature ingredients.

Cream cheese can be especially difficult to smooth out when it is cold because of its higher fat content. Butter, for example, is solid fat. Have you ever tried creaming ice-cold butter? Impossible.

Also be sure to use room temperature eggs.

If I am being honest, I always use the cream/sour cream straight from the fridge because I don’t want it to go off while standing at room temperature. But room temperature cream cheese and eggs are essential.

 

3. The Bain Marie Situation:

Bain Marie means “Marie’s bath”, but in the baking world it just means “water bath”. A water bath is absolutely essential to baking a perfect cheesecake. It ensures a moist cheesecake and helps it to bake gently and evenly.

But the traditional method of bain marie baking is so superlatively tedious

Wrapping 2 layers of foil around the cake tin AND then placing it in a glass dish AND pouring boiling water around it AND burning yourself when trying to turn the cheesecake halfway through baking it AND then it leaks.

I mean, there are posts just on managing the leaking. TOO TEDIOUS and hazardous. No thanks. Remember, I am a lazy person who loves to make perfect bakes, so I had to find a simpler way.

Ashlee Marie is the fantastic human who presented an alternative. You seriously get the exact same effect if you just place a separate pan of hot water in the oven with the cheesecake. SO much easier and more practical – thank you Ashlee Marie!

  • I like to use the biggest roasting tray I have.
  • Place it in the lower half of your oven before you bake the cheesecake so that it gets nice and hot during the preheating.
  • Boil at least 2 liters of water in a kettle.
  • Place your cheesecake in the middle of your oven.
  • Pull the empty roasting tray out slightly and fill it up with the just-boiled water. This will create a nice cloud of steam to fill the oven right from the start without burning your arms.

Now that you have this super easy cheat bain marie method for baking perfect cheesecake, don’t let it frighten you off either!

 

4. How to Avoid the Dreaded Sinking:

Low and Slow applies not only to the baking of the cheesecake, but also the MIXING. Especially if you will be making mini cheesecakes.

Mini cheesecakes will completely expose your mixing method. Tip number 3 is ALL about the mixing.

How to bake flawless baked cheesecake at home! Learn all the tricks and causes behind shrinking, sinking, cracked baked cheesecake. You'll never have to deal with these problems again. Click through to start mastering baked cheesecake today :) #cheesecake #cheesecaketips #bakingtips #perfectcheesecake

The KEY thing during the mixing phase is not to whip in ANY air. If you do not have a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, make it by hand – seriously. Do not bring a hand mixer anywhere near your cheesecake batter!

  • Add the soft, room temperature cream cheese to the mixing bowl. Beat it on medium low speed till smooth.
  • Add in the sugar. Beat it on medium low speed for 30 seconds. Let it stand for 5 minutes so that the sugar can melt. Beat it on medium low speed again for 30 seconds till smooth. Don’t rush it and beat it on high speed. Ever. At any point.
  • Scrape down the sides and bottom of your bowl thoroughly and mix again on medium low speed.

And now the eggs.

  • I like to crack the eggs in a separate bowl and lightly mix them together so that the yolks break and are easier to incorporate into the cream cheese.
  • FROM HERE ON OUT ONLY MIX ON YOUR MIXER’S LOWEST SPEED.
  • Add the egg in in 4 sessions. Don’t watch it the whole time, you will be SO tempted to increase the speed. It is a great opportunity to spend some time on pinterest or learn a language on the Duo Lingo App (I’ve become 7% more fluent in French, just from cheesecake mixing time! Haha!).
  • Before mixing in the last egg, scrape down the sides and bottom of your bowl thoroughly and mix again on lowest speed.

I like to stir in the cream/sour cream by hand because the mixer takes forever to incorporate the liquid.

If you follow the low and slow mixing method, I guarantee that your cheesecake will come out perfect and not sink a bit!

 

5. How to Tell when a Cheesecake is Done:

A perfect cheesecake has to be just set. Not under baked and saggy, or over-baked and slightly coarse. So HOW do you know when it’s done?

First of all, bake your cheesecake on the regular bake setting of your oven (solid stripe top and solid stripe bottom). Do NOT use a thermo-fan or convection oven.

Now the testing. Some swear by the jiggle or “wibble-wobble” test. Honestly it is a bit vague to me. I can never really tell if it’s done by how much it wobbles. Monique ended up under baking her cheesecake, and so have I, with the jiggle test.

The easiest way for me to tell is looking at the surface. The edges should have puffed up a bit and be dull, but the center circle (about 8cm in diameter) should still be shiny.

The jiggle test is a handy second option for me. The cheesecake should have a stiff jiggle and move as one unit. If the centre still keeps moving after the outer edges have stopped, then it’s NOT done yet. Wait another 10 minutes and check again.

As soon as the outer rim of the cheesecake breaks loose from the side of the tin (or pastry), you’ve gone a bit too far. If the cheesecake browns on top, you have definitely taken it WAY too far.

It will still be tasty, but it will be a tiny bit grainy, drier and not as creamy.

There are also some fancy thermometer tests you can use if you like.

 

6. How to Avoid the Dreaded Cracking:

A cracked cheesecake can happen as a result of your mixing, but more often than not it is because of your baking and/or cooling. A baked cheesecake is like my husband in winter… If you suddenly pull the duvet off him in the freezing morning hours, he WILL crack.

Cheesecake has a sensitive soul. Respect that and all will be well. For this reason, it needs to be cooled very gently and gradually.

  • When baking, let the cheesecake bake in peace for at least one hour before opening the door and turning it or checking it.
  • As soon as my cheesecake is perfectly baked, I turn the oven off and leave the door closed for 5 minutes.
  • Then I leave the oven door ajar. Let the cheesecake hang out in the (switched off) oven for another 90 minutes to be safe.
  • Remove it from the oven and let it rest on the kitchen counter for 1 hour.
  • You may now place it in the fridge overnight for the cheesecake to fully set and get a perfect texture.

Cool your cheesecake gradually if you want it to be perfect and crack free. There is no way around this. And besides, it is once again PASSIVE time. You can do other things while it cools!

 

7. BONUS TIP – Time Saver:

I NEVER remember to take the cream cheese out of the fridge in time. The quickest way to bring it up to room temperature is by defrosting it in the microwave! Yes, I know it’s not “frozen”, but the defrost setting warms up the cream cheese VERY gently and slowly. Yet again – low and slow.

  • Don’t use the quick defrost setting though, which is too intense. Auto defrost for meat is perfect.
  • I let it run for 2 minutes at a time. The cream cheese usually needs 2 sessions of minutes each to reach room temperature.
  • If you can press your finger in to the cream cheese with ease, then it’s ready. Obviously feel the temperature of the cream cheese as well. If you can’t really feel it, it means it should be around body temperature which is perfect.

If your eggs are cold too, simply place them in a bowl of lukewarm water for 10 minutes. Tada!

This is the Part Where I Motivate You:

Put your hands on your heart and repeat after me:

I CAN BAKE A PERFECT CHEESECAKE!

I NOW HAVE NO EXCUSE TO AVOID BAKING CHEESECAKE!

I DESERVE TO BAKE AND EAT A PERFECT CHEESECAKE!

cheesecake | baked cheesecake | cheesecake tips

 

Okay, consider yourself motivated and fearless! These tips for perfect cheesecake will help you to get a perfect bake on your favourite cheesecake recipes.

 

In the next 3 posts I’ve shared my own Home Bakery’s recipes for perfect baked cheesecake that I make all the time…

  1. First there’s my Cheesecake Pastry Recipe (includes chocolate variation) and Walk-Through.
  2. Then my Chocolate Swirl Baked Cheesecake recipe,
  3. and lastly my Vanilla Baked Cheesecake recipe!

Here are some links to other baked cheesecake posts that I found useful in my years as a professional home baker. Thank you to these authors and bloggers for your research! Ashlee Marie, Prepared Pantry, The Kitchn, All Recipes, The Spruce, Simply Recipes

Now go make that cheesecake!

Chat soon,

Aurelia 🙂

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Don't throw out your split chocolate ganache! You can save it and make is 100% smooth & shiny! :D Click through for all the tips you need to fix and prevent split/oily/grainy chocolate ganache. #chocolateganache #splitganache #bakingtips #bakingtipsandtricks
Want to get that thin, super shiny crust on top of your brownies? Great news is, you don't need to drop your favourite brownie recipe in search of a shiny-top brownie recipe! You can use this simple baking tip to get a shiny crust on ANY brownie recipe that contains dairy and sugar! Click through to get the step by step method for baking brownies with a shiny crust on top... #baking #bakingtips #brownies #homebaking #bakingtipsandtricks

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POPULAR BAKING TIPS

Don't throw out your split chocolate ganache! You can save it and make is 100% smooth & shiny! :D Click through for all the tips you need to fix and prevent split/oily/grainy chocolate ganache. #chocolateganache #splitganache #bakingtips #bakingtipsandtricks
Want to get that thin, super shiny crust on top of your brownies? Great news is, you don't need to drop your favourite brownie recipe in search of a shiny-top brownie recipe! You can use this simple baking tip to get a shiny crust on ANY brownie recipe that contains dairy and sugar! Click through to get the step by step method for baking brownies with a shiny crust on top... #baking #bakingtips #brownies #homebaking #bakingtipsandtricks

Got a question? Something to add? Let’s chat in the comments section down below! (I respond to every single comment)

Red Velvet Brownies

Red Velvet Brownies

Red Velvet Brownies (with Cheesecake Swirl)

Red Velvet Brownies are, to me, the BEST and yummiest Red Velvet interpretation. Better than Red Velvet Cake, red velvet pancakes, red velvet cookies or ANY other Red Velvet thing you’ve ever had.

What makes Red Velvet Brownies so brilliant is their chewy, fudgy texture – not to mention the chocolatey, tangy flavour!

Recipe Introduction

As you may know, Red Velvet Cake originated in the South of the USA during the Great Depression. The history is actually quite fascinating! You can read it here.

One of my favourite elements of Red Velvet Cake is the tanginess you get from the buttermilk and vinegar. I just had to retain that element in my Red Velvet Brownie recipe. I have done it by adding white spirit vinegar to the batter. Works like a charm.

 

Another key element is, of course, Cream Cheese Frosting. Now I’m not a huge fan of frosting brownies… It’s overkill in my opinion. Frosting is also incredibly sweet and since brownies already contain a fair bit of sugar, I don’t think it adds to the flavour.

The best option had to be to add the cream cheese (in some form) to the brownie batter before it gets baked.

It was a good move – the result is just incredible! You essentially make a small amount of cheesecake batter and swirl it into the brownies. The cheesecake batter also keeps the Red Velvet Brownies very moist. Total win-win!

Red Velvet Brownies | Red Velvet Brownies from scratch | red velvet cheesecake brownies

 

This tried and tested recipe for Red Velvet Brownies has been one of the biggest successes in my bakery. My clients LOVE them and so do I!

 

Red Velvet Brownies
 
Author:
Serves: 8
Ingredients
FOR CHEESECAKE SWIRL:
  • 160 g cream cheese (medium fat 25%, non-aerated)
  • 25 g Granulated Sugar
  • 25 g Egg White
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
FOR RED VELVET BROWNIES:
  • 180 g Flour
  • 35 g Cocoa Powder
  • 5 g Salt
  • 210 g Unsalted Butter / Baking Margarine
  • 40 g 70% Dark Chocolate, finely chopped
  • 160 g White Sugar
  • 105 g Demerara Sugar
  • 2 tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 140 g Eggs (2 + left over egg from cheesecake mix)
  • 2 tsp Red Food Colouring (liquid)
  • 1 tsp White Spirit Vinegar
Instructions
  1. Spray the inside of a 17 x 27 x 3 cm (7 x 10,5 x 1 inch) brownie tin with non-tick cooking spray. Line the tin with baking parchment so that it goes up the sides and 3 cm over the rim. This makes the brownies easy to pull out once cooked and cooled. If you don’t have this specific size tin, an 8 x 8 inch tin will also work just fine.
  2. Start by making the cheesecake swirl. Place egg white and cream cheese in a small bowl. Beat together with a hand mixer till smooth and thickened – about 30 seconds. Beat in the sugar and vanilla for 10 seconds.
  3. At this point the sugar won’t dissolve yet, so place the bowl in the fridge for now. We’ll get back to it later.
  4. Next make the Red Velvet Brownies. Sift flour, Cocoa powder and salt in a large bowl, set aside.
  5. Melt the margarine/butter in a mixing bowl in the microwave for 2 mins. Swirl so that solid bits get distributed. Microwave for another 30 sec. It must boil before you continue.
  6. Transfer the melted butter to the bowl of your standing mixer (you can also continue by hand if you wish). Mix in the dark chocolate, granulated sugar and demerara sugar on medium speed with paddle attachment for 15 seconds. Leave to stand for 1 minute so that the sugars and chocolate can melt a bit.
  7. While you are waiting, combine the eggs, vanilla, vinegar and food colouring in a separate bowl. Don’t beat the ingredients. Just stir them till they are more or less combined. Set aside.
  8. Return to your stand mixer with the melted butter and sugar. Beat again for 15 seconds. The sugar should stick to the paddle when you lift it up. Add the egg mixture to the butter mixture. Beat on lowest speed for 10 seconds.
  9. Add dry ingredients to the bowl in one go. Beat on low speed till roughly combined. Scrape down the paddle and sides of the bowl. Beat on high speed for 30 seconds till the batter comes together and sticks to the sides of the bowl. Reduce speed to medium-low and continue beating for another 2 minutes.
  10. Preheat your oven to 170ºC/338ºF on the REGULAR BAKE SETTING (not convection/thermofan).
  11. Pour the Red Velvet Brownie Batter into your prepared tin. Place the pan in the fridge for 5 – 10 minutes, till the batter is cool and firms up a bit.
  12. In the meantime beat the cheesecake mix again. The sugar will now dissolve easily. Beat until smooth and moderately thick (about 30 seconds).
  13. Drop dollops of the cream cheese mix into the brownie batter. Swirl with a chopstick - see full post and video on technique! 
  14. Bake at 170ᵒC/338ºF for 33-37 minutes, turning after 15 minutes. You don’t want to over bake these Red Velvet Brownies, so keep a close eye on them. They are done when the cheesecake is set, but not browned. Also, a skewer should test clean, but barely so.
  15. Slice them up into however many squares you wish. Enjoy!
Notes
Store your Red Velvet Brownies in an airtight container at room temperature. They will last for 3 - 5 days.

 

If you give this recipe a go, tag me on facebook, twitter or instagram #philosophyofyum because I would LOVE to see!

Chat Soon!

Aurelia 🙂

 

Got a question? Something to add? Let’s chat in the comments section down below! (I respond to every single comment)