for your baking pleasure
So first of all here's the recipe for the chocolate cheescake. It's ridiculously easy to make and I expect you all to report in after you've tried it out on your loved ones.
Philadelphia 3-Step Black Forest Cheesecake (from Philadelphia Cream Cheese Classic Recipes)
2 packages (8 oz/250g each) Philadelphia cream cheese, softened*
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla
4 squares Baker's semi-sweet chocolate, melted and slightly cooled
1 ready-to-use chocolate flavoured crumb crust (6 ounces or 9 inch)**
1 cup thawed Cool Whip whipped Topping***
1 1/2 cups cherry pie filling****
chocolate curls for garnish (optional)
Mix cream cheese, sugar and vanilla with electric mixer on medium speed until well blended. Add eggs; mix until blended. Stir in melted chocolate.
Pour into crust.
Bake at 350°F (180°C) for 35 - 40 minutes or until center is almost set. Cool. Refrigerate 3 hours or overnight. Spread whipped topping over chilled cheesecake; cover with pie filling. Sprinkle with chocolate curls if desired.
Notes if you live in Germany and want to make this:
*Cream cheese in Germany comes in 200g packages, so make sure you do the math and don't end up using too little
**Good luck finding a ready-made crumb crust here. You'll need to wing it and scout out some suitable chocolate cookies, bash them around a bit and use about 1 cup mixed with 2 Tbsp melted butter. Press into pie pan and bake about 10 mins at 350°F before adding cream cheese mixture.
*** No edible oil product available? Of course you can also use real whipped cream or some of that Rama Cremefine zum Schlagen stuff.
****I used Kirschgrütze as a substitute.
And since we're on the subject , here are the cakes Mr M bought himself for his birthday.
The three little ones were just right to have a bit of variety. The big one on the left was covered in a layer of marzipan and had whipped cream, sponge cake and ground hazelnuts inside. Oof. They all come frozen and all you need to do is thaw them for a couple of hours.
I feel he went a little overboard in the cake deparment, as usual, but in Germany you ARE supposed to supply your own birthday cake(s) and there wasn't much I could do about it...
...except to make even MORE cake! Yeah! I made a traditional Hannoversche Butterkuchen, a sheet cake that is typical to northern Germany and often served in the afternoon with coffee.
It's a sweet yeast dough that's rolled out in the pan, dotted with lots of butter and sprinkled with sugar. It's customary to make indentations in the dough with the end of a wooden spoon to create little pools of butter while the cake is baking. The end result is almost like a donut - very yeasty and buttery with a delicious, delicious sugar crust. Some people also put flaked almonds on top. We like it without.
I really wanted to eat the whole pan by myself but they wouldn't let me. Just wait until MY birthday.
Hannoversche Butterkuchen - Hannover Butter Cake (from Dr. Oetker's Die Besten Rezepte aus deutschen Landen - yes, that's really the title although the German seems weird)
1 package dry yeast
75 g sugar
1 package vanilla sugar
pinch of salt
250 ml lukewarm milk
75 g melted butter
500 g flour
Topping: 100-125 g butter
100 g sugar
75 g blanched, flaked almonds, optional
If making in bread machine, like I did: milk, butter, sugar, salt, vanilla sugar in bottom of bread machine pan, flour on top and yeast sprinkled on top of that. Set machine to dough cycle and remove when risen.
If mixing and kneading by hand: Mix ingredients the regular way, knead and let dough rise, covered, in a warm place until doubled. Punch down and proceed with recipe.
Roll out dough to fit into greased shallow 30 x 40 cm (about 12 x 16 inches) pan. With end of wooden spoon, make indentations in dough at regular intervals and fill with small blobs of butter. Sprinkle sugar and flaked almonds (if using) over all and let rise again until doubled. Bake at about 200°C(400°F) for 15 minutes or until golden brown. Let cool and cut into squares.