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Triple Decker Cheesecake

So all of you know, I married Baker Man because of his ability to bake desserts. And that is it, the only reason. Ok, I lie. He does have a few other redeeming qualities. When it comes to blogging however, I don’t think he quite gets it. And so he was a little difficult to work with while making the cheesecake. He was not too keen on being in the pictures – not even his hands. If I tried to snap one quickly he would drop everything and walk away. My shy Baker Man. And my impatient Baker Man. He wouldn’t give me much time in between steps to capture what he had done. So, I will just have to work with what I have.

But you don’t care about Baker Man, you care about this Triple Decker Cheesecake. This has been on both of our minds for several weeks and we finally got to it last weekend. The idea of it is fantastic. And we found that it works. The flavors we chose were chocolate, coffee and toffee. Here’s what you will need:

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As with most cheesecakes, you start with the crust. Chocolate of course. We made our own chocolate cookie crumbs – I mean Baker Man did but I might slip in a “we” now and then. I was there…that counts for something doesn’t it? Baker Man made his own crumbs because I couldn’t find any in the store – I couldn’t find chocolate wafers either.

If you also have to make your own, take two cups of graham cracker crumbs, ¼ cup of chocolate cocoa and mix it together.

Baker Man added 2 tablespoons of sugar, added a half stick of butter melted and gave it a good mixing. Press this mixture to the bottom and sides of springform pan. Make sure it is pressed in tight. Put in oven at 325 degrees for 6 minutes.

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A note on crust. You may want to add extra butter if it seems to dry. I think ours was a little dry. Also, if you have chocolate cookie crumbs, just mix those with butter and press. If you have chocolate wafers (or oreo cookies with the cream removed), throw those in to your food processor or crush to make crumbs and mix with the butter. Lots of options here. I bet an oreo crust would be incredible.

Now for the filling. Start by putting 2lbs of softened cream cheese into a large mixing bowl. Use the full fat stuff. Come on, this is cheesecake we are talking about. If you are going to splurge, splurge all of the way!

Add 1 1/3 cups of sugar and mix. 2 tbs all purpose flour and mix. Still mixing here, add eggs, 2 at a time for a total of 4. And those eggs should be at room temperature. 2 table spoons of vanilla extract and mix. 2 tablespoons of whipping cream….and mix.

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Don’t even think about it. Don’t think you can dump everything in a bowl and mix just once. Add one ingredient at a time and mix until smooth. Don’t doubt me here, just do it.

Now to make the different flavors. Take 2 cups of the mixture and put it in a medium bowl. Take another 2 cups and put it in another medium bowl. You are going to have some dishes to clean after this one.

In bowl number 1, add some melted chocolate. Melt 6oz of semi-sweet chocolate and mix it in the cream cheese mixture. I confess, we used some dark chocolate too.

In a teeny tiny bowl – ok, it doesn’t have to be that small. Mix 2 teaspoons of instant coffee with 1 tablespoon whipping cream.

Pour that into bowl number 2 and mix. Yes, there is a lot of mixing. Maybe you can just fold it in. Whatever makes you happy.

In bowl number three, toss in 2/3 cup of toffee bits. You could always crush about 3oz of Heath bars and use that. I used just toffee bits. Next time, I would probably toss in a lot more – at least a cup.

So the all important question. How do you layer the cheesecake? Start with the chocolate or whatever flavor you want on the bottom. Pour that into your pan and bake at 325 for 20 minutes.

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Then add the next flavor and bake for another 20 minutes.

Now get crazy, add the final flavor and bake for another 20 minutes.

After your cheesecake is done baking, leave it out until it gets to room temperature and then refrigerate until serving.

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Isn’t it pretty?

Ok, I know you are thinking this is not the best looking cheesecake you have ever seen but we are going to use it as a lesson in cheesecake baking.

Remember Paige talked about a water bath when she made her “Better Than Publix” Cheesecake? Well, we did not do a water bath. And we got cracks in our surface. Now, this is not going to stop me from eating a cheesecake but just wanted to point that out.

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Also, the top two layers were thinner than the bottom layer, and there is a lip around the outside edge of the cheese cake. Well, as Paige told me when dissecting the tastefulness of this cheesecake, that probably happened because the cheesecake puffed up and then fell. The water bath will help it cook at a more constant rate and would avoid that.

So this time, I would agree Paige was right. But it was still yummy, and we were lazy. It happens. And I won’t discourage you from being lazy when preparing your pan unless you want that perfect cheesecake.

Oh! I almost forgot! If you do want that perfect breathtaking cheesecake, consider some extras on top. Like some toffee bits, or shaved chocolate. Get creative. And while we are being creative, Baker Man and I are already trying to come up with new flavor combinations to use next time.

The moral of this story is, a layered cheesecake isn’t that hard, maybe just a little time consuming. So give it a try.

RECIPE

Crust
2 to 2 ½ cups chocolate cookie crumbs
Half stick of butter

Filling
2 pounds of softened cream cheese (4 bricks)
1 1/3 cups sugar
2 tablespoons all purpose flour
4 eggs at room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 tablespoons whipping cream
6 oz chocolate (semi-sweet)
1 cup toffee bits
2 teaspoons instant coffee

Prepare crust by mixing cookie crumbs and melted butter. Press into a spring form pan. Cook for 6 minutes at 325

For the filling, combine cream cheese, sugar, flour, eggs, vanilla and 2 tablespoons of whipping cream mixing thoroughly between each ingredient.

Separate mixture into 3 bowls by adding 2 cups of filling to 2 medium bowls. Add melted chocolate to one bowl. Mix instant coffee to a tablespoon of whipping cream and add to the second bowl. Add toffee bits to the third bowl and stir.

Add first flavor to pan and bake for 20 minutes at 325. Add second flavor and bake for another 20 minutes. Add final flavor and bake for 20 minutes.

Let stand until cheesecake is at room temperature. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

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