I was so pleased the other week to receive an invitation from the daaaahling Heavenly Housewife, to participate in her cheesecake challenge!!! Thank you HH for thinking of me and this little blog of mine!!! :)
If you haven’t already, do visit HH’s fabulicious site, From Donuts to Delirium: My Life as a Housewife as well as the stunning foodie site, Weird Combinations, co-authored by Steve, who is also hosting this event.
Sometime ago, HH took her readers on a virtual foodie trip to one of her favorite restaurants, the very chic Ottolenghi. With several locations (including the famous Notting Hill), HH took us to Ottolenghi’s flagship, an “upmarket Mediterranean, deli-style restaurant” in Islington. (And in case you’re wondering, this restaurant is more than a road trip away for most of you. Yeah, it’s in London). Regardless, it is a stunning eatery featuring food that looks amazing and sounds totally scrummy. Also on the menu, you will find the Caramel & Macadamia Cheesecake – the star of this post.
Try it & love it!
Caramel & Macadamia Cheesecake
(Adapted from Ottolenghi’s Cookbook)
For cheesecake you will need:
1 8 oz. package good-quality cream cheese, at room temperature
½ cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
½ cup soured cream
Icing sugar for dusting
For crust base you will need:
2 cups dry biscuits, (I used dry Ladyfinger biscuits)
2 tablespoons sugar
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
For nut topping:
1½ - 2 cups macadamia nuts
2 tablespoons brown sugar
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
For caramel sauce you will need:
¼ cup unsalted butter
¼ cup sugar
Approximately ½ cup whipping cream
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
To make base, whiz biscuits to crumbs in food processor. Mix with the melted butter to a wet, sandy consistency. Transfer to the lined tin and flatten to create a level base. Set aside.
To make the cake batter, beat cream cheese in stand mixer until smooth. Add sugar and then vanilla extract. Gradually mix in the eggs and soured cream, until smooth. Pour the cake mixture over the biscuit base and place in the oven. Bake for about 45 minutes.
To prepare nut topping by scatter the nuts over a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for about 15 minutes or until golden. Set aside. In a saucepan, place brown sugar and butter until a thick syrup forms. Carefully add the toasted nuts. When most of the nuts are completely coated, pour them back on to the lined tray and leave to set.
To make caramel sauce, combine butter and sugar in a thick-bottomed saucepan and stir constantly over medium heat, until the mixture becomes a smooth, dark caramel. Carefully add the whipping cream while stirring vigorously. Remove from heat and leave to cool.
To finish the cake, dust the edges and sides with plenty of icing sugar. Spoon the sauce in the centre, allowing it to spill over a little. Scatter the caramelized nuts and sprinkle again with icing sugar. If you like, drizzle a little bit more caramel sauce over each individual slice and serve with ice cream!
And please do not forget to check out all the other fabulous bakers taking part in this challenge!!!