Saturday, December 12, 2015

Red Velvet Cake Cheesecake

Upon sending this picture to my brother, he sent five different texts:






When I told him, he said, "Yeah, it's time for you to open a bakery."  I wish I could!  It's my dream!  This Red Velvet Cake Cheesecake was all that I hoped it would be and more.

Oh, friends... I have previously mentioned that I don't eat pumpkin pie on Thanksgiving.  The reason being... this.  This red velvet cake cheesecake.  This was ah-maz-ing.  Our friends came over for Thanksgiving dinner, and the husband saw this and said, "Um.. this looks like a professional store-bought dessert."  He later said, "One day, I'm going to be going into a store to see you walking out with a bunch of desserts that you claim to make on your own."  Not gonna happen!  Everyone was in a sugar Valhalla with this one.  Was it time-consuming?  Yes.  Was it worth every second?  Absolutely!

I made this again for a few friends to split, and one of the guys said that he was cursing m name with every bite because he couldn't resist it!  It really is an amazing dessert.

Just look at that.  There is a chocolate ganache layer on top of the Oreo crust as well as between the cheesecake and red velvet layer.  Cream cheese frosting is draped atop the red velvet cake layer.  That is garnished with more chocolate ganache and whipped cream sprinkled with Oreo crumbs.  Sweet mother of all that is holy.  Get in my belly!

red velvet layer (which is the best red velvet cake recipe you'll ever make):

cheesecake layer:

Cream cheese frosting:

Phew.  Get ready.  If you're not in the mood to spend hours on an amazing dessert, head to your closest bakery.  :)

Red Velvet layer ingredients:

1 c flour
1/2 t baking soda
1/2 t baking powder
1/2 t salt
1 T cocoa powder
1 c sugar
1/2 c vegetable oil
1 egg
1 c buttermilk
2 t vanilla
2-3 oz red food coloring
1 t white vinegar
1/2 c coffee

Cheesecake layer ingredients:

32 Oreo cookies, finely crushed
5 1/3 T butter

3 (8 oz.) packages of cream cheese, softened to room temperature
1 c sugar
1 1/2 T flour
2 t vanilla
3 eggs, room temperature

3/4 c heavy whipping cream
10 oz. semi-sweet chocolate chips

Cream Cheese Frosting:
8 oz cream cheese
1/2 c butter, room temperature
1 c powdered sugar
1 t pure vanilla extract

First, make the red velvet layer:

Preheat the over to 350.

Prepare a 9 inch cake pan.  Cut a piece of parchment paper to fit on the bottom of the pan.  Spray the parchment and sides of the pan with Pam.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cocoa powder.

In another large bowl, combine the sugar and oil.  Mix well.  Add in the egg, buttermilk, vanilla, and red food coloring.  Mix well.  Add in the coffee and vinegar.  Do not leave those out!

A little at a time, pour the flour mixture into the sugar, gently beating until well combined.

Pour into the prepared pan and bake for 30-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.  Set aside to cool.

Cheesecake layer:

Melt the butter in a medium bowl.  Add the finely crushed Oreo crumbs and mix well.  Press into a 9 inch springform pan.  Press into the bottom and all the way up the sides as well.

For the ganache, place the chocolate chips in a bowl.  Bring the cream to a simmer in a small saucepan over medium heat.  Once it starts to bubble on the sides, pour it over the chocolate chips.  Let the hot cream rest of the chips for 2-3 minutes.  Stir until smooth.

Pour 1/2 of the ganache over the uncooked Oreo crust.  Freeze for thirty minutes, or until the ganache is firm.

For the cheesecake filling, cream the cream cheese and sugar in your mixer with the paddle attachment.  Beat it on medium-high speed until it's smooth and creamy.  Add in the flour, beat well.  Add in the vanilla, mix well.  Add in the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.  Pour this mixture into the springform pan.  Place the pan on a cookie sheet.  Bake at 350 for 1 hour or until the top is puffy and slightly browned.  The center should jiggle only slightly when the pan is shaken.  If the whole thing still jiggles, bske it longer.  I think I ended up cooking it for 1 hour and 20 minutes.  Let it cool at room temperature for 30 minutes.

Once it's cool, top with the remaining ganache.  Remove the red velvet layer from the pan and place it on top of the ganache on the cheesecake layer.

Cream Cheese Frosting:
Beat the cream cheese in a mixing bowl with the whisk attachment on medium-high speed until fluffy.

Add the butter, two tablespoons at a time, beating well after each addition.

Turn the mixer off.  Add the vanilla and powdered sugar.  Turn mixer to low to incorporate everything.  Stop mixing once it is all blended.

Spread the cream cheese frosting on top of the red velvet cake layer.  I didn't use all the frosting in thus recipe.  Maybe save the remaining frosting for some cinnamon rolls the next day.

Garnish the top however you'd like!  I piped some ganache on top, added some whipped cream around the edges, and sprinkled on some Oreo crumbs.  Get creative.  Whatever you do will be delicious.

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