Cheesecake versus Cheesecake

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Until last night, I had never made cheesecake. My parents didn’t make it when I was a kid, so I guess I hadn’t really thought of it until i saw this recipe for banana Nutella cheesecake. Conversation ensued with roommate about the Philadelphia cream cheese cake recipe, so, with a snow day predicted (aka sleeping in today), I decided to hold a late night test kitchen.

Here are the recipes. Both make medium sized cheesecakes.

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Plain Cheesecake
(adapted from this recipe)
Crust
3 Tbsp butter, melted
3/4 cup graham cracker crumbs
1 Tbsp sugar
Cake
16 oz cream cheese (two 8 oz packages)
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 eggs

Line a loaf pan with parchment paper. Combine ingredients for crust and press into pan. Using an electric mixer, whip together cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla extract until just combined. Add eggs one at a time, mixing until just blended. Pour on top of crust. Bake at 325 for 40-45 minutes. Let cool before removing from pan.

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Banana Nutella Cheesecake
(adapted from this recipe)
Crust
2 ripe bananas
1/2 cup rolled oats
Cake
16 oz cream cheese (two 8 oz packages)
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 Tbsp granulated sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 eggs
3 Tbsp Nutella

Line a loaf pan with parchment paper. Mash bananas with a fork and then mix in the rolled oats. Press mixture into pan for crust. Using an electric mixer, whip together cream cheese, sugars, and vanilla extract until just blended. Add eggs one at a time, mixing until just blended. Pour into pan on top of crust. Warm up Nutella, then pour on top of cake and swirl in with a knife. Bake at 325 for 40-45 minutes. Let cool before removing from pan.

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The results!

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The Banana Nutella Cheesecake was good, but didn’t blow me away. My main problem was with the crust. The crust was too mushy and thick, and the flavor didn’t balance out the cake well. Also, it stuck to the parchment paper. Next time I would make the same crust as for the plain cheesecake. The Nutella was a good idea, added a little bit of chocolate to every bite! It also made this cake the better looking of the two. It’s so pretty!

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The plain cheesecake was A-MAZE-ING. Clear winner of the taste test. Creamy and sweet (but not overpoweringly so). The crust held together perfectly, and its sweetness balanced out the creamy, rich cheesecake. Yum.

I will definitely be making the plain cheesecake again. I can see it being popular at a potluck (especially all those Shape Note conventions). Quick oats could substitute for the graham crackers to make a gluten free version.

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Turns out classes were indeed cancelled, so I’m snowed in with my computer and cheesecake. Dangerous combination, but I’ll have to refrain from eating it all so that this weekend’s singing visitors can have a taste. Maybe I’ll cut more snowflakes to distract myself.

From snowy Philadelphia, hope you are staying warm.

backyard through the kitchen window

backyard through the kitchen window

1 comment
  1. Michele said:

    I am totally drooling while looking at those cakes! Great looking cakes for a first effort.

    Like

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