I just realized that it’s been practically forever since I shared a recipe with you guys. I don’t know why, really. I guess I haven’t been very adventurous in the kitchen lately. Being on a never-ending diet kind of does that to you. I mean, I doubt that salad with chunks of chicken in it would be all that exciting to anyone, right?
I first had this cheesecake last Thanksgiving (as in 2012) when Heather tried to burn down my house with the dripping buttery crust of death. It was a nightmare that I’m still fighting, because my oven STILL smokes every time I turn it on. (And I’ve cleaned it quite a few times, I guess burnt-on butter and toffee just really likes to stay where it is.)
But this cheesecake was so stinkin good that I couldn’t banish it from my thoughts forever, like I kind of wanted to. So I made it again this year. Twice, actually. The crust is pretty much the best thing I’ve ever tasted. I’m not even joking.
Toffee and Caramel Cheesecake
Adapted (slightly) from here.
3 cups crushed graham crackers
1 cup butter, melted
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup Heath toffee bits
1 1/4 cup chocolate baking melts (or chocolate chips)
**I swear I took photos of the steps, but I can’t for the life of me find them.**
Combine everything except the chocolate and press into the sides of a springform pan that is lined with parchment paper. Press up the sides (as you can see from my photo, I didn’t press up the sides far enough). Sprinkle the baking melts over the crust and SET ON A BAKING PAN (I can’t emphasize this part enough). Bake at 300 degrees for 5-7 minutes or until the chocolate is melted. Remove from oven, spread the chocolate evenly with a spatula and set in the refrigerator or freezer while you prepare the rest of the cheesecake.
1/2 cup sugar
3 TBSP butter
2 TBSP light corn syrup
1/3 cup heavy cream
Combine the sugar and syrup in a small saucepan and cook on medium heat, stirring occasionally with a spatula. Add the butter once the mixture is caramel colored (this will seem to take forever; don’t rush it) and stir until melted. Add the cream and stir until combined. Return to heat if it gets lumpy and stir until smooth. Makes 3/4 cup. Refrigerate what you don’t use immediately.
3 packages of cream cheese, softened
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 cup sour cream
1 TBSP vanilla
1/4 cup caramel topping
Beat the cream cheese, sour cream, and sugar together for several minutes until well-blended and smooth. Add the vanilla and caramel and continue to beat well. Add the eggs one at a time and mix just until combined. Pour into the chilled crust and place the springform pan back on the baking sheet. (I found every time I made this that I had way too much batter – just fill to the top of the pan and don’t use the rest. Trust me on this one.) Bake for 1 hour and 20 minutes at 300. It will be jiggly when it comes out – but if it seems TOO jiggly, return it to the oven for a few more minutes. Don’t ask how I know this.)
Remove from oven and cool for 30 minutes, then refrigerate overnight.
1 cup whipping cream
3 TBSP powdered sugar
1/2 cup caramel topping
1/2 cup toffee bits
Beat the whipping cream and sugar until stiff peaks form.
Combine the caramel and toffee bits and spread over the cheesecake. Then pipe the whipped topping along the edges and add more toffee bits to the center if you’d like.
This bad boy does take some time to prepare, but sample the crust once and tell me it’s not worth it. It may even be worth having burned butter all over my oven for eternity.
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