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Posts Tagged ‘salted caramel’

You know how you go on Pinterest and pin all these decorating ideas, DIY projects, and most of all, recipes?  I’m not huge on the Pinterest scene, but I pinned something a while back and finally decided to try it.  The Salted Caramel Cheesecake.  It got a lot of attention on Pinterest and I think the comments to the original post (published in 2011) have been closed, so I thought I’d post my comment here.

I was a little afraid of this at first because quite frankly the amount of salt in the original recipe is astounding.  I made some adjustments and served the cheesecake at a Father’s Day/Birthday celebration for my mom and dad.  To see the original recipe, click right here.

This photo is credited to The Modern Apron. I forgot to take a picture of my finished product. My caramel didn’t have the deep brown color as this one because I was afraid of scorching it. It was still very tasty though.

Here’s how I made the cheesecake:

Crust

15 graham crackers
3 Tbsp sugar
1 stick butter, melted

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Place crackers in a plastic bag and crush with a rolling pin until they turn into fine crumbs. Put crumbs into a medium bowl. (I crushed half the crumbs in the bag, emptied into a bowl, then did the same to the second half of the crackers.) Add sugar and butter to cracker crumbs and mix until all are combined and the mixture is crumbly.

2. Transfer the mixture to a 10” springform pan sprayed with cooking spray. Pat crumb mixture into the bottom of the pan, and up the sides about 2”.

3. Bake crust until slightly brown, about 8-10 minutes. Remove crust from the oven and allow to cool completely on a rack.

Cheesecake

3 8-oz packages cream cheese, room temperature
1 14-oz can dulce de leche*
2 Tbsp flour
1 1/4 cup sugar
1 Tbsp pure vanilla extract
4 large eggs, room temperature

* Apparently you can find dulce de leche in the Latin section of the grocery store.  I couldn’t find it in my neighborhood store, so I made it myself.  Empty one 14-oz can of sweetened condensed milk into a double boiler and cook over simmering water for 1 to 1 1/2 hours.  It will turn darker, thick and caramely.  Whisk it smooth and let cool a bit before using it in the cheesecake recipe.

Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.

1.  In a stand mixer beat the cream cheese until smooth.  Add dulce de leche and beat to combine.

2.  Add flour and beat to combine, scraping sides when necessary.  Beat until smooth and fluffy, about 5 minutes.  There should be no lumps.

3.  Add sugar and beat to combine.

4.  Add vanilla and combine.  Then add eggs one at a time, combing thoroughly after each.  Don’t overbeat as that will cause the cheesecake to puff up too much and cause the surface to crack.

5.  Pour cream cheese mixture into cooled crust and smooth the top. 

6.  Bake at 300 degrees F for 55-65 minutes.  The center will be a little wiggly, but the edges will be puffed up and have a nice golden color.  Cool completely on a wire rack, then refrigerate for at least 8 hours.  This allows the cheesecake to become the rich denseness it should be.

Caramel

1/2 cup granulated sugar
3 Tbsp water
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 Tbsp butter
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp pure vanilla extract

1. In a large saucepan over medium heat, combine the sugar and water. Swirl to combine.
 
2. Continue cooking until the sugar turns golden brown, swirling occasionally. You’re looking for something that’s about the color of dark honey.  It should take 3-5 minutes.  Or more.  Keep a close eye on it as caramelizing sugar goes from perfect to ruined in a split second.
 
3. Remove from heat and carefully add the butter, then the cream. Don’t wait until the butter is melted; toss in the butter, give it a whisk, then pour in the cream. It will foam up, seize, and otherwise look like a total failure. Persevere! Add the vanilla extract and salt and continue whisking.
 
4. Return to medium low heat and whisk until smooth. (Added note: if your caramel is too thin, let it cook for a while over a low heat.)  Allow to cool slightly, about 15 minutes.
 
5. Remove cheesecake from the refrigerator and pour caramel over the top, letting it pool in the middle.
 
6. Return the cheesecake to the refrigerator to let the caramel set, about 30 minutes. To serve, cut in slices with a sharp knife.
 
This dessert was a definite challenge but everyone loved it.  The original recipe has many more teaspoons of kosher salt in the crust and in the cheesecake, but I thought the amount of salt in the caramel was enough for the whole cake.  I can’t imagine having more throughout the cake, but if you’d like to try it out, follow the original recipe.
 
I’ll definitely make it again, for a large group, of course.  This cheesecake will serve 12-16 people.  If you decide to try it, I’d love to hear how it turned out and how you liked it.
 
Happy baking!

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