Turtle Pecan Cheesecake Recipe

turtlecheesecakeVanilla Cheesecake topped with a layer of Chocolate Ganache, chewy Caramel and Toasted Pecan with a Chocolate Cookie Crust
Ingredients
Chocolate Crust:
1/2 Cup Butter — small dice
1/2 Cup brown sugar
1/2 Cup pecans
1/2 Cup flour
1 pinch of salt
2 1/2 Tablespoon cocoa powder
Cheesecake filling:
3 8 ounce packages cream cheese, room temperature
1 cup + 2 tablespoons sugar
5 Tablespoon cornstarch
1 cup + 3 tablespoons sour cream
3 eggs
1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
Chewy Turtle Caramel:
1/2 Cup sugar
1/2 Cup Light corn syrup
1/8 Cup water
1/2 Cup cream
1/4 Teaspoon salt
2 Tablespoon butter
1/4 Cup cream
Chocolate Ganache:
1/2 Cup cream
1 Tablespoon sugar
1 Tablespoon Light corn syrup
1/2 Cup Dark Chocolate, chopped
1 Tablespoon room temperature butter
Preparation
Chocolate Crust:
Combine together the flour, sugar, almond flour, salt and cocoa powder. Add diced butter to dry mix and rub with fingers until mixture becomes crumbly. Crumble dough evenly into a 9 inch spring form pan. Bake crust for 10 minutes at 325F. Let cool before filling with cheesecake batter.
Cheesecake filling:
Mix sugar and corn starch together. In a mixing bowl with the paddle attachment on medium speed mix the cream cheese, sugar and corn starch until smooth. Add vanilla extract and an egg, mix until incorporated. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl and mix until there are no lumps. Add remaining eggs slowly, one at a time. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl and mix until there are no lumps. Add sour cream and mix until smooth. Fill prepared cheesecake pan. Bake at 200F for 1 1/2 hours. Shut off oven and crack open door, let cheesecake cool in oven for an hour. Refrigerate overnight before decorating.
Chewy Turtle Caramel:
In a bowl combine sugar, corn syrup, and water. Pour sugar mixture into pot, being careful to keep it off the sides. Cook on high heat until it reaches 250F. Carefully stir in cream, salt and then butter. Continue to cook until golden brown. Stir regularly to avoid bottom from burning. Mixture should be very thick and caramel color, then add 1/4 cup of cream and cook to 225F. Transfer caramel to hotel pan and allow to cool undisturbed.
Chocolate Ganache:
Combine cream, sugar, and corn syrup and bring to simmer over medium heat. Pour hot cream over chopped chocolate and let sit for 3 minutes before stirring. Stir chocolate mixture with a spatula until mixture is super smooth and shiny. Add butter and continue to mix until incorporated. Wrap with plastic film and leave in a cool place for 6 hours to thicken.
To decorate:
Spread chocolate ganache on top of cheesecake, then layer on ¾ cup toasted pecans followed by a drizzle of caramel. Cut in 8-12 slices and enjoy.

via Turtle Pecan Cheesecake | Recipe | Fox News.

I'm Making a Candycane Vanilla Sort of Cheesecake Tonight

Simply Recipes has The Perfect Cheesecake and Chatelaine has a Classic Cheesecake recipe. I’ve used these – but mostly just to make sure I didn’t forget anything, like the sugar (I only did it once!).

The Perfect Cheesecake was a bit interesting because they have iced it. I might do the same. I have candycane Kiss chocolates to put on top. The icing might be just the right thing to hold them in place and look prettier too.

Perfect Cheesecake Recipe
Cook time: 3 hours

INGREDIENTS
Crust
2 cups (475 ml) of Graham cracker crumbs (from a little less than 2 packages Graham crackers
2 Tbsp sugar
Pinch salt
5 Tbsp (70 g) unsalted butter (if using salted butter, omit the pinch of salt), melted

Filling
2 pounds cream cheese (900 g), room temperature
1 1/3 cup granulated sugar (270 g)
Pinch of salt
2 teaspoons vanilla
4 large eggs
2/3 cup sour cream (160 ml)
2/3 cup heavy whipping cream (160 ml)

Toppings
2 cups sour cream (475 ml)
1/3 cup powdered sugar (35 g)
1 teaspoon vanilla
12 ounces (340 g) fresh raspberries
1/2 cup granulated sugar (100 g)
1/2 cup water (120 ml)

Special equipment needed
9-inch, 2 3/4-inch high springform pan
Heavy-duty, 18-inch wide aluminum foil
A large, high-sided roasting pan

Prepare the crust

1 Prepare the springform pan so that no water leaks into it while cooking.* Place a large 18-inch by 18-inch square of aluminum foil on a flat surface. Place the springform pan in the middle of the foil. Gently fold up the sides of the foil around the pan. Make sure to do this gently so that you don’t create any holes in the foil. If there are any holes, water will get into the pan and ruin the crust. Press the foil around the edges of the pan. Place a second large square of foil underneath the pan, and repeat, gently folding up the sides of the foil around the pan and pressing the foil against the pan. Gently crimp the top of the foil sheets around the top edge of the pan.

2 Preheat oven to 350°F, with rack in lower third of oven. Pulse the graham crackers in a food processor or blender until finely ground. Put in a large bowl, and stir in the sugar and salt. Use your (clean) hands to stir in the melted butter.

3 Put all but 1/4 cup of the graham cracker crumbs in the bottom of the springform pan. (Save the remaining 1/4 cup for if you happen to have any holes that need to be filled in, either while you are making the crust, or after the cake has cooked and you’ve unmolded it.) Gently press down on the crumbs using your fingers, until the crumbs are a nice even layer at the bottom of the pan, with maybe just a slight rise along the inside edges of the pan. Be careful as you do this, as not to tear the aluminum foil. Place in the oven for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool. Reduce the oven temperature to 325°F.
Make the filling

4 Cut the cream cheese into chunks and place in the bowl of an electric mixer, with the paddle attachment. Mix on medium speed for 4 minutes until smooth, soft and creamy. Add the sugar, beat for 4 minutes more. Add the salt and vanilla, beating after each addition. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating for one minute after each addition. Add the sour cream, beat until incorporated. Add the heavy cream, beat until incorporated. Remember to scrape down the sides of the mixer bowl, and scrape up any thicker bits of cream cheese that have stuck to the bottom of the mixer that paddle attachment has failed to incorporate.
Cook the cheesecake

5 Place the foil-wrapped springform pan in a large, high-sided roasting pan. Prepare 2 quarts of boiling water. Pour the cream cheese filling into the springform pan, over the graham cracker bottom layer. Smooth the top with a rubber spatula. Place the roasting pan with the springform pan in it, in the oven, on the lower rack. Carefully pour the hot water into the roasting pan (without touching the hot oven), to create a water bath for the cheesecake, pouring until the water reaches halfway up the side of the springform pan, about 1 1/4 inches. (Alternatively you can add the water before putting the pan in the oven, whichever is easier for you.) Cook at 325°F for 1 1/2 hours.

6 Turn off the heat of the oven. Crack open the oven door 1-inch, and let the cake cool in the oven, as the oven cools, for another hour. This gentle cooling will help prevent the cheesecake surface from cracking.

7 Cover the top of the cheesecake with foil, so that it doesn’t actually touch the cheesecake. Chill in the refrigerator for a minimum of 4 hours, or overnight.
Prepare sour cream topping

8 Place sour cream in a medium sized bowl, stir in the powdered sugar and vanilla, until smooth. Chill until you are ready to serve the cake.
Note that this recipe produces enough sour cream topping for a thick topping and some extra to spoon over individual pieces of cheesecake, if desired. If you would like a thinner layer of topping and no extra, reduce the sour cream topping ingredients in half.

Prepare the raspberry sauce

9 Place raspberries, sugar, and water in a small saucepan. Use a potato masher to mash the raspberries. Heat on medium, whisking, about 5 minutes, until the sauce begins to thicken. Remove from heat. Let cool.
Prepare the cake to serve.

10 Remove the cake from the refrigerator. Remove the foil from the sides of the pan, and place the cake on your cake serving dish. Run the side of a blunt knife between the edge of the cake and the pan. Dorie recommends, and we’ve done with success, that you use a hair dryer to heat the sides of the pan to make it easier to remove. Open the springform latch and gently open the pan and lift up the sides. Spread the top with the sour cream mixture. Serve plain or drizzled with raspberry sauce.

Yield: Makes 16 servings.

Canadian Pie-In-A-Jar

This perfectly packaged treat by Mijune Pak pulls in the best of all provinces! Find her foodie blog, Follow Me Foodie.

From Food Network Canada –  Recipe to Riches

Preparation time:

Cooking time: 70 minutes

Yield: 8

Ingredients

Pastry

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1/3 cup marzipan (4 oz/120 g)

1/2 cup cold unsalted butter, cut in cubes

3 tablespoons slivered almonds

1 unit egg yolk

6 tablespoons ice water

Vanilla Custard

1 1/2 cups 35% whipping cream

2 tablespoons maple syrup

unit Seeds from 1 vanilla bean

5 unit egg yolks

3/4 cup granulated sugar

Filling

3 unit ripe but firm Bartlett pears

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

1/4 cup packed brown sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon ground cardamom

2 tablespoons cornstarch

Brulée

1/4 cup granulated sugar

Directions

Pastry

Grease bottom of eight 1 cup (250 mL) wide mouth mason jars. In bowl and using fingertips, blend together flour and marzipan until fine consistency. Work in cold butter until mixture has coarse crumb consistency. Using fork, stir in almonds. Mix egg yolk and ice water; pour over flour mixture and toss with fork just until dough comes together. Gather into a ball. Flatten into a disc. Wrap in plastic. Chill for 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 375F (190C).

Divide pastry into eight equal portions; press one portion firmly into bottom of each prepared mason jar (not up sides). Pierce a few times with tines of fork. Place on baking sheet. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until golden brown. Set aside. Reduce oven temperature to 350F (180C).

Vanilla Custard

In saucepan, heat cream, maple syrup and vanilla bean seeds over medium-high heat until bubbles form around edge of pan and mixture is steaming; remove from heat. In bowl, whisk yolks with sugar until thickened and creamy. Gradually whisk in hot cream mixture. Return mixture to saucepan; cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until custard thickens and coats back of a spoon, about 2 to 4 minutes. Strain through fine-meshed sieve into a bowl. Place piece of plastic wrap on surface of custard. Set aside.

Filling

Peel and core pears. Cut into 3/4 inch (2 cm) cubes. In nonstick frying pan, melt butter over medium heat; cook pears until slightly softened, stirring gently, about 4 to 5 minutes. Stir in sugar, salt and cardamom until sugar dissolves. In small bowl, whisk cornstarch into 2 tbsp (25 mL) water; stir into pear mixture and cook until thickened, about 30 to 60 seconds. Divide evenly among mason jars. Pour cooled Vanilla Custard over warm pears, dividing evenly.

Place mason jars in a large shallow baking dish. Add hot water to half way up side of jars. Bake in centre of oven for 25 to 30 minutes or until custard is set but slightly jiggly at centre. Carefully remove from water bath; cool to room temperature. Refrigerate until cold and custard is set, at least 2 hours.

Brulée

Preheat broiler. Sprinkle each pie with 1-1/2 tsp (7 mL) sugar. Carefully broil until sugar caramelizes. (Alternatively, use kitchen torch.) Serve immediately, or close jars and store in refrigerator. Best served at room temperature.

via Canadian Pie-In-A-Jar.

This one didn’t make it to the final two but the idea is so cute! I think the recipe is a bit complicated. I’d try adapting it to make it simpler and use less fancy ingrediants, like the marzipan and almonds (sometimes almonds give me an allergic reaction, not always though).

Looking for a Vanilla Orchid to Wear

I know we should be gearing up for Christmas decorating, fashions and shopping. But, I’ve been inspired to find a vanilla orchid brooch. They are such fancy little flowers and I see them so often, each time I buy my favourite coffee, ice cream, and so on. I am a vanilla whore. I also adore caramel and if chocolate becomes involved… well, let’s just say I’m happy.

So I got the idea to look for something like a vanilla orchid that I could wear.

These (from Love is a Rose) are pretty but not what I had in mind exactly. I think I just want something in the right colour, that creamy off-white, with maybe the slightest touch of pale rose. I really like the look of these. I’d be happy to wear a row of three or five of them. You could line them up like your own personal orchid garden right on your shirt.

This one sold at auction with Christies and was created by Tiffany and Co. It’s wonderful but, more orchid than I had in mind. I was thinking of something simpler. This is an orchid I would wear like a corsage.

This one was also sold through Christies. Created by Rene Boivin with diamonds and citrine. This one may just be the winner, not because it was the orchid I had in mind but because it is far too glamorous and sparkly to be denied.

If you just want an orchid of a certain botanical type, you will find it at Elegant Orchid. They don’t have gemstones but they are detailed and beautiful by design.

The Down the Drain Circle of the Days of Our Lives

I feel like I’m made of broken glass. I don’t know how I will keep my patience babysitting for a weekend. I just will, somehow. Though one of my sister’s daughters just seems to rub me the wrong way and she’s only six. So you can’t really do much about it.

Today the repair person was out for the washer from Sears. It’s going to be another week without a clothes washer. He is bringing a part out next week. I have a garbage bag halfway full of very wet and heavy laundry which got wet but not washed. I will lug it around to my sister’s house and was it there. At least I’m saving water, bringing most of it with me. See how green you can be when you really put your mind to it!

The new tenant is moving into the new basement apartment tomorrow. I don’t know how that will be. I only saw him for a few seconds once. My first impression was that he was a scruffy looking young guy. There is no door to keep him from coming upstairs into the rest of the house. Why is it that my brother who enjoys pulling cons and talking about ways to take advantage of the system is so shockingly trusting when it comes to something like this? If you meet someone once and they don’t try to kill you off or something that means you can trust them with everything you own. I just don’t see it that way. If I wake up and some guy I don’t know is standing over my bed watching me sleep I will not be polite about telling him to vacate the premises.

Also, we now have the basement empty of everything we had stored down there. One small room which has the water heater has some storage. My brother has gone bananas though and tried to get everything out of there too. So my bedroom is now full to the rafters with as much as I could save from him. I don’t want everything in the garage or thrown out, thanks anyway. I did tell him/ remind him that we do still have the water heater room and can put some things in there. So some of it went back down there again. Mostly some antique furniture and a little of the Christmas stuff. My Xmas tree however is in a well ripped up box and shucked into the garage where I know mice will be nesting in it. I will be so eager to put that tree up again, NOT.

My bedroom light seems to have gone out. I won’t even mention it to him cause he will just start yelling at me again.

He still wants to put all my yarn in that basement room where I won’t be able to use any of it cause the plan is to only store stuff down there that we don’t use often. So that the basement can be left for the tenant. But, if he keeps putting everything I own down there I will be going down there often or just giving up on everything, which I feel really close to doing at this point. I know it is just being stressed out, feeling trapped and being told what to do. Things I have never liked or tolerated well. Usually I just stay quiet and choose my battles. But when it is forced on me for months and months and years… I am getting a bit crazy at this point. I feel like I don’t actually have a place anywhere. I really want a place of my own, where I can live. I think I will just go nuts the way things always keep going.

Probably there are people in the world who wouldn’t be bothered by any of this and wonder what my problem is. But that isn’t me.

At least I have a nice coffee again. I was using a generic French Vanilla from the PC grocery store. It used to be ok, it’s not ok any more. I won’t buy it again. Even the Second Cup coffee doesn’t seem as good as it used to be. Maybe it’s just me and the broken glass feeling which seems to be sinking into every cell of my body. I hope coffee starts to taste good again when some of this is over.

I caught up most of the bills, had payments on everything but Rogers. I cancelled Rogers cause the Internet is like high speed dial up. I tested it out and I really can read a few pages of a book while I wait for each site or page of a site to load. Why would anyone pay $150 a month for Rogers service? They really messed up the phone too. The cable seemed ok but I can’t find the channels I want to watch. With Bell I was able to set favourites and search through only those channels. Made it much easier. I’m glad I will be starting again with Bell next month.

I hope I am home for Doodle Week, staring on Monday. I don’t want to see that die off. Been hard to feel creative or anything. But I don’t want to give up on it.

By Monday most of the stuff will be done. Sears will fix the clothes washer. The apartment will be rented and whatever will be will be with that. Graham, my brother, won’t be coming out here almost everyday complaining about everything I do or think or dare to say. I even have Rogers handled, for now, I think. I explained that I’m not employed and paying Rogers isn’t a priority. After all, what does it matter if you have Internet and cable if your power has been cut off. Stupid big company bastards.

I do want to find a job. Well, not really. I really don’t want to be listening to anyone else wining or making rules any more. But I do want a pay cheque to spend on bills and the odd latte. I could really start doing work for that BOTW site. I want to, I just can’t seem to settle in and stick with it. It doesn’t help that my room is so full of clutter right now and I’m wondering what else my brother decided to throw away.

Anyway, I don’t know when they are coming but they should be coming soon to pick me up for another round of babysitting. Just two days of sleeping on the broken couch and then I will be back here. Makes you have a whole new appreciation for your own bed, no matter what else is going on in your life your bed is always there, waiting for you to snuggle in.