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Blog Archive - December 14, 2011

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December 14, 2011 - Candy Cane Cheesecake
Click here for short instructions

No decorations needed, and yet you'll have a fancy cake decorating your Christmas table. And cheesecake even sounds a little more special than cake. So here you have it: a candy-cane peppermint cheesecake:

Candy Cane Cake

To make this cake, you'll need a Cake-Shaping Strip (look here about how to make one), heavy-duty aluminum foil, a tray or sheet pan, prepared cake batter (see the Peppermint Cheesecake recipe below or use about 2 boxes of cake mix).

First, make a Cake-Shaping Strip as described here using nine sushi-mat segments. Line a sheet pan with 2 sheets of aluminum foil. Shape the strip into a shape of a candy cane. Wrap the bottom foil sheets around the strip, tearing it where needed to wrap it. Push small loosely packed balls of foil along the bottom outer perimeter wherever you think that the batter might leak due (e.g., where you tore the foil). Essentially, just add foil however you need to fully wrap around the bottom of the strip.

Candy Cane Cake

Now prepare your cake or cheesecake batter. You can make the batter using about two boxes of cake mix, or you can use the recipe below. Either way, I think it's fun to dye half of the batter red, so you have some candy cane stripes. I'll show you to do that in a minute, but first make the batter.

Peppermint Cheesecake
Ingredients:
3 cups crushed vanilla sandwich cookie crumbs
1/2 cup butter, melted
5 (8-ounce packages) cream cheese, softened
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup flour
4 eggs
1 cup sour cream
1 cup crushed peppermint candies (or 2 teaspoons peppermint extract)
Red food dye

Instructions:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a pan with cooking spray.

2. Mix the cookie crumbs and butter together. Press the crumb mixture into the bottom of the pan.

3. Beat together the cream cheese, sugar, flour, eggs and sour cream. Divide the cream-cheese mixture in half.

4. To the first half of the mixture, add in the peppermint candies (or peppermint extract) and the red food dye.

5. Either use folded aluminum foil to create sections in the pan for the red and white portions, and spoon the cream-cheese mixtures into the portions. Alternatively, spread the red cream-cheese mixture on the white cream-cheese mixture and swirl the two using a table knife.

6. Bake for about 45 minutes or until done.

*****

In a bit more detail, you can see in the picture below that the crumb crust is first pressed into the bottom of the candy-cane pan. Then the foil dividers were stuck diagonally within the pan.

Candy Cane Cheesecake

Then add in the batter, alternating red and white in neighboring sections:

Candy Cane Cheesecake

And remove the dividers before baking:

Candy Cane Cheesecake

Bake until done. The crust is rather buttery. If some melted butter oozes out during baking, just use a paper towel to wipe it up once it's out of the oven. When the cake is completely cool, carefully separate the strip from the cake. Insert a flat end of a table knife between the cake and strip to help the separation if that helps. Are you one of those rare people who can make a cheesecake without it cracking? I've never mastered that, but the cheesecake still looks pretty:

Candy Cane Cheesecake
Candy Cane Cheesecake

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