White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake

Have you ever found yourself staring at the dessert menu in a restaurant, unable to decide on just one item?  It’s a true crisis at times, especially when you want to order everything you see, but clearly your waistline doesn’t agree.  Your best option is to go out to eat with several people who have a weak spot for desserts so you can all share one, or everyone get something different to sample each one.  Numerous times I’ve been out with people who claim they don’t want dessert, but as soon as it hits the table, they’ve eaten more than I have.  How does that happen?

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I was caught in this exact situation while looking over the dessert menu at a small restaurant in St. Petersburg that brings their desserts in from a bakery.  We ended up each getting our own dessert, rotating them around the table like it was a professional taste-testing event, nodding and making noises with each bite.  I couldn’t believe the amazing flavor of white chocolate with swirled raspberry filling throughout this cheesecake and an Oreo cookie crust.  We even took chunks out of my friend’s husband’s carrot cake that was so nicely packed in a to-go box.  Acting as damage control, we were preventing him from feeling guilty over eating such a large piece of cake.  Now that’s heartfelt consideration.

White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake (modified from allrecipes.com)

20 Oreo cookies

3 tablespoons butter, melted

10 oz. package frozen raspberries, thawed

2 tablespoons sugar

2 teaspoons cornstarch

1/2 cup water

2 cups white chocolate chips

1/2 cup heavy cream

3 (8 oz.) packages cream cheese, softened

1/2 cup sugar

3 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

frozen whipped topping, thawed (optional for serving)

In a food chopper or food processor, chop cookies into fine crumbs.  In a medium bowl, mix together cookie crumbs and melted butter. Press mixture into the bottom of a 9 inch springform pan.  In a small saucepan, combine raspberries, 2 tablespoons sugar, cornstarch, and water. Bring to boil, and continue boiling 5 minutes, or until sauce is thick. Strain sauce through a mesh strainer to remove seeds.  Preheat oven to 325 degrees. In a microwave safe bowl, heat cream just until boiling, pour over chocolate chips in a small bowl, stirring together until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth.  Let cool.  In a large bowl, mix together cream cheese and 1/2 cup sugar  with electric mixer until smooth. Beat in eggs one at a time. Blend in vanilla and melted white chocolate.

Pour half of batter over crust. Spoon 3 tablespoons raspberry sauce over batter. Pour remaining cheesecake batter into pan, and again spoon 3 tablespoons raspberry sauce over the top. Swirl batter with the tip of a knife to create a marbled effect.  Bake for 60-70 minutes, or until filling is set. Cool, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 8 hours before removing from pan. Serve with remaining raspberry sauce and whipped topping.  Store in refrigerator.

Cookies ‘n Cream Fudge

During the holidays, you tend to see a lot of fudge floating around.  The most common flavors that I see are your basic chocolate and then of course, peanut butter.  After making some peanut butter fudge for my family, I wanted to see what some other popular flavors were that we hadn’t tried out yet…then I came across this one.

oreo fudge

How in the world could I have missed this?  As much as we love Oreos?  Good grief.  I jumped all over this recipe the second I found it.  There were so many wonderful things about this recipe…it’s easy, there are only a few ingredients involved, and they are absolutely delicious.  If you make gift tins around the holidays to give out to family and friends, these little guys make great fillers for those little spaces that look a little too empty.

Cookies ‘n Cream Fudge Recipe:

18 oz. white chocolate (wafers, bark, or chips)

14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk

3 cups Oreos, broken up into thick pieces

In a saucepan over low/medium heat, melt chocolate with sweetened condensed milk, stirring constantly to avoid scorching.  After chocolate has melted completely, remove from heat and stir in Oreos.  Line 8×8 inch baking dish with wax paper, spoon mixture into dish.  Place in refrigerator to set for at least two hours.  Turn chocolate out onto cutting board, remove wax paper, and cut into squares.  Store in refrigerator.

**For a fancier presentation, spoon the mixture into chocolate molds of your choice.  Squares, circles, rectangles, candy bar molds, the options are endless!

2012 Super Bowl Cake

I couldn’t resist!  To be honest, I wasn’t totally happy with how this cake turned out, but did make some notes for the next football field cake that I make.  This is a 2 layer 11×15 inch yellow cake with mini chocolate chips, chocolate filling in between the layers, and covered in buttercream icing.

All of the letters are made out of white chocolate, the football is made out of milk chocolate.  I used edible spray paint to cover the Super Bowl letters to give them a silver color.

New Year’s Cake

Here we are, 2012!  Can’t believe it’s been another year…that seems to be the thing I say the most every New Year.  It never gets old, I guess!  Well, what better way to bring in the New Year with a cake, right??  Right!

The bottom tier is a 2 layer 12 inch square cinnamon cake with cream cheese icing in between the layers, covered with buttercream icing.  The top tier is a 3 layer 8 inch square chocolate cake with chocolate icing in between the layers, covered with chocolate icing that is tinted black.  After the icing had time to crust (harden), which takes about 15-20 minutes, I used a Viva paper towel to put on top of the cake, and smoothed it out as best as I could.

I had a hard time finding exactly what I wanted in order to make the fireworks for the cake, so I decided to make them.  I went to Wal Mart in the arts and crafts section, and found what I needed to make my own little fireworks…and was very happy with how they turned out.  The numbers are made out of white chocolate, and I used edible silver spray paint to give them the silver, shimmery look.  I combined a little bit of the black icing with the white icing to make the gray, and decorated with that color.  In my head, the colors for New Year’s are black, white and silver…not sure why, but that’s just what popped in my head when brainstorming a theme for this cake.  I can’t wait to cut into this big guy!