I *love* cheesecake. Which is not to say I love ALL cheesecakes. If it isn’t rich, creamy and absolutely luscious I’m not going to make it. Which means it needs to be the full-fat version. Heck, it’s not something I eat every day or even weekly. So if I am occasionally going to indulge in something that goes straight to my arteries and hips it sure better be worth it. And believe me, this brownie cheesecake recipe is just that!
This recipe is a combination of two cheesecake recipes. One is the famous Lindy’s cheesecake, the decadent, creamy, rich cheesecake that I grew up on and that I *love*. The second is Marcy’s Goldman’s Chocolate Eruption Cheesecake. I love her brownie crust and all the goodies (chocolate chips, candy bars, brownie chunks and caramel sauce) that went in it – but I didn’t care for the actual cheesecake recipe made with sweetened condensed milk. (However, Marcy is a fabulous baker and her “A Passion For Baking”, that contains her recipe, is one of my most used and beloved cookbooks)
This recipe is easily broken down into three parts: 1) The brownie base. Made first in a 9″ x 13″ pan, the contents of which will be used as a crust for the cheesecake and the rest to cut into small chunks and add to the batter. 2) The Lindy cheesecake – a very easy cheesecake to make, and 3) the delicious add-ins. It takes a bit of extra time because you need to make the brownies first (unless you are like one of my sister’s who would, instead, purchase a pan of brownies from her grocery bakery to save herself time and trouble. I think it’s a great idea!) but you can always do that a day or two in advance.
The secret to a fabulous cheesecake is knowing when to remove it from the oven. I learned from a superb lemon cheesecake recipe (to be shared this summer!) that a cheesecake is done when the temperature at its very center is 150F. It will still seem a bit jiggly but it stays in the turned off oven another hour and will firm then and as it cools. This method has never failed to turn out a luscious and creamy cheesecake every single time.
Let me also say that this makes a very large and full cheesecake. I actually invested in a small 6″ springform pan and end up making one regular size cheesecake and also a mini one. Cheesecakes freeze beautifully and I love having the little one on hand should I need it for last minute company.
One last thing. I am not upset in the least if my cheesecake cracks. I’ve never had anyone refuse to eat a slice because it had a crack. The best way to prevent a crack is to bake the cheesecake in a baine-maire (a water bath)* but it is quite a bit of work and, most of the time, not worth it to me. But I fully appreciate it if that’s the route you choose to go.
Chocolate Corruption Cheesecake
- 1 9″x13″ Brownie Mix, baked as directed, divided
- 2 1/2 lbs. cream cheese (Five 8 oz. packages)
- 1 3/4 cup sugar
- 3 Tbsp. flour
- 5 whole large eggs,
- 2 large egg yolks
- 1/4 tsp. vanilla
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 3 Snickers candy bars, cut up into 1/4″ pieces
- 1 12 oz. jar caramel topping/sauce
- 1 cup chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 325F.
Spray a 9″ or 10″ springform pan with non-stick cooking spray. From the brownie baking pan, cut pieces of brownies and place them in the bottom of the springform pan, squishing when necessary to fit. Do not worry if it doesn’t look great – it doesn’t matter at all and will be covered up by the cheesecake. The goal is simply to have the bottom of the springform pan covered with brownie.
In a large bowl (or in the bowl of a stand mixer) combine cream cheese, sugar and flour and beat until smooth (several minutes). Add eggs, egg yolks and vanilla and beat well. Stop after a minute to scrape down sides of bowl with spatula and then continue beating until incorporated. Add heavy cream and blend until incorporated.
To the prepared batter add the chocolate chips, candy bar pieces and left over brownie (cut into 1/2 – 1″ chunks) and fold in by hand until just incorporated.
Pour half of batter over the brownie bottom springform pan. Pour 1/2 of caramel topping over the batter and spread with a knife. Add the rest of the batter to the pan. Drop the remaining caramel topping by heaping tablespoons on top of the batter. Using a knife, swirl the topping so that the top looks decorative (see picture above). Place cheesecake in oven.
Start checking the cheesecake after 50 minutes by inserting an instant read thermometer into the center of cheesecake . When it reads 150 degrees Fahrenheit (the center will still be a bit jiggly) turn off the oven, prop open the door, and let the cheesecake sit for one hour. Then remove from oven, cool for another 2 hours before placing in the refrigerator at least 8 hours, preferably overnight, prior to serving.
*Basically you place the cheesecake pan in a larger pan and fill the pan, about 1/2 up with boiling water and then bake it in the oven. The water bath bakes the cheesecake evenly (with a consistent temperature) the entire time in it is in the oven.