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Tuesday, December 30, 2008

TWD: Tall & Creamy Toffee Cheesecake

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I wanted to take this opportunity to thank Laurie for starting this amazing group. As she already knows, this is my weekly therapy session and I don't know where I would be without it! Thank you so much to all of you who come here each week and leave comments. There really aren't words to express how much it means to me. I hope that the coming year is a joyful, peaceful and prosperous one for all of you! I also want to thank Dorie for such an amazing book with such a wonderful array of not only recipes, but stories and insight and ideas that a group like this can be formed around. At our house, this is the go-to book for all ideas and is commonly referred to as The Big Baking Book by my five year old, who loves to flip through the pages and tell me things we should make. I know that this book will be an heirloom and well loved and used for years to come.

After last week's butterscotch excursion I just couldn't seem to let go of that brown sugar depth of flavor - not that I ever do anyway - but as I was making the Tall and Creamy Cheesecake, chosen by Anne of Anne Strawberry I decided I had to play around with the flavor a bit. I knew that this cheesecake recipe was going to be good, but when I served it to our friends on Christmas Day the immediate WOW from all at the table was a nice gift to get.

To play with the flavors of the cheesecake I made the following changes and additions.

First, I made 1 1/2 times the crust amount because I really love a lot of crust. I didn't want to go overboard and double the recipe, but I did want a bit extra that originally called for - that is just preference though.

The major change I made to the recipe was to divide out, at the very beginning, 1/3 cup each of the sugar and cream portions of the cheesecake. I substituted dark brown sugar for that 1/3 cup portion and combined the cream and brown sugar in a small sauce pan and let it boil, then simmer together until nice and golden, thick and syrupy to make a kind of toffee syrup. I set this aside to cool completely before moving on to the rest of the cheesecake. From there, I just followed the regular directions, up until the point of adding in the vanilla, at which point I also drizzled in the toffee syrup. I used sour cream for the remaining portion of cream or sour cream in the recipe.

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I really love the creamy, golden color that the toffee flavor added to this cheesecake. I also made Peabody's toffee sauce and added some pecans to it to spoon over the top of the cheesecake. All I can say was that I think I could drink that toffee sauce for breakfast, lunch and dinner (did I mention I used to just eat straight brown sugar from the bag when I was little? Yeah. It is an obsession).

This cheesecake was by far THE BEST CHEESECAKE we have ever had. Not only the texture, but the flavor and ease of making the recipe, now put this week's Tuesdays with Dorie recipe in the running as my favorite recipe so far. I am still a chocoholic at heart, so the Gooey Chocolate Cake hasn't quite been unseated yet, but this cheesecake comes very close.

Make sure to head on over to see all the other amazing creations put together by my Tuesdays with Dorie friends.

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47 comments:

Engineer Baker said...

Oh wow. Pecan toffee cheesecake - there are no words to describe the awesomeness. Now I totally have to make it again :)

Marthe said...

Toffee Cheesecake.... sounds like a great combo!! Yum....

Cristine said...

What a great combination!!! I loved this cheesecake, too! Yours looks and sounds fantastic!

LyB said...

That is a beauty, Holly! I love the look with the toffee sauce and the pecans, what a show stopper.

chocolatechic said...

It truly is the best cheesecake I have ever tasted.


I love toffee in my cheesecake.

ostwestwind said...

Gread looking cheesecake.

Best wishes for 2009!

Ulrike from K├╝chenlatein

Lady Baker said...

I just found your blog--thanks for posting on mine! Wow--you really went above and beyond the call here--this looks so amazing! The pecan topping..the toffee...it's a work of art for sure! :)

Gretchen Noelle said...

Looks terrific Holly! After the butterscotch, I was considering making a Butterscotch Cheesecake. Just can't get that flavor out of my mind. Great job!

Anne said...

Wow Holly, that looks amazing! As for the brown sugar fixation... my husband still eats it straight out of the bag (seriously!) Hope you have a happy new year!

Peggy said...

Oh I'm LOVING the toffee - I can almost taste it through the blog. YUM. Yours is absolutely beautiful. Happy New Year!

Danielle said...

Toffee my favorite!! your cakes look great!

juju73 said...

Could you please send some through the monitor? *swoon*

What's for Supper? said...

I agree with you about this cookbook. It is amazing and probably the best baking cookbook I have ever seen!

Y said...

Toffee AND pecans! Yum!

steph- whisk/spoon said...

oh toffee sauce-- yum, yum! i agree that this was so delicious!

Erin said...

It's nice to see that other people love the crust as much as I do! The toffee sauce looks great too- it's one of my favorite flavors!

Maria said...

Toffee! Oh my! I am loving your version!

Rachel said...

oh i LOVE toffee--this looks amazing!

rainbowbrown said...

Very nice changes! I used to sneak plain brown sugar myself. I'll have to try the cheesecake your way next time.

cakeflower said...

Oh my gosh...I am so excited you commented on MY blog!!! I have you bookmarked!
Yes, my Twilight obsession...well the books are of course better than the movie..but you MUST go see it soon!
I could eat that sauce right of the computer!

Christine said...

Toffee Cheesecake oh Yum!!!

TeaLady said...

Holly - This looks absolutely DIVINE!!!!

Spike said...

extra crust is always a good idea!

Leslie said...

I love all of your tweaks, especially the toffee and extra crust (I made a little more than the recipe called for but not enough). I would eat almost anything with that toffee on it. Thanks for a blog that is a delightful place to visit and learn.

Jacque said...

Ooooh, I'm all over that toffee/brown sugar combo. Love it! Your cheesecake sounds out of this world... I must try it.

Nice job!

Jess said...

I MUST make this version. It looks and sounds incredible.

Glad you enjoyed your card and cocoa - and hope you have a wonderful 2009.

Pamela said...

Oh. My. Goodness! It looks simply amazing!! I really thought this was a great cheesecake, but yours is really lovely.

Di said...

Yum. I love the pecans on top. I once made a cheesecake with a brown sugar/pecan crust for a co-worker who couldn't have gluten. The flavors are terrific with plain cheesecake. I can just imagine how great they must be with toffee cheesecake. =)

pinkstripes said...

OMG. I am drooling over your cheesecake it sounds (and looks) soooo good.

Happy New Year!

Mary Ann said...

I would like to watch you drink toffee sauce for breakfast! must be good. I really like the fact that you added more crust- great idea. That is my favorite part too!
Your cheesecake is divine!

n.o.e said...

Great version of this wonderful dessert, Holly! I'm making notes. And the chocolate cookies that you link to in the post below - yipes! I don't need any more sweets to bookmark!!
Nancy

Natashya said...

I love toffee, great choice for your beautiful cheesecake!

Peabody said...

It looks fabulous and I am such a toffee girl so that makes it even better.
BTW chocolate lover go see my post this week for Chocolate Mascarpone Cheesecake Pots. Those were pretty killer.

Lynnylu said...

Very creative. I love the toffee and pecan topping.

Jamie said...

This looks amazing!! Wow! Toffee is such a great idea!

Have you written a post with tips for taking better food photos? I am in need of some help in that department! Your pictures are great. What type of camera do you have?

CB said...

Damn girl. Why can't we be neighbors? I really want a piece of that gorgeous pecan toffee cheesecake right about now. drooooling
Clara @ iheartfood4thought

Ari (Baking and Books) said...

Wow, that looks incredible. I want a slice!

Amy said...

Wow, Holly! This really looks amazing - so elegant and rich! Great job! I'm making another one of these for another party tomorrow and I might just have to try your wonderful ideas!

-Amy
www.singforyoursupperblog.com

PheMom said...

Jamie,

You are seriously too sweet! My only tips are to take a lot more pictures than you need, so that you have a better chance of finding some you like when you get to see them on the computer. The natural light in my house stinks, so I have to use Picasa to pretty much always fix the lighting, which helps alot. Other than that I just have a little Canon PowerShot. I think the main things with that are that I use the lighting in the house and like I said, adjust the lighting on the computer with Picasa's little "I'm Feeling Lucky" feature. I also always use the Macro setting and never use the flash on the camera.

For a lot better tips and information, Helen over at Tartlette just recently wrote a great post about taking great pictures. You can find that here.

I hope that helps!

THANK YOU SO MUCH TO EVERYONE FOR YOUR SWEET SUPPORT AND AWESOME COMMENTS! They really, truly mean the world to me!

Happy New Year!

Holly

Melissa said...

I love the idea of doubling the crust - that's my favorite part too. Yours looks delicious!

kim said...

It looks sooo delicious, Holly!! And don't worry, you are not alone in having eaten brown sugar straight from the bag ;)
Happy new year!

The Food Librarian said...

What wonderful additions to the recipe. I can't pick which one I love more - the toffee or the lotsa crust. I love crust too!!

Holly, wishing you and your wonderful family a great new year! - mary the food librarian

chriesi said...

Mmm delicious! Happy New Year!

Madam Chow said...

This sounds fabulous, and I'm with you on this being the best cheesecake I've had (except for my grandmothers cottage cheese cheesecake, which has sentimental value, and fewer calories)!

Nancy said...

Yummmmmm! Your picture of the cheesecake slice with the pecan topping is just so amazing! I don't know what else to say!

Manggy said...

I love it when your recommendations glow! That means it's ridiculously good!! Happy new year Holly!! :)

AmyRuth said...

Just getting in line to say that your creation is amazing. Dorie should take notice. I have a cheesecake that used brown rather than granulated sugar and a carmel sauce drizzle. But yours sound even better with the mixture in the batter. I'll have to give that a try. My youngest likes BS out of the bag as well. : ) Pretty photos too.
Happy 2009
AmyRuth

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