I love cheesecake immensely, so was super pleased when my lovely pal Sara* alerted me to the fact that this was the next Domestic Sluttery Pudding Club theme. I haven't been baking quite as much recently so I missed out on last month's chocolate theme but can't wait to join in with Pudding Club now cos frankly, the Domestic Sluts are pure awesome.
I'd actually just made a chocolate cherry cheesecake for the latest Edinburgh Cake Ladies meet up, a very light no-bake version. Something very interesting happened when I made this cheesecake though - my boyfriend, a confirmed cheesecake hater, not only tried a piece but enjoyed it! I'd made it in a loaf tin so perhaps it was the shape that bamboozled him but he hadn't realised it was cheesecake at first and was near horrified himself to learn that he'd enjoyed this unholy marriage of both cheese and cake (his main objection to cheesecake being, much like a Peter Kay sketch, that cheese and cake should have nothing to do with each other).
So I thought I'd challenge myself to make something that he'd really enjoy. This recipe from Marian Keyes' Saved By Cake caught my eye, mainly because it's made in a loaf tin and Snickers are my boyfriend's favourite chocolate bar. I hate the fact it's called Blokey Snickers Cheesecake Loaf, apparently because Snickers are "blokey". It reminds me a little bit too much of Yorkie Bars not being for girls, Bic pens - For Her and the forthcoming "diet friendly" Crispello's which are marketed towards women. But never mind, I enjoyed it plenty and still have all my lady bits intact so all is well. More importantly, my boyfriend loved it so mission accomplished! This cheesecake is good enough to turn the cheesecake-suspicious into a cheesecake convert.
This is a baked cheesecake, with mascarpone, ricotta cheese and sour cream, which overcomes the sweetness of the Snickers but does mean it's on the rich side. The base is a basic digestive crust but with salted peanuts added too and four snickers are cut up and mixed into the cheesecake batter. I've adapted the recipe ever so slightly as the topping should be toffee sauce from a squeezy bottle - instead, I swirled some extra caramel sauce into the batter and added a chocolate ganache topping (just to make it more Snickers-y) but this is far from an essential step - I just love chocolate. I also tweaked the base ever so slightly as the mix felt a bit too moist. This cheesecake is best enjoyed with feminist gusto.
* As a side note, I was thinking about how long Sara and I have been friends and it's probably close to ten years of mutually appreciating indiepop, glitter and cats. Blimey! I could probably track this via the HDIF photo pages however this would just make me feel really old.
Snickers Cheesecake Loaf
(slightly adapted from Marian Keyes Saved By Cake)
For the base
180g milk chocolate digestive biscuits
50g salted peanuts
For the filling
250g mascarpone cheese
250g ricotta cheese
100g caster sugar
200ml sour cream
4 Snickers bars, chopped into chunks
Optional: Caramel sauce from a jar (I used Waitrose Caramel dipping sauce)
For the chocolate ganache topping
(Note: this is optional - Marian Keyes recipe has the loaf topped with squeezy toffee sauce out of a bottle)
100ml double cream
150g dark or milk chocolate, depending on your preference
A generous handful of salted peanuts
1. Preheat the oven to 170ºC. Line a 1kg loaf tin with baking paper hanging over the sides.
2. In a food processor, whizz the biscuits and peanuts so they form a rough-cut, rustic-looking mix; you should still be able to see parts of the peanuts.
3. Melt the butter and stir it through the crumbs. Pour the mix into the bottom of the loaf tin and pack down hard, using the base of a glass. Bake for 15 minutes, remove from the oven and cool, then refrigerate until needed.
4. To make the filling, preheat the oven again to 170ºC. Mix the two cheeses together, then add the sugar and eggs. Pour in the sour cream, then stir in the Snickers pieces and caramel sauce. Pour in on top of the biscuit base.
5. Bake for an hour and a half, then turn off the oven and leave it sitting there for as long as you can bear. When you eventually take it out, you’ll be delighted to see the top has developed a gorgeous fudgey look. Refrigerate overnight.
6. To make the chocolate ganache, place the cream in a small saucepan on medium heat until it just comes to the boil. Place the chocolate in a mixing bowl and pour the hot cream over, leaving for a few minutes to let the chocolate melt. Whisk mixture together until smooth and then smooth layer over the top of the cheesecake allowing some bits of chocolate to dribble over the side. Scatter peanuts over the top and enjoy!