February 27, 2015

U

unfinished… is for “unfinished”

It also stands for “unable to comprehend” why a beautiful project unfortunately stops after it’s begun.

gma'sgingersBy God’s grace, we go on…

teddyThank you, little one, for the joyful smiles you gave us to remember.

February 19, 2015

Black Bottom Tiramisu Cheesecake

The Improv Cooking Challenge February installment features Coffee & Cream. ElisabethJean cof'n'cream (1)When our hostess Lesa publicized this month’s ingredients, I was so sure I was going to make one of those panna cotta thingies topped with a coffee gelée like I’ve been seeing all over Pinterest. Unfortunately, however, my fellas are not pudding-y/custard-y type eaters, so I needed to punch it up a bit. I was so glad I came across this recipe by Theresa of Island Vittles for a tiramisu cheesecake with an espresso glaze.

My absolute favorite sweet when I was in school was Black Bottom Pie. The next decade I loved me some cheesecake! Most recently I’ve enjoyed making liqueur-soaked cookie/cake-based desserts. Today I’ve combined all the above into one 9-inch springform pan!ElisabethJean cof'n'cream (14)First I made my mascarpone with 4 cups of cream & lemon juice as I did here. ElisabethJean cof'n'cream (4)While that was cooling, I used my #blendtec Christmas gift to make the coffee extract for the espresso gelée. ElisabethJean cof'n'cream (2)(Today it was 1/2 c. espresso powder with 12 oz.  rum. That yielded a little over 6 ounces of extract.)

For the “black bottom” part of the dessert I decided to go with a flourless chocolate cake recipe in part to keep the dish gluten free.

  • 1/2 c. butter
  • 1 c. semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 t. kosher salt
  • 2 t. espresso powder
  • 2/3 c. brown sugar
  • 1/3 c. dutch dark cocoa
  • 3 large eggs

Preheat oven to 375° and prepare springform with parchment. Melt butter & chocolate chips. (It took 90 seconds in the microwave.) Whisk in the salt, espresso, brown sugar & cocoa until smooth. Add eggs one at a time, whisking well after each. Scrape into prepared pan and bake 20 minutes. Remove pan to cooling rack and re-set oven to 200° (might need to leave oven door open for a bit to help it cool down…)ElisabethJean cof'n'cream (6)

  • 1 lb. mascarpone
  • 1 lb. cream cheese
  • 1 c. sugar
  • 1/2 c. dark rum
  • 1/4 c. cornstarch
  • 1/2 t. kosher salt
  • 4 large eggs

In mixing bowl combine mascarpone, cream cheese and sugar on low speed until well blended. I used the whisk attachment to add the remaining ingredients except for the eggs. I then ran the mixer on medium speed to add the eggs, one at a time, and continued to whisk until the batter was creamy & smooth. Gently pour over the chocolate bottom. Return pan to oven and bake until firm. (It can take 3 hours, or so…) Cool on rack. When no longer warm, cover and chill in refrigerator overnight.ElisabethJean cof'n'cream (7)

  • 1 T. cold water
  • 1 t. gelatin
  • 2 T. light brown sugar
  • 1/2 c. boiling water
  • 1/2 c. espresso extract

Sprinkle gelatin over cold water in heat-safe bowl. Allow to “bloom” for about 5 minutes. Stir in brown sugar. Add boiling water and stir until brown sugar & gelatin are completely dissolved. Add the espresso extract and allow to cool 15 minutes. Gently pour gelée over cheesecake. Chill until set. Remove ring from pan and serve as desired.

ElisabethJean cof'n'cream (3)I decided to whisk up a little brown sugar whipped cream to top it all off.ElisabethJean cof'n'cream (13)It was the yummiest!ElisabethJean cof'n'cream (17)

Follow these links for some more coffee & cream inspiration: