Friday, November 4, 2011

Chocolate Orange Cheesecake

I'm back!

Did you miss me?

Did you even know I was gone?

Well, the family and I had the amazing opportunity to spend the summer in Vienna directing the BYU study abroad. While I had a wonderful time full of exciting experiences and fantastic food, it's taken me until now before I felt I was caught up enough with my real life that I could post anything on this blog. 

This was taken at Demel's Cafe, the imperial bakery. Liam and Tomas are enjoying a typical Viennese dessert called "Mohr im Hemd" which a steamed chocolate cake with chocolate sauce and whipped cream. When life slows down a bit, I plan to learn how to make some of the out-of-this-world desserts we had in Austria. And of course, I'll share them here.

Since returning, I have done some baking though. I've kept up the tradition of bringing something into the office when one of the students has a birthday. I don't know what it is, but there's always a cluster of birthdays around October and November, my busiest time of year at work.

First off, we had Erika. Good thing for Facebook. I would have probably missed her birthday all together. It was late at night, and I needed something quick and easy, yet still have that "wow" factor. I thought back to the days when Katie and I were newlyweds, and we went through a cheesecake phase. We were so into it, I think we made one a week. I hadn't made a cheesecake for a long time, and I immediately thought of this chocolate orange cheesecake, one of our favorites. After a quick run to the store for some cream cheese (Which, by the way, you can't do in Austria because the grocery stores close early.), I was ready to start. By the time David Letterman came on, it was in the oven.

The cheesecake, as always, was a hit. Everyone thought it was a lot more work than it really was. If you've never tried making a cheesecake before, this is a good one to start with.

Happy birthday, Erika!
*My mom just informed me I posted this recipe before. Rats! Oh well. I'll just have make another one of our favorite cheesecakes and post it to make up for the goof.

Chocolate Orange Cheesecake

  • 1 cup chocolate wafer crumbs
  • ¼ tsp. cinnamon
  • 3 Tbsps. butter, melted
  • 4 8-oz. packages cream cheese, softened
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • ½ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted
  • 2 tsp. orange extract
  • ½ tsp. grated orange peel
Combine crumbs, cinnamon, and melted butter. Press onto bottom of a 9-in. springform pan. Bake at 325° for 10 min.

Combine cream cheese and sugar, mixing at medium speed until well blended. Add eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Blend in sour cream and vanilla. Blend chocolate into 3 cups batter. Blend orange extract and peel into remaining batter. Pour chocolate batter over crust. Bake at 350° for 30 min. Reduce oven temperature to 325°. Spoon remaining batter over chocolate layer and continue baking 30 min. Loosen cake from rim of pan and cool before removing rim of pan. Chill for several hours.

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