I had the privilege of being a celebrity judge on Monday at the Jewish Home at Rockleigh’s for its first Shavuot Cheese Cake Bakeoff. Four cakes were prepared on site in the competition by amazing volunteers. For preparation, and noting time restraints, JHR’s culinary staff also prepared the recipes and had the cakes ready for the judging panel to sample.
Look in this week’s Jewish Standard’s Keeping Kosher section for the cherry cheese cake recipe.
Below is a fabulous, delicious recipe that Lisa Mactas prepared using her mother’s recipe. Ms. Mactas is a JHR board member and incoming vice president.
Preheat oven to 350
1 box chocolate wafers (9 ounces)
12 ounce bag semi sweet chocolate morsels
6 tablespoons melted butter
(3) 8 ounce packages Philadelphia Cream Cheese
1 cup sour cream
1 cup + 2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/8 teaspoon of salt
Before preparing the crust, unwrap the packages of cream cheese and allow them to soften.
Crush chocolate wafers into powder in Cuisinart or Vitamix (do it in batches) Transfer crushed wafers to mixing bowl and add 2 tablespoons of sugar and mix very well. Add 6 tablespoons of melted butter to wafer and sugar mixture and blend very well. Pour mixture into 9″ springform pan and press firmly against bottom and sides with a fork.
Melt chocolate morsels in the top of the double boiler. To prepare filling, use mixer to blend 3 eggs and 1 cup of sugar until light and frothy. Slice packages of cream cheese. Divide each package into 6 even chunks and add to batter to mixer bowl. Add one package at a time and blend thoroughly. Add melted chocolate morsels from to mixture and blend. Add 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract and blend a little. Add 1/8 teaspoon of salt and blend. Add one cup of sour cream and blend thoroughly. Add container of water to oven while baking for moistness. Place cheese cake on center rack. Pour mixture into refrigerated crust (steps 2-6) and bake for 45-50 minutes in 350 degree oven or until hairline cracks form. Center will jiggle but outer edges will remain firm. Observe cheesecake after 45 minutes of baking. Once hairline cracks begin to form about 1 inch from the edge, remove from oven and place on wire rack to cool. Cover with saran wrap after 2 hours of cooling on wire rack. Refrigerate overnight. Use spatula to free edges of crust from side of springform pan. Open pan and use spatula to loosen the bottom from the pan. Carefully move onto serving plate.