Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Coffee Yogurt Cheesecake with Brownie Base


I was actually reluctant to try this recipe at first because the first step said "Line two 23cm (9") springform pans..." suggesting that this is a big recipe. But when I looked at the filling ingredients, it called for 550g of cream cheese. I usually use 500g of cream cheese for an 8" cake and my brain went into overdrive to compute if I should go ahead and use the recipe as is for just one 8" cake. Besides, I am not exactly crazy about coffee flavored cakes or coffee flavored anything. I like coffee as a drink and that's it.


I don't have a square springform pan and neither have I seen one before. What I have is a square pan with a removable bottom, courtesy of my aunty. The recipe said to line the pan with aluminium foil but I decided to line it with baking paper, keeping my fingers crossed that it would be OK. Then I wrapped the outside of the pan with 2 layers of heavy duty aluminum foil.

The first step was to prepare the brownie batter and I made a slight change to the recipe by cutting down the brown sugar from 150g to 50g. The amount of batter looked like it was enough for only one pan and this was confirmed once I poured it into the pan. There was only a thin layer of batter and it made me wonder how it could be enough for two 23cm pans. My brownie was done in only 15 minutes.

The brownie had a nice springy texture.

Next it was time to prepare the cheesecake filling. In addition to cream cheese, the recipe called for 100g of plain yogurt and 200ml of sour cream. Yikes! Yogurt I have but the sour cream was already used for another cake. I had no choice but to substitute with more yogurt. Another ingredient I did not have was Amaretto liquer. Though it was optional, I substituted it with rum. And instead of cornflour, I used custard powder. As for the eggs, it was two whole eggs and 2 egg yolks. I was reluctant to separate the yolks as I would be left with 2 egg whites. I decided to improvise and use 3 whole eggs instead. Again, I cut down the sugar from 200g to 130g.


Before I poured the filling into the pan, I had a quick taste. Yum! It tasted like very good coffee ice cream. I was optimistic that this cheesecake would turn out well. Even though I don't usually use a water bath for this type of baked cheesecake, I decided to give it a go. The cake was done in about 60 minutes and I let it cool in the oven for 30 minutes. The surface was smooth save for a small patch of air bubbles. 


I cooled and chilled the cake overnight. The next morning I had to rush to slice and photograph the cake before the water supply got cut off. So many things to wash! I cut 16 slices to be given away and saved one for myself. I had to taste it to determine if it was fit to be given away. And indeed it was more than fit, the taste was lovely and went well with the brownie base. I was very happy. It was well worth the effort and I realize now that it is worthwhile to bake a cheesecake in a water bath as it prevents the cake for cracking (I usually experience minor cracks which patch up when the cake cools) and keeps the surface moist.

Yummeh!

I am not reproducing the original recipe as I have made quite a few changes to it. Instead I am giving you my adapted version as it worked very well and is a lot simpler for my future reference. And yes, I have changed my mind about coffee flavored cakes. Now I love it!











Coffee Yogurt Cheesecake with Brownie Base
Recipe source : Adapted from Alan Bakes Really Good Cheesecakes (page 44)

Note :
1. Line an 8" square pan with removable bottom with baking paper or aluminum foil
2. Wrap the outside of the pan with two layers of heavy duty aluminum foil.
3. I baked the brownie base at 160C and the filling at 140C.
4. I made the coffee mixture by dissolving 2 heap teaspoons of instant coffee with 1 cup of hot water. Yes, there are leftovers after using for the brownie base and filling. I drank it.
5. In the recipe below, I make note of sugar in original recipe so that you can decide what amount to use.
6. To garnish the cake, I sprinkled with cocao powder.

Brownie Base 
Ingredients :
- 80g self raising flour
- 2 tbp cocoa powder
- 100g butter
- 50g semi-sweet dark chocolate
- 2 tbsp brewed coffee (see note 3 above)
- 1tsp vanilla extract
- 2 large eggs
- 50g brown sugar (original recipe : 100g)

Method for brownie base :
1. Sift flour and cocoa powder three times and set aside.
2. In a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water, melt butter and chocolate, stirring well to mix.
3. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
4. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing until well incorporated.
5. Add sugar and mix well.
6. Add flour mixture and fold to incorporate.
7. Pour batter into the lined pan and bake for 20-25 minutes at 160C (Mine was done in 15 minutes) or until skewer inserted into the center of the brownie comes out clean.
8. Set aside to cool.

Coffee Cheesecake Filling 
Ingredients :
- 2 tbsp brewed coffee (see note 3 above)
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon sugar
- 500g cream cheese at room temperature 
- 130g castor sugar (original recipe 200g)
- 280ml plain yogurt
- 2 tbsp custard powder
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 tbsp rum (and then some hic!)
- 3 large eggs

Method for cheesecake filling :
1. Add cinnamon sugar to the brewed coffee and stir to dissolve. Set aside.
2. Beat cream cheese and sugar until combined.
3. Add yogurt and mix well.
4. Add vanilla extract and eggs, one at a time, beating well with each addition.
5. Add brewed coffee and custard powder and mix until well blended.
6. Pour the filling over the brownie base.
7. Place the cake pan into a roasting pan. Fill the roasting pan with hot water until it reaches halfway up the side of the cake pan.
8. Bake at 140C for about 1 hour or until the outer edges of the cake is firm and the center is still a little wobbly.
9. Leave the cake to cool in the oven with oven door ajar for 30 minutes and then remove to cool further on cooling rack.
10. Chill the cake in the fridge overnight.
12. Unmould the cake and peel away baking paper.
13. Slice using a hot knife and transfer to serving plate.



This post is linked to Cook-Your-Books #11 hosted by Joyce of Kitchen Flavours.

50 comments:

  1. Wowwwwwww!!!! That looks so so perfect! Wish I could taste a bit. ;)

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    1. Thank you! Not bad, eh? hee..hee....

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  2. Wow, you are so clever la.. I see you modified the recipe and substituted with other ingredients to make do with what you have.. And you reduced the sugar too, good!
    I thought you are going to write you digged in with a spoon, haha.. But the cake is big, can be cut into 16 slices, not bad.. All for colleagues? Only save 1 for yourself (to be tested before giving away), cukup mou?
    But I know you, if left only 1 piece, you wallop it, then ok, finish story, no more.. If there is still more, you cannot sit still and wana finish it up right.. Teehee..
    I love all your cheesecakes, woman.. Any cheesecakes from you, I know it’s good already, even your serai ones.. Wah, somemore this one with brownie base, lagi kelas, babe! Normally people just do crushed biscuits with melted butter..
    Haha, you always incorporate the “no water” or the water ration thingy in your post, so cute la.. But really, you are crazy you know, no water somemore got mood wana bake.. Me ahh, I will brood one whole month leh.. hehehe..

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    1. Thank you for the compliments leh! I feel so terangkat you know. All the rest of the cheesecakes given away to family members. I eat only one because if I keep more, they won't last very long. All will go into my stomach. So far so good with the water thingy. Have to adapt and hoping that this crisis will end soon.

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  3. You made the cheesecake so beautiful. This is absolutely wonderful with coffee flavour as I love coffee alot.

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    1. Thank you, Mel! The coffee flavour with the added rum was really good.

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  4. wah, SEDAP lah.. i love the brownie base to go with the cheesecake.. and the cheesecake looks so rich and creamy, though i am not a coffee fan, i like that little hint of coffee bean fragrant in the cakes.. the photos also make the cheesecake look more yummy, love the mint you used to decorate, aiyoh, so professional lah~~ :)

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    1. Thank you, SK! This is the first time that I used a base other than digestive biscuits. For me this is considered quite adventurous as I tend to stick to the same old things. Good thing I have mint in the garden. Very convenient when want to do decoration.

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  5. This is the cheesecake for me! I love everything coffee :) Your cake looks beautiful, very smooth texture and even top!

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    1. Thank you for the compliments! hee..hee...I am so happy!

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  6. Hi Phong Hong,

    I think you should write a book called Phong Hong Bakes Really Good Cheesecakes (and also roasted chicken and Nutella cakes!)

    I think this recipe can bake 2 cakes because it is going to bake 2 thin cakes but I like your version more. Like I said, butter cake must have butter... Likewise, cheesecake must have enough cream cheese :p

    Thanks for your sweet comment in my Lor chicken post. Nice that our grandmothers live forever in our hearts.

    Zoe

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    1. Zoe, your comment made me smile and laugh! I always like thick slices of cakes and not the dainty thin ones. I have to eat something substantial and I am glad the cake turned out fine. I will be baking more cheesecakes so that my investment in that cookbook is well worth it!

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  7. I'm glad you changed your mind! I always know where to go for a good cheesecake recipe. This turned out gorgeous!

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    1. Thank you, Cathleen! Glad to share and I know cheesecakes are ever so popular :)

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  8. The texture does look fantastic, very smooth and must be balanced well with the chocolate brownie base. A really good looking bake I have to say!

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    1. Thank you, Yen! It was well worth the effort and anxiety. Will be more adventurous in my future cheesecake bakes!

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  9. Hi, what a cleaver lady you are. I like your version and the cake looks so beautiful and smooth on top. Can I have a slice of your cake and a cup of coffee? Thanks for sharing.

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    1. Thank you, Veronica! Of course you may have a slice or even two :) I am really happy I baked this cheesecake.

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  10. Taste like coffee ice cream? That sounds delish!! It's always a delight reading your post... U r so humourous (hic)

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    1. hah...hah...thanks, Victoria! The batter was like good melted coffee ice-cream. I could have licked the mixing bowl clean LOL!

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  11. Yum yum yum, it's 11pm here now & after seeing your yoghurt cheesecake, mana boleh tidur leh, hehehe. I'm kind of opposite, I don't drink coffee(well, except for iced coffee) but love any dessert with coffee flavour. The cake looks so silky smooth leh!

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    1. Hi Jessie! You know I love cheesecakes a lot. I have a few cookbooks on cheesecakes and I must try them out so that the money spent on the books are worth it!

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  12. sometimes creativity is a good thing, even when baking cakes:)
    it does look very very deilicious!

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    1. Thank you, Ola! It was a good thing that the cake turned out alright even though I did not follow the recipe exactly.

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  13. How do you cut the squares so neatly? They look lovely!

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    1. Hi Wok and Spoon! I cut the cheesecake using a hot knife. Just dip the knife in hot water, wipe dry and slice. Repeat after every cut and that's how to get neat slices :)

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  14. I notice you like to bake cheesecakes, I think this cake looks really well baked too! Very smooth top and the cut slices so clean! Sinful cake, great idea to give most away if not ended up in own stomach lol!

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    1. Jeannie, you are right! I love to bake cheesecakes because they sound complicated but they are actually easier to bake than other cakes. And I love cheesecakes a lot!

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  15. Phong Hong, I'm so glad that I checked your latest post...because, I have never, ever seen a cheesecake recipe like that...bookmarked it right away; I am salivating over your yummylicious cheesecake with the coffee, and for sure I would also not leave the rum out...lol...so funny with your remark about the rum...(I would also have a little shot of rum with the addition to the cake)
    I don't have a square baking pan with a removable bottom, but if adding parchment paper with sides of paper longer, then you could easily remove it from the pan...and BTW...the broweny bottom is what really makes it to 'die for' amazing!
    Hugs, and thanks to you my dear friend

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    1. Hi Elisabeth! This is my first time baking a cheesecake using anything other than the usual biscuit base. It takes a bit more time but entirely worth it. I hope that you try it because I know you will love the taste ans texture of this cheesecake!

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  16. what a nice coffee cheesecake, your cutting looks so neat!

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    1. Thank you, Jozelyn! The secret is to use a hot knife :)

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  17. Phong Hong I coming from Joyce blog and I love this coffe yogurt cheescake look delicious dear!

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    1. Thank you, Gloria! Glad you love the cheesecake :)

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  18. mmmm so yummy looking leh....i love coffee.....but not cheese :p

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    1. Oh...you don't like cheesecake kah? Sayang....

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  19. Cheesecake and brownie! What a perfect combination!

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  20. Hi Phong Hong, wow this recipe serves all our favourites: me coffee, son cheesecake n girl brownie. Will try your perfect combination. Thanks for sharing.

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    1. Hi Karen! Then it is perfect for the whole family :)

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  21. Oh look so tempting, give me a slice now! Kam Siah!

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  22. ohh tidakkkk...mengancam sungguh bahagian atasnya tu...boleh kasi 2 potong ..mmkoi :)

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    1. hee...hee....batal lah diet kita kan?

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  23. Hi Phong Hong,
    You are amazing! A true baker! Only a true baker would make a recipe their own! Love all the changes you've made. And yup, I would cut down on the sugar too.
    You sure love your cheesecakes! And doughnuts! Hahahaha!
    I have this book too, but have not tried anything from it yet.

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    1. Oh, Joyce! You are making me blush! I am still a bumbling baker and I still have a long way to go. Yup, love my cheesecake and dougnuts. That will never change hah..hah...In keeping with the Cook Your Books spirit, I am sure you'll try something from the book :)

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  24. Hi Phong Hong,
    Your really love your cheesecakes!! I love yours too..lol
    Love how you make a twist to your cheesecake. It trurn out great!!
    Can I have a piece please :p

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    1. Thank you, mui mui! Of course, please help yourself to a piece :)

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  25. OH Wow! This is my dream cheesecake mann ! Coffee , brownie & cheesecake all in one ! Satu keping mana cukup weii, I think I can makan the whole cheesecake all by myself ! LOL Love the smooth texture of this yummy cheesecake § YUM ;)

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    1. Hi Kit! Half for you and half for me...hee...hee.....

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