Sunday, December 26, 2010

Gingerbread Cheesecake

I try to make interesting desserts during the holidays. This year I was torn between making cranberry-upside down cake, cranberry swirl cheesecake, French chocolate bread with honey and spices, and gingerbread cheesecake. After taking a poll, I decided to make gingerbread cheesecake, a dessert that sounded fun to bake. Boy, was a wrong! It was an overly-complicated, extremely time-consuming Martha Stewart recipe. Most of my frustration concerned the gingerbread crust. Conventional cheesecakes have a Graham cracker crust, but this Christmas cheesecake called for a gingerbread crust. I thought this was a novel idea (it made the finished cake super special). In order to make the crust, however, fresh gingerbread dough had to be prepared and baked. This was extra work, and Martha's gingerbread recipe seemed very strange. I have made gingerbread cookies with my sister for the past two years, and the process is rather simple (dough is prepared, refrigerated, rolled, cut, and baked). Martha's recipe was unlike any that I have ever seen. Her recipe required the dough to be prepared, refrigerated, rolled, frozen for 15 minutes, cut, frozen for another 15 minutes, and baked. Her cheesecake even called for a water bath, which I have never prepared for a cheesecake. I later asked some of my family members (those who have experience baking) what they thought of the recipe. It was agreed that the gingerbread recipe was odd, but the water bath was not totally unheard of for a cheesecake recipe.

The entire gingerbread cheesecake recipe was composed of way too many steps. I would have chosen a time-consuming gourmet recipe I wanted one. Despite the lack of love that was put into the cheesecake's making, the end product was delicious! The cheesecake had an unconventional gingerbread crust, no superficial cracks (thanks to the water bath), an unbelievably creamy consistency, and a spicy gingerbread-type taste. The cheesecake was a huge hit with family! I would not bake this cake again, but I definitely would eat it again!

To any bakers interested in taking on the challenge, the link for Martha Stewart's Gingerbread Cheesecake Recipe is below:

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