Friday, 29 July 2011

White Chocolate, Marshmallow and Nutella Cheesecake

This was a special cheesecake for a special person. I love cheesecake altough it is one of those things which you have to have in moderation otherwise you will definitely end up feeling sick. But good cheesecake is one that is creamy, smooth and just melts in your mouth. I have to say that once had the 'perfect' cheesecake when I went to Dublin, Ireland, at a pretty little cafe called 'Stage Door' tucked away in a small corner in the heart of the city. If I remember correctly the flavours that I tried were honey and almond and toffee cheesecake. I am not sure what cheese they used to get the thick and oozy texture but they were absolutely divine mainly due to the perfection of the consistency.

When I went to America I fell in love with 'The Cheesecake Factory'- I never actually tried anything savoury there as I just went straight for the cheesecake; you can't blame me. I don't know why we don't have a chain like this in the UK, but if we did I know for a fact that I would probably have to buy a new wardrobe 2 sizes bigger. I was just amazed at the vast array of different flavours of cheesecake on offer, tempting as they may be I went for the classic 'fresh strawberry cheesecake'. I figured that the only way to tell if it is good cheesecake is to get the simplest flavour first and if they do a good job of that the rest must but pretty good too; I guess this applies to a lot of other foods in general. It was ok, not as amazing as the ones I had in Ireland but what you would expect a normal cheesecake to be like. May I also add that I couldn't actually finish a normal 'Cheesecake Factory' portion size as it was gigantic! Better for sharing I think.

The Cheesecake Factory inspired me to think outside the box, you don't just have to have plain old cheesecake, you can play with the flavours and that in itself leaves endless combinations. It was my friend's birthday and I wanted to make something containing things she liked. So I guess I ended up attempting to put everything into one cheesecake. I knew what I wanted it to be like in my head and I just had to fill in the gaps like how I would decorate it and the actual quantities for everything in the recipe. I ended up experimenting in the end and crossing my fingers that the mixture would set, and luckily it did, and as a bonus it tasted pretty good too, all the flavours worked very well together and I can't imagine the cheesecake without any one of them. All in all a success. I love 'Expat Gourmet's' take on white chocolate cheesecake. I think that anything with white chocolate is always going to be a winner.
I wanted to try making a caramelised sugar mesh ball. I knew what I was trying to create, however I have to admit iit took me more than 10 attempts to get it right as there are soo many factors which need to be just perfect. This is only for added decoration really and it was filled with chocolate Aero balls as that is another thing that my friend loves. I wanted this to be a special cheesecake so I wanted to make it look 'pretty', so only attempt it if you have patience and perseverance. But you never know, you may be a natural at sugar craft.

I even had some biscuit base left over so I decided to make a mini cheesecake too with only half a sugar mesh filled with marshmallows this time.


 300g digestive biscuits
150g butter
150g white chocolate
25g white chocolate  and milk chocolate for decorating
284ml (1 carton) double/whipping cream
400g soft cream cheese
75g nutella
2tsp vanilla extract
100g marshmallows plus extras for decorating
100ml milk
14g sachet of gelatine powder or 4 gelatine leaves (enough to set 1 pint)

Caramelised Maze Ball:
50g caster sugar
1 tbsp water
a container of cold water that would fit a saucepan
an oiled ladle (preferably metal as plastic would probably melt)
A small packet of chocolate Aero balls (or whatever you fancy)


Cheesecake Biscuit Base
1.Crush the biscuits in a bag till you create fine crumbs- I used a pestle for this, although you can use using blender too.
2. Melt the butter in a pan.
3. Add the biscuit crumbs to the butter and stir together.
4. Line the bottom of a cake tin (one with a removable bottom) with the biscuit and butter mixture. make sure you press down firmly using your fingers or the back of a spoon to make it compact.
5. Chill the base in the fridge for at least 30min so that it can cool down and harden.

Cheesecake Filling

1. Make a double boiler by placing a bowl within a larger pan filled with water. Heat and melt the white chocolate, making sure that no water gets into the bowl containing chocolate.
2. Heat the milk in the pan along with the marshmallows. Melt the marshmallows into the milk.
3. Prepare the gelatine so that it sets 1 pint of liquid (I used 14g of powdered gelatine mixed into 120ml of boiling water)
3. Whisk the double cream so that it forms soft peaks.
4. Fold in the soft cheese and the vanilla essence.
5. Fold in the white chocolate and also the milk and marshmallow mixture into the cheese mixture
6.Add the gelatine solution and whisk the mixture for around 2 minutes. Everything must be well combined.

This is how the mixture looks, it is meant to be quite runny:

7. Melt the Nutella in the microwave. Spread a thin layer over the biscuit base.
8. Add a few marshmallows to the base if you would like to.
9. Pour the prepared white chocolate and soft cheese mixture over the base.
10. Refrigerate overnight for at least 12 hrs.

Decorating: Chocolate Weave

Only decorate once the cheesecake has set and is no longer runny.

1. Melt white chocolate and plain chocolate (can use a microwave, be careful not to burn the chocolate).
2. Using a piping bag draw a grid of plan chocolate and then overlay it with a grid of white chocolate.
3. Cool in the fridge.

Decorating: Caramelised Maze Ball:

This requires a lot of precision.

1. Add the sugar and water to a saucepan, stir till they are combined.
2. Bring the mixture to a boil. Don't stir.
3. You should see the mixture slowly becoming yellow and darker. Once it turns a caramel colour immediately take the pan off the heat and dip the base into another container with cold water for 5 seconds to cool it and stop it caramelising/burning further.

4. Once it reaches a syrupy consistency pour it onto the back of the oiled ladle making a grid pattern, then drawing a rim too.
5. If the caramel hardens just place it back on the heat for a few seconds (literally like 5-10 seconds) to melt it again, remember you don't want to burn it.
6. You have to work quickly as you draw the grid as the caramel will harden quickly making it more difficult to get of the ladle. Once you finished slowly and carefully ease the caramel cage of the ladle. I had sooo many failures at this point as I found that if left for too long the caramel will harden and it will break whilst  you try to remove it. So preferably remover it whilst it is still a little malleable.
7. Leave to cool.
8. Make another one. Fill one half of the ball with whatever you want or nothing at all. Then simply place the other half of the maze on top; no 'glue' needed, it should stay in place just enough to look good.

1. The longer you leave the caramel maze lying around the more moisture they absorb and the more sticky they get. So you can't make them way in advance.
2. A tip with cleaning out the saucepan with hardened caramel is to pour boiling water into it so that it melts the caramel rather than trying to scrape away at it. 

A post from FullestofLife


  1. good God you must have a steady hand! The lattice looks amazing... and the ball is too awesome for words!

  2. Interesting, so you use a gelatin mixture into your filling and boil it rather than baking. I am still new at making cheesecakes.