Or, how I learned the easiest way to please a room full of women :-p
In my first year of parenting in 1 Player mode, I spent a lot of time learning how to cook (see my “1 Player Chef” post). At the start of 2014, I decided that my next culinary challenge was learning how to bake. Unfortunately, this challenge had a few flaws:
- As my metabolism is not what it used to be in my younger years, I try not too eat too much baking/sweet things (chocolate being the exception), and with most recipes being for a batch of muffins or a whole cake, I didn’t want to have that sort of temptation around me.
- Due to my drive for efficiency, I didn’t see the wisdom in spending an hour or two baking something which wasn’t going to contribute to my daily meals.
- My oven is a temperamental device at the best of times, so I was reluctant to try and bake anything in it and risk a kitchen disaster.
So my quest to learn how to bake seemed doomed from the beginning, until I happened across a post on Imgur.com containing recipes for an assortment of decadent cheesecakes.
I absolutely love homemade cheesecakes – my mum didn’t make them that often (she was more of the cake/muffin/biscuit persuasion), but when she did, I loved the creamy awesomeness combined with the crunchy biscuity base that was made from gingernuts, superwines, digestives or some other classic biscuit.
I scanned the recipes in the Imgur post and came across one for a Peanut Butter Cheesecake that required no baking. This was exactly what I needed: a recipe for “baking” that required no baking!
I gave the recipe a whirl, and it couldn’t have been simpler. It took about 25 minutes to make, only involved a handful of ingredients, and was dead easy – and dangerously delicious. Seriously, combining chocolate, cheesecake and peanut butter is so good, that even the most hardcore Paleo warriors would have trouble resisting such an indulgence.
So after it passed my daughter’s taste test with flying colours, I had to get the rest of the cheesecake out of the house before I faceplanted onto it to cram it in every hole in my face. I took the rest to work, where the predominantly female office team were treated to a special cheesecake afternoon tea.
Now, I don’t mean to brag about my cheesecake-making prowess, but the collective sounds of delight that came from the kitchen that day were definitely NSFW. Needless to say, the unanimous opinion of the peanut butter cheesecake was that it was pretty damn good. And so I pass this on to you, in the hope that you will use this recipe only for the forces of good, because as Spiderman’s uncle famously said, with great power comes great responsibility.
- 250-ish grams of Oreos – about two packets (depending on the size)
- 100 grams of butter (to melt)
- 300ml cream (or heavy cream)
- 1.5 cups icing sugar
- 1 cup chunky peanut butter (any peanut butter will do, but I try to spend a few extra bucks to get some of the good quality stuff)
- 250gm cream cheese, room temperature (or use easy-spread version)
- Roasted peanuts (optional) and a chocolate bar (not optional) to garnish
- Turn the Oreos into rough crumbs by using a blender (I use a stick blender with a container-like attachment), or you can put them in a ziplock bag and crush them with a rolling pin/other suitable kitchen implement/your forehead.
- Mix the Oreo crumbs with the melted butter in a bowl to create a sticky biscuit mixture, then press the mixture into the base of a greased 22cm springform pan.
- Pour the cream into a large bowl and beat until stiff peaks form (don’t over-beat the cream!).
- Beat in the icing sugar, half a cup at a time until mixed in.
- Add the peanut butter to the sugar cream mix and beat until mixed
- Add the cream cheese, and beat until mixed.
- Pour cheesecake mix onto the biscuit base, and smooth out with a spatula or the back of a spoon.
- To garnish, use a vegetable peeler and shave chocolate pieces from your chocolate bar onto the cheesecake (I use a Peanut Slab – you could also use a Flake bar and crush it up for an even easier garnish!) Finally, add the roasted peanuts if you’re using them.
- Refrigerate for at least three hours before serving (I usually leave it overnight). Then proceed to shove in your (cheese)cake-hole and experience a love like never before.
Tips and tricks
- This is a no-bake cheesecake, so if you leave it out of the fridge it will start to get soft and melt. Store it in the fridge, and put it back in once you’re done serving it.
- The amount of Oreos you need for the base will depend on the size of your pan – so if it’s bigger than 22cm, you’ll need more biscuits. It’s safest to get an extra packet if you’re not sure, because running out of biscuits for your base will require you to substitute other biscuits if you have them round (which I’ve had to do a couple of times), or go back to the shop to get more (which I’ve also had to do), which is no fun when you’re in the middle of making the cheesecake.
- You can cut down the amount of icing sugar to 1 cup if you want.