Chocolate Banana Cheesecake #CheesecakeoftheYear

Chocolate Banana Cheesecake #CheeseCake

Taking a brief glance at the food section of Celeb Baby Laundry, you will see that I love food and indulging in desserts. There is no coincidence that the majority of the recipes are desserts! Till now, I have not featured any cheesecakes which is surprising, considering I love cheesecake. I love all the varieties of cheesecakes. From the no bake to the traditional NY style I’m a happy foodie as long as I’m having a good piece of cheesecake.

What really makes a good cheesecake is a good cream cheese. After all, it is the most important ingredient in a ‘CHEESEcake’. My go-to cream cheese is Philadelphia Brick Cream Cheese. It’s a perfect ingredient to this Chocolate Banana Cheesecake that is sure to make your taste buds come alive. 

Chocolate Banana Cheesecake

Ingredients 

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1 1/2 cup finely crushed graham cracker crumbs
1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 cup melted butter
4 ounces dark or bittersweet chocolate (not chips)
5 tablespoons cream
1 tablespoon dark cocoa powder
1 teaspoon vanilla
4 8-ounce blocks (2 pounds) of Philadelphia Cream Cheese, at room temperature
1 1/4 cup sugar
1/8 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup sour cream
4 eggs, at room temperature
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup mashed banana
A few drops of yellow food coloring (optional)
1/4 teaspoon banana flavoring (optional)

Instructions

1. Heat oven to 350 F.

2. In a small bowl, combine graham cracker crumbs, sugar, and melted butter. Stir thoroughly.

3. Lightly grease the bottom of a 9 1/2 –inch springform pan. Press graham cracker mixture firmly and evenly onto the bottom all the way to the edges.

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4. Bake for 7-8 minutes. Cool completely on wire rack. Lightly butter the inside edge of the cake pan, being careful not to touch the crust.

5. Turn the oven up to 500 F.

6. Finely chop the chocolate and place it in a small bowl.

7. In a small saucepan, heat the cream until it begins to boil. Immediately pour over the chopped chocolate and let it sit for one minute. Stir gently until all of the chocolate is melted and the mixture is smooth. Stir in dark cocoa powder and vanilla and set aside.

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8. In a large bowl with an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese on medium low speed until soft and fluffy, scraping the bowl often. Add the sugar and beat thoroughly – at least 2 minutes.

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9. Add the flour and sour cream and beat until combined.

10. With the mixer set to low, add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well between each addition. Stop mixing after the last egg is incorporated. Overbeating can cause cracks in the surface of your cheesecake.

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11. Remove 2 cups of batter and place it in a small bowl. Gently fold in the chocolate mixture and spread evenly in the pan, covering the graham cracker crust completely.

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12. Combine the lemon juice and mashed banana (add the food coloring and flavoring if you’re using it) and fold into the remaining batter. Pour over the chocolate mixture in the pan, spreading with a rubber spatula or the back of a spoon, being careful to keep the two layers from mixing together.

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13. Place the springform pan on a baking sheet and place in the center rack of the oven.

14. Bake for 10 minutes. Without opening the oven door, turn the heat down to 200 F. Bake for approximately one hour. (At this point, the center will be a little wobbly and the outside edge will appear firm.) Turn the oven off and open the oven door slightly. Let the cheesecake cool down slowly in the oven for 1 hour.

15. Place the cheesecake on a wire rack. Run a thin knife around the edge of the cake to loosen it, but don’t remove the pan sides. (This will help prevent cracking as it cools.) Cool completely.

16. Make ganache (recipe below). Cut 2-inch wide strips of parchment and slide them between the cake and the sides of the pan. Spread the top of the cheesecake with ganache, bringing it right up to the parchment. Cover lightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 4-5 hours; overnight is best.

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17. Release the sides of the springform pan, run a long knife between the bottom of the pan and the cake to release it, and slide onto a serving plate.

18. Decorate with whipped cream and slices of banana.

Chocolate Ganache Ingredients
4 ounces good quality dark chocolate
6 tablespoons heavy cream

1. Finely chop the chocolate and place it in a small bowl.

2. In a small saucepan, heat the cream until it begins to boil. Immediately pour over the chopped chocolate and let it sit for 1 minute. Stir gently until all of the chocolate is melted and the mixture is smooth. 

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Do you love making cheesecake?

The Real Women of Kraft Philadelphia are searching for the Philadelphia Cheesecake of the Year. Starting June 2, 2014 you will be able to submit your cheesecake recipe and image for a chance to become a national sensation and receive $5000. Entries will be judged by a panel of Kraft judges based on a select criteria.

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Prizes

– The first 250 eligible entrants receive a FREE brick of Philadelphia Cream Cheese
- 5 Finalists will be flown round-trip to Toronto for the Cheesecake of the Year bake off at the Kraft Kitchens
- 1 grand prize winner will be selected from the finalists to receive $5000, the title of 2014 Cheesecake of the Year and will be featured in a national print campaign.

How to Enter

Submit your original, festive cheesecake recipe made with Philadelphia Brick Cream Cheese.  Make sure to include a photo that shows off your finished cheesecake. 

The contest runs until 6pm ET, Monday June 16, 2014. 

Visit the Philly Canada website to see full contest details, rules and conditions and to enter the contest today!

This post was brought to you by Kraft Canada via sheblogs. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Kraft Canada. 


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