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April 27, 2008

Daring Bakers April 2008 Challenge: Cheesecake Pops

Daring Bakers April 2008 Challenge: Cheesecake Pops

It's that time of month again...Time for the Daring Bakers April Reveal! And this month's recipe was Cheesecake Pops from Sticky, Chewy, Messy, Gooey by Jill O'Connor and was chosen by Elle from Feeding My Enthusiasms and Deborah from Taste and Tell.

So cheesecake...As many of you know I'm all about cheesecake! In fact I think cheesecake should be an additional food group! ;o) When I saw that this month's recipe was cheesecake pops I was thrilled. I mean chocolate and cheesecake how much better can life get? And taste wise this recipe did not disappoint, but I, like several others that I saw in the Daring Baker's forums, had a bit of a problem getting the cheesecake to set. The edges set, but the center just refused. I baked it for close to an hour and it felt firm on top and I though I had averted a mushy middle, but not so much.

Daring Bakers April 2008 Challenge: Cheesecake Ready to Make Cheesecake Pops

I mean seriously doesn't that look like a perfectly baked cheesecake? I sure thought so!

But in reality the center looked more like this:

Daring Bakers April 2008 Challenge: Cheesecake Mush Which Wasn't Conducive for Cheesecake Pop Making

I tried freezing it, but couldn't get that to work either. I ended up making a few pops with what I could salvage and then using the unset portion to make some Blueberry Cheesecake Parfaits, because seriously did I mention how good this cheesecake tasted?

Daring Bakers April 2008 Challenge: Cheesecake Pops Failed So Lets Make a Blueberry Cheesecake Parfait

I mean look at that...Even the failed middle looks fabulous! Let's get a little closer look shall we?

Daring Bakers April 2008 Challenge: Cheesecake Pops Failed So Lets Make a Blueberry Cheesecake Parfait

Sometimes when something doesn't work that doesn't necessarily mean it's a bad thing! ;o)

I did end up with about 14 Cheesecake Pops though and oh my goodness...To die for! I used milk chocolate as a covering and it just melded so well with the cheesecake! Alexis really liked them too, but hey my child liking cheesecake...What are the odds? ;o)

Daring Bakers April 2008 Challenge: Cheesecake Pops in the Fridge

We left them all lined up on the tray in the fridge until we finished them. I had intended to send these with Jamison to work as a treat, but 14 wasn't quite enough to share with everyone. The pops themselves really were just to die for. I think it might be nice to bake the cheesecake and simply pour the chocolate mixture on top as a top layer and just serve it that way.

Overall my pops might not have been perfect, but hey I made the best out of what I could and I have to say it tasted good anyway! This recipe most definitely was sticky, messy and gooey, but it also tasted absolutely delicious! And that my friends is always a very good thing. There is absolutely nothing wrong with dessert that gets a little messy! ;oP

Be sure and stop over at the Daring Baker's Blogroll and see how everyone else's Cheesecake Pops turned out! I can't wait to see what May brings!

Daring Bakers April 2008 Challenge: Cheesecake Pops

What You'll Need:
5 8-oz. packages cream cheese at room temperature
2 cups sugar
¼ cup all-purpose flour
¼ teaspoon salt
5 large eggs
2 egg yolks
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
¼ cup heavy cream
Boiling water as needed
Thirty to forty 8-inch lollipop sticks
1 pound chocolate, finely chopped – you can use all one kind or half and half of dark, milk, or white (Alternately, you can use 1 pound of flavored coatings, also known as summer coating, confectionery coating or wafer chocolate – candy supply stores carry colors, as well as the three kinds of chocolate.)
2 tablespoons vegetable shortening
(Note: White chocolate is harder to use this way, but not impossible)
Assorted decorations such as chopped nuts, colored jimmies, crushed peppermints, mini chocolate chips, sanding sugars, dragees) - Optional

Position oven rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 325 degrees F. Set some water to boil.

In a large bowl, beat together the cream cheese, sugar, flour, and salt until smooth. If using a mixer, mix on low speed. Add the whole eggs and the egg yolks, one at a time, beating well (but still at low speed) after each addition. Beat in the vanilla and cream.

Grease a 10-inch cake pan (not a springform pan), and pour the batter into the cake pan. Place the pan in a larger roasting pan. Fill the roasting pan with the boiling water until it reaches halfway up the sides of the cake pan. Bake until the cheesecake is firm and slightly golden on top, 35 to 45 minutes.

Remove the cheesecake from the water bath and cool to room temperature. Cover the cheesecake with plastic wrap and refrigerate until very cold, at least 3 hours or up to overnight.

When the cheesecake is cold and very firm, scoop the cheesecake into 2-ounce balls and place on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Carefully insert a lollipop stick into each cheesecake ball. Freeze the cheesecake pops, uncovered, until very hard, at least 1 – 2 hours.

When the cheesecake pops are frozen and ready for dipping, prepare the chocolate. In the top of a double boiler, set over simmering water, or in a heatproof bowl set over a pot of simmering water, heat half the chocolate and half the shortening, stirring often, until chocolate is melted and chocolate and shortening are combined. Stir until completely smooth. Do not heat the chocolate too much or your chocolate will lose it's shine after it has dried. Save the rest of the chocolate and shortening for later dipping, or use another type of chocolate for variety.

Alternately, you can microwave the same amount of chocolate coating pieces on high at 30 second intervals, stirring until smooth.

Quickly dip a frozen cheesecake pop in the melted chocolate, swirling quickly to coat it completely. Shake off any excess into the melted chocolate. If you like, you can now roll the pops quickly in optional decorations. You can also drizzle them with a contrasting color of melted chocolate (dark chocolate drizzled over milk chocolate or white chocolate over dark chocolate, etc.) Place the pop on a clean parchment paper-lined baking sheet to set. Repeat with remaining pops, melting more chocolate and shortening (or confectionery chocolate pieces) as needed.

Refrigerate the pops for up to 24 hours, until ready to serve.

Makes 30 – 40 Pops

Posted by Dianne at April 27, 2008 6:59 AM

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I am sorry your cheesecake didn't work. The pops that you did look great and I really want some of the blueberry cheesecake parfait!

Posted by: Christine at April 27, 2008 11:53 AM

the flower sprinkles are adorable

Posted by: marye at April 27, 2008 12:54 PM

You know...I think I prefer what you did with the non pop-cheeseypop-cheese than the actual cheeseypop...


Posted by: jasmine at April 27, 2008 1:04 PM

I'm sorry it wasn't baked through but that parfait was a brilliant way to save the day! Everything looks great.

Posted by: Susan at April 27, 2008 1:18 PM

Way to turn a problem into something delicious! I love the parfait idea! And your pops that did turn out are adorable!

Posted by: Deborah at April 27, 2008 1:22 PM

I'm pleased to see you managed to put all that cheesecake to good use. :) My cheesecake needed way extra time then the recipe called for and it was halved. Perhaps, that's where it went 'wrong' yet 'right' in the end for you :)

Posted by: Pixie at April 27, 2008 1:56 PM

Very resourceful with those blueberries! And the pops looked terrific--even if you didn't have as many as you might have liked. Trust me, having fewer, in this case, is better. I hear some beckoning me now...

Posted by: Bumblebutton at April 27, 2008 2:38 PM

Very resourceful with those blueberries! And the pops looked terrific--even if you didn't have as many as you might have liked. Trust me, having fewer, in this case, is better. I hear some beckoning me now...

Posted by: Bumblebutton at April 27, 2008 2:39 PM

I hated destroying the perfect cheesecake, but I do have to say that the end result was delicious!
Great job!

Posted by: Jerry at April 27, 2008 3:32 PM

Frankly, it would have been a shame NOT to use some of this cheesecake with berries. The pops look cute too though.

Posted by: JennyBakes at April 27, 2008 9:12 PM

Love the photos! Mine refused to set in the middle too. Looks like you made the most of this situation...that parfait looks fabulous!

Posted by: Karen at April 27, 2008 11:10 PM

Aha I think you've stumbled on a whole new dish altogether. And a great looking one too!

Posted by: Y at April 28, 2008 7:33 AM

You know, even if your cheesecake did not set, you found a fabulous way to convert it. And the rest of your cheesecake pops look delicious to me!

Posted by: veron at April 28, 2008 12:32 PM

Well the 14 pops you did get look very nice. I love the sprinkles, very colorful.

Posted by: Lucy V at April 28, 2008 12:56 PM

Sometimes recipe "failures" lead to really good alternatives! :o)

I'd like to try this technique again with my regular cheesecake recipe. It firms up really nicely and I think it would work really well for scooping and making cheesecake pops.

Posted by: Dianne at April 28, 2008 1:43 PM

I am glad you were able to salvage some of the cheesecake to make pops with, they are cute. Those parfaits look incredible. Mmmmm

Posted by: Amber at April 28, 2008 2:59 PM

The parfaits were really good. This cheesecake really tasted divine, even if it didn't set up in the middle. :o)

Posted by: Dianne at April 28, 2008 8:52 PM

Dianne, your lollipops are very festive! I had to bake my cake for 75 minutes before it set up completely...

Great idea to make parfaits w/ the rest of your cake!

Posted by: Bruno at April 29, 2008 12:48 AM

I couldn't pass up those little sprinkles when I saw them. They just called to me to be used in this recipe. :o)

Posted by: Dianne at April 29, 2008 8:54 AM

Ohhhh,I only wish I had the sense to "parfait" it! I just had too much going on and couldn't take the time to try and figure out how to salvage it. Great idea!

Posted by: HoneyB at April 29, 2008 9:01 PM

I'm with you on the cheesecake being it's on food group. Nice pops!

Posted by: Ivonne at April 29, 2008 9:34 PM

Thanks! I'm all about cheesecake. :o)

Posted by: Dianne at April 30, 2008 9:58 AM

Now there's a campaign I can get behind... cheesecake as a food group. And your blueberry parfaits to use up the scraps? Brilliant!

Posted by: Dolores at May 1, 2008 11:41 PM

I should run for something and make my platform "Cheesecake the next food group!" ;oP

Posted by: Dianne at May 2, 2008 9:09 AM

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