Thursday, August 20, 2009

Tale-A-Tale (Part 48): Of Family And A Blissful Oreo Cheesecake

The box of Oreo cookies was screaming rip me, master! since I received it as part of this year’s Eat With Your Family Day campaign. A wonderful gesture, I must say. On that day, employees are encouraged to leave work on time and have dinner with their respective families. So, I guess the cookies will come in as dessert? This annual campaign aims at creating awareness on the importance of bonding between family members and I agree that there’s no better way to it than by sharing a meal together.

It didn’t mean that much to me though, as my meetings with my family have been limited to the weekends when I travel back to Kuala Lumpur from Singapore. But of course, without having to serve overtime on a workday meant that I had some free time to call the folks back home.

Okay, this is getting all too Hallmark-ish.

So, I did rip off the box, two months later. And baked an Oreo cheesecake to share with my family and friends. I guess technically, I did celebrate EWYFD afterall!

Yeah, I know. Many would say that baking an Oreo cheesecake is like a secondary school project because it’s rather simple. But a beginner like me will beg to differ. My objective was simple; to just bake an edible cake. In fact, that’s the question I've always asked my victims as they taste my science projects; whether my stuff was edible or not. I’m not being pretentious but you should try some of my totally-cannot-make-it cakes. Think mud.

I got my recipe from here, Kraft’s official website. Can I just say that the website is amazingly full of simple yet interesting recipes (despite most being repetitious with only the slightest of alteration in ingredients). Searching for the word Oreo alone will generate a result of over 600 recipes! Okay, now I feel commercial. At this point, let me just mention that this is NOT a sponsored post.

The original plan was to bake a Chocolate Bliss Cheesecake but I discovered that the bag of chocolate buttons I intended to use had passed its shelf life. So, only Bliss Cheesecake it’d be then. Using the mortar and pestle pair to grind the cookies for the base was fun but energy-consuming. With that, I’ve excused myself from running that evening. About a cup of sour cream was added, an idea that spurred from the few related recipes I gathered via the search result. I’ve also omitted the vanilla extract, for it was to be served to some Muslim friends also. Extra cookies were quartered and thrown into the cheese mixture, for extra crunch.

We all know and appreciate the fact that size does matter. So, when a 9 inch springform pan was specified in the recipe, anything smaller will result in catastrophe that is not unlike volcanic eruption. Mine was an unfortunate 8 inch. I contemplated for a good minute while the mixer was still running and decided to pour everything into the smaller cavity. The reason being the non-presence of baking/raising flour. It did fill nicely, to about 0.5 cm below the rim. And I felt confident and proud of my logical hypothesis.

You know, sometimes, the ego needs to be bruised in order for us to grow. And grew it did, my cake. Half of the circumference spilt and the cake, despite its rather golden complexion, looked like a mess. Some parts fell onto the heater and generated some smoke as they burned. Bring on the duck or salmon already! But that was not the worst part. After baking in the oven for an hour, it was still wobbly. And I was already late for a karaoke session. I had to prioritize. So, I immediately took the cake out from the oven (hey, I'm just following the recipe) and asked my dad to put it in the fridge after an hour of cooling in room temperature. And off I went to sing my lungs out.

A good 4 hours of frolicking with the microphone over some old and new Cantopop tunes (loved Eason Chan's songs from his H3M album), I was back in the house, hoping to see a chillin', settled cheesecake. In the aftermath of the spill earlier on, it looked rather unpleasant with the broken edges but was now much firmer. Releasing the latch of the pan, I found the cheese mixture bonded well with the cookie base. Cool.

The taste was not too rich and aptly sweet. Rather light too, perhaps due to the inclusion of (sour) cream. My parents liked it, so did my friends.

Self-indulging karaoke session aside, I guess my late EWYFD was well-spent. We should do this more often. And if the economy does recover next year, perhaps we’ll be given something more luxurious. Like roast duck?

On another note, I am both thrilled and sad to announce that MY BAKING IDOL, FatBoyBakes will be conducting his first baking class on 22 August 2009 (Saturday) at The Cooking House, Desa Sri Hartamas. Well, mostly thrilled lah because I believe he's going to bring the house down with his brand of humour and more importantly, practical tips in perfecting bakes. I must say I've learnt quite a lot from his online recipes. And sad because I won't be able to attend his class as I will be in Singapore this weekend. So, if you are game for some educational fun on baking this Saturday (10 am to 2 pm), go sign up for his class now! Click here for more details.

All the best, FatBoyBakes! You'll do more than well, I'm sure.


bossacafez said...

omggggggg this looks so good nic! u r such a good baker :D now i wanna make a cheesecake too. its been over a year since i baked one. r u gonna share yr bakes with us nx time? ;)

Rebecca Saw said...

Your cake looks really creamy n dense tho..but u said its stil light?

Sour cream..hhmm..sure to impart a refreshin note to the overall cake i'm sure!

red fir said...

Looks delicious!

Yin said...

"With that, I’ve excused myself from running that evening." -- It's nice to see that running bit :)

Somewhat similar to how you look for food mentions in my running posts ;)

Selba said...

Gosh... I'm so impressed!!! Well done, Nic!

Can I have a slice of it?

Seriously, your cheesecake looks much much much better than my cheesecake, hehehe...

Are you thinking to sell your baking someday, who knows there's a changing career in the future? ;)

"Joe" who is constantly craving said...

yes agree..karaoke b4 anything else..

Lyrical Lemongrass said...

Wah, giving FBB a run for his money. Like teacher, like student. Well done.

qwazymonkey said...

Wah, Ah Pa would be proud. And what's this about Eat With Your Family Day? What they gonna come up with next? Sing Karaoke Day with Your Friends? Date with Your Lover Day? Walk Your Dog Day?

Ciki said...

hairy! ru becoming a serious baker?!

Ciki said...

eh, will be in sing, next mon - fri.. let's eat:)

Bangsar-bAbE said...

Now I'm hungry! Looks really good...despite the hiccups mentioned. ;) When am I going to be your rat lab??

J2Kfm said...

yeah, our very own Jacky Cheung with his rendition of 700 Years Later? :)

ai wei said...

with sour cream??? how it tastes ar? save one for me pls :P

PureGlutton said...

It looks good, despite the crack on top :P I'm sure it tastes swell too, since it's done with a lot of lurve!

Kenny Mah said...

Hey, there's nothing wrong with being too Hallmark-ish! So says the King of Sap himself. :P

That cake looks like some good eatin' btw. ;)

Camemberu said...

Wow that cheesecake screams "EAT ME!!!"

Eh! I also find cheesecakes daunting. My springform tin is still sitting there unused. lol

But you have given me courage! Maybe I'll finally try making one!

Jun said...

u BAKED?? *gasp!*

stunnned silence...

(personally i think ur photography skills are improving-- love the rustic looking first pic!)

rokh said...

gosh your tale of baking reminds me so much of my baking days - go by whim, hunch, what-the-heck-enjoy-first, then voila yummy cake! (of course i have quite a number of flops but who cares?) and sigh, i got to miss FBB class too due to another event. i hope there will be another

choi yen said...

Baking a cake definitely not a secondary school student's project lah!!!

ladyironchef said...

whoa, EWYFC sounds uber cool! and your cheesecake looks more than edible can, it seems so nice! good things must share :D

backStreetGluttons said...

Surely your Xtra-close proximity to some cutting edge KL bakers has produced the desired fluffy effect of a mouth blowing transformation from able street eater to an attacking Up-rising dough master ! A most promising endeavor which will stand u well 4 the next EWYFC

HairyBerry said...

evan 이벤젤린, woah, thanks for the compliment! :) sure, sharing is cool! but i'm kinda shy lah, cos u are a pro baker....i need to improve first!

thenomadgourmand, yeah, relatively lighter than normal cheesecake. of course not cotton light la..hehe..yeah, i thought a little sour would do the cake good! :)

ice, thanks!!!

yin, yeah, been running for about a month now. kinda fun. :) lol on the similarity. the crazy things we do for our interests, eh? hehe...

selba, thanks so much! haha, i would like to share with you of course! but u are so far away..haha! one day, hopefully. :) oh no, definitely not going into baking. i'm just doing it for fun. i'm more interested in hokkien mee! hehe

joe, yeah man, that's the spirit! hmmm, reminds me that i've not been k-ing for a while d..hehe

lyrical lemongrass, woah, thank you for the compliment! i heard fbb's class was a success. that's excellent! hopefully can attend his next class la.

qwazymonkey, HAHAHA! i'll go for Sing Karaoke Day with Your Friends ANYDAY!! imagine taking a few hours off work to go sing! and makan in between. woah!

cumi & ciki, seriously, serious baker? a big seriously no! i do this for fun lah. but a serious hokkien mee cook, ok, that i wanna be serious about..hehe

oh, and great seeing you yesterday! we'll meet again soon! :D

bangsar-babe, thanks for the compliment!! hehe, sure, i always welcome a lab rat! let me improve somemore first la. then only got guts to present to y'all pro foodies..hehe

j2kfm, WOAHHH! *blush* hmmm, jacky cheung + eason chan = jacky chan? hehehehe...

HairyBerry said...

ai wei, it was sweet with a bit of sourish taste to it. i kinda liked it! :) aiyoh, sudah habis lah...sorry ar...hehe..hope to bake one soon! :)

pureglutton, awwww, thanks for words! the ultimate test was my parents' tastebuds. luckily they kinda liked it. :)

kenny, OH TIDAK!!!! no dewan tanda (hallmark) yang keterlebihan for me! haha! hey, too bad u couldnt join us last sunday. call me when u r here again, ya! :) and thanks for the compliment on the kek keju!

camemberu, ooohh, u must try using your springform tin! ever since i bought it, i've not used others, even when it was irrelevant...i like mechanical stuff..hehe..gambatte kudasai on the your cheesecake attempt!

jun, HAHAHAHA! ya lah, i do bake once in a while. sometimes tak jadi one. hey, thanks for the compliment on the pics as well. still learning la. but i must admit it's a fun hobby!

rokh, trial and error, i guess is the best way to learn. haha. oh, u intended to attend fbb's class as well. hope to meet u at the next class! it'll be fun!

mimi, i agree! and the whole baking process can be both fun and educational! :D

ladyironchef, thanks for the compliment, dude! definitely agree that good things must be shared. hopefully i'll be able to bake better stuff. i dont dare to serve foodies mediocre stuff. later, i kena condemn..HAHAHA!

backstreetgluttons, haha, well, fbb is indeed a great inspiration. i think i need to work on the fundamentals first la, before venturing into more complicated recipes. hopefully, the next EWYFD, we'll have duck. i dont mind goose either..hehe.