Ever smoked a cheesecake?

We’ve all been there…

I go to the Internet to look up one quick little thing about anything…

…and 4 hours later I’ve cover all of human history and end up watching a video about a South African Vineyard that uses 900 ducks to eat the bugs instead of using pesticides.

Yes, apparently that’s a thing.

Must. Resist. Urge. To. Buy. 900. Ducks.

Must. Resist. Urge. To. Buy. 900. Ducks.

Must. Resist. Urge. To. Buy. 900. Ducks.

Did you see that duck parade though?

Oh man…

I wonder if ducks can be house trained…

One of my Internet forays brought me to this

That is a chest for smoking things.  I know it shows how to smoke a cocktail, but if you watch the video the guy says “or utilizing it for food.”

Smoked food.

Everyone knows how delicious smoked meats are.  BBQ…  Bacon…  Sausages…

mmmmmmm

 

Now I’m hungry.

…and of course, since everything leads to cake I had to do a search on “Smoked + Dessert.”

Surprisingly there’s not much out there on smoked sweets.  Its like the internet is a ghost town on the subject.

Oh, well, I guess that’s a dead-end…  back to duck videos.

Ducks are the new goats on the internet.  Goats replaced cats…  btw.  Keep up.

Hahaha.

OF COURSE I DIDN’T SAY “Oh, that’s never been done so I better not do it.”

I said “WHAT AM I GOING TO SMOKE?”

I found an obscure article about Thai Desserts.  Number 6 on the list is Luem Gluem…

hellofa fun name…

Luem Gluem is infused with pandan leaves and then smoked with a special Thai incense used only for desserts.

Yes, you read that correctly: smoking the dessert adds a floral jasmine scent and a complex layer of flavors to the dessert.

Then I found this!

Look how happy they are!  (P.S.- I want to cook with them, though the grandma looks like she might smack you if you don’t do things exactly right.)

I had to know more!

That is me at my computer researching this Dessert Candle. I didn’t realize I was so green…

They are real, and they are available, of course, HERE

That is me ordering the Thai Dessert Candles.  I’m green, and pretty thick right through the middle…

I’m pretty impatient and it felt like it took FOREVER for these to come in.  They are originally used to smoke things like finished cookies and coconut but I had visions of me smoking anything that would fit under a dome.

Coconut

Chocolate

Flour

Bananas

Butter

Hey, why not?

While I waited the 10 years for the candles to arrive someone told me about July 30th being “National Cheesecake Day.”

It’s true, it is.  The internet is awash with how Cheesecake Factory is having Half-Off every slice of Cheesecake for Cheesecake Day.

*Interesting Factoid about me:  I have been to Cheesecake Factory many many times and have never had the Cheesecake.  I think the menu by itself is SO overwhelming that by the time I reach the end of the mountain of food they serve Cheesecake is the LAST thing on my mind.  It seems like an error in their business plan…

Banker: So tell me about this new place you want to open…

Mr. Cheesecake: It’s going to be called Cheesecake Factory because I’m known for Cheesecake, and the menu will be HUGE, at least 40 pages, and the portions will be HUGE so people will be totally full by the time they get to dessert.

I’m not knocking Cheesecake Factory.  Apparently Its working for them.

Then the glorious day arrived.  I got my dessert candles!

As with most things in life, I had NO CLUE how to properly use these, but it didn’t stop me.

See those bricks of Cream Cheese?

Smoked Cream Cheese?  WHY NOT?

Smoked Cheesecake?  SIGN ME UP!

CHEESECAKE!

I haven’t made cheesecake in years, but I’ve got a great cheesecake recipe.

Behold…  Scott’s Cheesecake!

Match made in heaven…  if heaven is smoky and delicious.

There’s a bed of coconut too but I decided to only use the cream cheese for my initial cheesecake run…

Watch for future recipes with the smoked coconut.  THE POSSIBILITIES!

That’s just a cake dome.  Anything that will hold smoke in will work…

I was sorta afraid it wasn’t doing anything so I smoked mine… 3 times.

hehehe

Well, you know…  Go big or, stay home?

I threw all my ingredients into my food processor and whirred it up.

…and, btw, if you aren’t making cheesecake with a food processor, do it.  It’s THE easiest way, and it makes the texture perfect.

When I went to the pantry to get crust ingredients I discovered I was out of Graham Crackers.

Honestly I probably have a box somewhere…  but…  well…

Organizing the pantry is on my “Honey Do…” list…  Right after weed the garden and fold the fitted sheets.

Ugh.  Another trip to the store.

NOPE.

I found 2 sleeves of Ritz Crackers.  Salty. Buttery.

BINGO.

Perfect Crust…

Gave my cheesecake a water bath and cooked this sucker up.

My cheesecake is a long process.  45 minutes at one temp, 45 at a lower temp, 2 hours in the oven turned off, an hour on the counter, an hour in the fridge uncovered, then overnight in the fridge covered.  Don’t cheat.

This is a perfect cheesecake, no cracks, light yet dense and solid, not overly sweet but juuuuuust right.

Like me.

Waiting overnight is TORTURE.

Look at that.

I was afraid the smoke would be delicate so I decided to make a Pear, Honey and Fennel Compote to go on top.

Notice I put a tiny fork with the slice of cheesecake so I wouldn’t Scarf the thing down as quickly.

The smoke was strong.  Not in a bad way at all, it was just stronger than I expected…  It made the cheesecake so delicious and unusually YUMMY.

The pear compote was a perfect match for it with vanilla, pear and fennel blending with smoke.

Next time I smoke things I will probably only smoke it once, you know… not overkill.

All in all I was VERY pleased with this version of the cheesecake.

I also made a Peach Caramel Sauce to go with it, since the smoke flavor was decidedly not as delicate as I feared.

Oh man…

Hands down the favorite topping for my panel of discerning taste-testers.  OK, just the three of us…  but man, it was so good.

Like “Peach Cobbler in yo moufff” good.

Like “I may need to stop writing this blog for a minute while I get another bite” good.

Go make it.  NOW!

Sometimes as chefs we create something we want to be good.  We really really work hard at it, and sometimes, even when it’s NOT good, we pretend to ourselves that it IS good…  Last week I toyed with a Kombucha Pound Cake.

Essentially, it worked.  But…

…so I decided to take that one back to the drawing board.

Just to make sure I wasn’t creating a big lie in my mind about the flavor, I gave a chunk of my Smoked Cheesecake to Rose over at Shiny Ball Creations.  Can I just say how amazing it is to have someone in town I can foist my Franken-recipes onto?

Me: Hey I’ve got this thing that might be totally disgusting, want to take half of it?

Rose: Sure!  I’ll bring you some of my creations too!

I gave her a chunk and told her to play away.  Go read about her fun inspired topping here!

Oh man, I need to try that!

Go, smoke something!  I give you permission.  Try my Cheesecake!

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Something fun is coming down the pike in a few months.  Let me just say…  it might involve Full Frontal too…

I know you don’t want to miss that!

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