The best test? A cheesecake!
I haven't made very many cheesecakes, so I wanted to try something different (when don't I want to try something new?). After looking at a couple of different recipes online, I decided I wanted a chocolate-peanut butter cheesecake. I'd been craving the combination since we had grabbed some Reese's cups during that same shopping trip. Of course, I couldn't find the perfect recipe, so I combined a few to suit make my own.
Peanut Butter & Chocolate Cheesecake
2 1/2 cups of chocolate cookie crumbs
2 tbsp sugar
1/2 cup butter, melted
1 tsp vanilla
3 250g (8oz) packages of cream cheese, at room temperature
1 cup sugar
300ml (around 14oz) can of sweetened condensed milk
3 eggs, gently beaten
2 tsp vanilla
4 oz chocolate, melted (I used Baker's premium dark chocolate, 70% cocoa)
1/4 cup 35% whipping cream
1/2 cup peanut butter
1. Preheat oven to 350F.
2. I used these chocolate wafers - the entire box (minus one, crunch munch) gave me about 2 1/2 cups of crumbs. Just put the cookies in a baggies & run a rolling pin over it (& repeat). Stir in the 2 tbsp of sugar. Mix in the butter & vanilla until crumbly - press into a springform pan. I used the 9" one & had no problems fitting all the batter in. You should probably grease the pan with butter beforehand, but I forgot & had no problems removing the cake. Set aside.
3. In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese & sugar until smooth. Next, beat in the condensed milk. Gently beat your eggs with a whisk before adding them & the vanilla into the bowl. Beat for a few more seconds, until smooth & well mixed.
4. Now here's when I decided instead of mixing the peanut butter & chocolate together, I was going to layer them. So separate the cheese batter in half.
5. Melt the chocolate with the whipping cream. Chop the chocolate into chunks & microwave only for 30 seconds (60-80% power) at a time, stirring in between. Once it's mostly melted, stir it until the remaining pieces have melted away.
6. Stir the melted chocolate into one half of the cheese batter. Gently pour (or push with a spatula) into the crust. Now put the pan in the fridge so that the bottom layer can set a little.
7. Meanwhile, beat the peanut butter into the remaining batter. Once the chocolate layer has been in the fridge for about 10 minutes (I'm pretty sure I left it for less), gently pour the second layer on top. Smooth out the top & pop it in the hot oven for 55 - 70 minutes. I checked mine at 50 minutes & it wasn't ready, but it was after exactly 1 hour.
8. Let the pan cool on a rack for a good 20 minutes before attempting to open the pan & slice in. I didn't wait quite so long (it smelled so good!), so my first piece slid to the side a little. It was still delicious though & the cake firmed up after spending the night in the fridge.
You could try having the peanut butter on the bottom & chocolate on top to get a cake that looks completely chocolate but has a surprise inside. Alternatively, you can stick to a single flavour - just double the amount of chocolate or peanut butter used. For an even more decadent cake, you could chop up some chocolate or your favourite chocolate bar (Reese's or Wunderbar would be my first choice) & sprinkle it on top right when you pull the cake out of the oven.
Enjoy! Let me know how it goes if you try this recipe out - I'd love to see pictures.