Recipe | Butterscotch Oreo Cheesecake

Patrick here, with a recipe for the weekend.

I recently got a huge craving for Oreo cookies. Those typical American treats, of the ‘milk and..’ kind. Oreos are deliciously satisfying, with a duo of crumbly yet firm, chocolate biscuits sandwiched with a sweet frosted filling. What I love about them is that suspicious tang that they have, an almost salty after-tang. I’m sure that’s additives or preservatives or something, but the less I know to interrupt the enjoyment, the better.

What I craved was not a single Oreo, but something more – an Oreo dessert. I thought about it for a while, yet couldn’t quite find enough inspiration to really think outside the box. So I developed an idea to use Oreo as a base for something, and what could be a simpler? A cheesecake.

(c) Patrick Hanlon / GastroGays

So without further hesitation I began to let my tastebuds run amok and fantasise about which flavour combinations may mingle well with my decadent base. I wanted something sweet and fruity, but seeing as the base was so rich and the topping would be so creamy, I didn’t want something to overtake that signature Oreo taste and I also didn’t want something juicy that may spoil, or even ruin, the delicate creamy head. I eventually came up with two simple flavours which work beautifully together – butterscotch and banana.

(c) Patrick Hanlon / GastroGays

I was conscious that I didn’t want chunks of banana, nor did I want chunks of hardened, sickly sweet butterscotch. I wanted something decadent, light, yet you know it’s a plate full of badness. What I decided to do was make the butterscotch sauce quite thin in consistency, so it hugged the creamy filling nicely and I wanted the banana pulsed to within an inch of its life. What you get when you do that well is an almost porridge-consistency, sticky and clinging together. Perfect for the topping! Here’s how I made it:

Butterscotch, Banana and Oreo Chilled Cheesecake

Easily serves six

Base

  • 2 packets of Oreo cookies (for an extra thick base, use three)
  • 75g butter (melted)

Topping

  • 250g tub of mascarpone
  • 250ml single cream (or for a thicker topping, see below)
  • 1 large organic banana or 2 medium (depending on your personal preference for the banana flavour)
  • 1 measure of Baileys (or if you’re feeling down on yourself, a healthy glug)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Butterscotch sauce

  • 55g butter
  • 55g soft light brown sugar
  • 55ml double cream
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/3 lemon (juice)

(c) Patrick Hanlon / GastroGays

Method:

  1. Crush Oreo cookies in a food processor. Break them down until they resemble thin rubble, almost turning to a powder. You can bash them in a tea towel, but just make sure the consistency is met.
  2. Melt the butter for around 30 seconds in the microwave. I like to melt it until it’s about half liquid and then remove from the micro, allowing the residual heat to melt the rest, while cooling the butter slightly.
  3. With the crushed Oreos in a mixing bowl, pour in the butter and stir until coming together. Very lightly grease the bottom of a springform tin, and then pour in the mixture. Press the mixture together (you can do this handily by getting a smaller sized cake tin and presing it directly on top of the base). You want quite a sturdy base so compact it neatly. Put in fridge/freezer depending on your time. It needs to chill at least an hour in the fridge.
  4. In a food processor, blend the banana(s) with the Baileys until it becomes a thick, sticky, porridge-like substance.
  5. Mix with the mascarpone in a mixing bowl. At this point, add in the final element of your topping. I used single cream, which I whipped quite vigorously until it held together, then folded it into the banana and mascarpone mix. For alternatives, see below. Refrigerate until next needed.
  6. For the butterscotch sauce, melt the butter, cinnamon and sugar over a medium heat. When dissolved, pour in the double cream and stir until combined. I wanted the sauce to be thin, but still be like a golden caramel colour and thicker than single cream. Pour aside and allow to cool.
  7. Once almost cooled, take the creamy mixture out of the fridge and mix in the butterscotch. Don’t over-stir, keep some marbling through the creamy mix. Spread on top of the hardened, cold base and smooth the top. Refrigerate overnight.

(c) Patrick Hanlon / GastroGays

Do it yourself:

A little crushed Oreo on the top would be delicious. Curls of dark chocolate would also be lovely, giving the entire cheesecake almost an Oreo look, with two dark layers hugging a white, creamy layer in between. Another gorgeous serving suggestion would be making more butterscotch sauce then needed. With the leftover sauce, heat until thickened and pour over the cold cake when serving.

I wasn’t completely happy with the texture of my filling, as I used equal parts mascarpone and single cream. It kept its shape, but I do prefer a more dense cheesecake, so if you feel similarly, substitute the 250ml single cream for 250g of plain cream cheese.

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