Food photography is a struggle...
I've been meaning to educate myself on the DSLR basics, but as you can tell from my phone-quality pictures, that clearly has yet to happen. Alas, I will get around to it soon and your eyes will suffer no longer!
Inspiration evades me at the moment, so I'll keep it short. This one goes out to my faithful minion and partner-in-crime, otherwise known as Little Sister. She's the only one who harmonizes with me in the car, tastes everything I bake no matter how inedible it appears, and laughs at me while I scramble to follow along with my embarrassing exercise videos. Love you little sis.
She requested a pretzel + nutella combination in the form of a cheesecake (to which I inwardly nodded in approval. I have taught the minion well). And so this was born! You might remember the last nutella pretzel combo on this blog. Tis an exquisite union - salty meets sweet, creamy meets crunchy, chocolate meets not-chocolate, and I am running out of adjectives.
A pretzel crust with a velvety nutella filling and chopped hazelnuts for garnish. Though made with humble ingredients, this cheesecake masquerades as a fancy-pants dessert and definitely tastes like one, too. Best of all, you don't even need to bother preheating the oven! Just put together the ingredients, refrigerate overnight, and you've won yourself Best Older Sister of the Year.
Nutella Pretzel Cheesecake
for the crust:
2 cups crushed pretzels
10 Tablespoons butter, melted
2 Tablespoons brown sugar
for the filling: (adapted from Butter Baking)
16 ounces cream cheese (full fat), room temperature
3/4 cup Nutella spread
1/2 cup confectioner's sugar
pinch of salt
chopped and toasted hazelnuts (optional, for garnish)
pretzels (optional, for garnish)
Crush pretzels in a food processor (or put them in a large zip-lock bag and crush them with a can/something that won't break) until they resemble a fine crumb. Some small pieces are okay!
Mix in a bowl with brown sugar and melted butter. Stir well and mash together until the mixture can be pressed and molded (you may need to add more or less butter).
Press the mixture into an 8-inch springform pan (I like to line the bottom of mine with parchment paper for easy transferring). Refrigerate while you make the filling.
In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese and confectioners sugar until smooth. It's important that the cream cheese is at room temperature in order to avoid cream cheese clumps. Add the nutella and salt and mix together.
Take out the crust and pour the Nutella mixture into the pan. Smooth out the top with the back of a spatula. Sprinkle on chopped hazelnuts and pretzels if desired. Cover with aluminum foil and refrigerate for at least 4 hours. Eight hours or overnight is preferable! Patience pays off :) Serves 8.