Baked Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake—Prototype 1:
 
I felt that at some point, I would make a combination cheesecake involving two popular flavors—chocolate and peanut butter. Due to my not recording this prototype here until long after I had made it, I cannot fully remember all the details.

However, my best guess is that I built this cheesecake based on the batters of Prototype 10.2 of my chocolate cheesecakes and Prototype 1 or 2 (more likely 2) of my peanut butter cheesecakes, combined with the crust of Prototype 10.2 of my chocolate cheesecakes. Furthermore,
this crust was not baked. It was prepared and then topped by the baked peanut butter batter layer, followed in turn by the baked chocolate batter layer.
 
(No tub used at all in baking the batter layers.)

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake—Prototype 1

Many people, including myself, felt that the peanut butter flavor overwhelmed the chocolate. However, this cheesecake was still delicious.
 
Baked Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake—Prototype 2:
 
It had been more than half of a year since I made Prototype 1. Since then, I had done many refinements to the "chocolate only" and "peanut butter only" cheesecakes. It was now time to try another "Resse's" prototype.

I built this one based on my latest recipes at this point, Prototype 12 of my chocolate cheesecakes and Prototype 4 of my peanut butter cheesecakes. However, I felt moved to include more cheese-like flavor. So not only did I increase the cottage cheese for the two batters (by 4 ounces for each batter), but I added some lemon juice as well (1 teaspoon for each batter) for some tartness. In light of this "liquid" increase, I also boosted the flour (from 1/4 cup to 1/3 cup for each batter). I did not increase the sugar, because I felt that the batters of the aforementioned cheesecakes were easily sweet enough. Another thing worth noting is that—thanks to my chocolate crust refinements—the crust, this time, was baked as well.

Three 16-ounce containers of cottage cheese were used in this entire recipe!
 
Use a tub when baking.

Chocolate Batter:
1/2 cup skim milk
2 tablespoons melted or softened butter
3 tablespoons cocoa powder
7/8 cup sugar
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1/3 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 cups (20 oz.) lowfat cottage cheese, whipped (no-salt-added recommended)
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 eggs

Place this batter into a lightly buttered 9" cheesecake pan, and bake at 300 degrees (batter only, no crust), for about 100 minutes (or until cake tester comes out clean). Cool down, and remove from pan.

Chocolate Crust (bake this one together with the peanut butter batter, below):
4 oz. semi-sweet chocolate, melted
1 1/3 tablespoons cocoa powder
1 cup (8 oz.) lowfat cottage cheese, whipped (no-salt-added recommended)
3/8 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla (next to last ingredient here)
2.2 oz. finely ground Bran Buds

Promptly pour/press this crust mixture into the bottom of a lightly buttered 9" cheesecake pan.

Peanut Butter Batter:
2 tablespoons melted or softened butter
3 oz. unsalted peanut butter
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1/2 cup skim milk
3/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 cups (20 oz.) lowfat cottage cheese, whipped (no-salt-added recommended)
2 eggs

Add this batter on top of the chocolate crust in the pan, and bake at 300 degrees (batter only, no crust), for about 100 minutes (or until cake tester comes out clean). After removing the pan from the oven, very carefully transfer the cooled chocolate batter layer into the pan, on top of the peanut butter layer. Then cool down, and afterwards remove entire cheesecake from pan.
 
It's a frustratingly hard art to place a (cooled-off) whole batter layer on top of another one that is sitting in a hot pan! Somehow, I made out alright in my previous chocolate-peanut-butter prototype. But not this time! The chocolate batter layer broke on me during the insertion, and I had to make the best of re-assembling it inside the still-hot pan. So I got cheesecake cracked in about 5 places as a result (at least this hopefully would not affect the overall flavor, just the appearance).

So why not just bake both batters in the same pan at the same time? Because I had unfavorable experiences with this kind of arrangement back in the 1980's—from a couple of flavored batters combining to my dissatisfaction—to difficulties in getting the cheesecake to cook thoroughly.

I somehow felt that the peanut butter flavor was now too weak in comparison with the chocolate. I also felt that the chocolate flavor was somewhat "sickly sweet" (or too sweet). There was hopefully some tartness, at least in the peanut butter batter, but I wanted more—in both batters.

Despite my personal assessments, this cheesecake went over very well at Living Hope Church, and I got quite a few favorable comments.
 
Baked Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake—Prototype 3 (introduction):
 
Okay, it was time to look around on the Internet for some helpful advice in preparing multi-layered cheesecakes! I also took a good look at what I did back in the 1980's. This has led to my giving another try at baking both batter flavors together.

I also felt that my taste buds had gotten rather "moody" over (in the sense of being too sensitive to) the chocolate sweetness in the previous prototype. But I also felt that more tartness was needed (which I felt would eliminate a need for sugar reduction). So I decided to increase the lemon juice in both batters. I slightly increased the flour with the hope that this now thickly-baked cheesecake would still come out firm enough. Finally, I raised the peanut butter back up a little bit.

Up to this point (from what I best recall), I had always been baking my cheesecake prototypes at 300 degrees. This latest prototype would get off to a 325-degree start, then revert to 300.
 
Repeat Prototype 2, but...

Make these changes for each of the two batters:
Boost lemon juice by 2 teaspoons, to 1 tablespoon.
Boost flour by 2 teaspoons, to 3/8 cup.

And make this change for the peanut butter batter only:
Boost peanut butter by 1 oz., to 4 oz.

And carefully follow these steps below, many of which are new:

Pour/press the crust mixture into the bottom of a lightly buttered 9" cheesecake pan.

Next, add the chocolate (not peanut butter!) batter on top of this crust. Then carefully wrap foil around this pan.

Next, place this pan into a tub of boiling hot water, and put this into an oven, preheated to 325 degrees (not 300 at this point).

Bake this only for about 30 minutes.

Now comes the tricky part! WARNING: Use plenty of caution at this point, due to the pan being very hot! Carefully place the peanut butter batter on top of the chocolate one. How?? Instead of dumping the whole thing all at once on the chocolate, try this delicate approach. Start off by scooping small amounts of the peanut butter batter out of its bowl (or whatever container is being used). A small measuring cup (1/2-cup size is good) or ladle is useful here. Pour these small amounts around the edge of the pan, not the middle (but rather allow the batter to flow there on its own, if possible). This should reduce the likelihood of the peanut butter batter breaching the chocolate one. When the bowl of the peanut butter batter is almost empty, it is probably safe to more directly dump the rest of this right onto what just got poured, which itself should be deep enough by then. Still, it is a good idea to do this gently enough to avoid the chocolate breach.

Next, reduce the temperature to 300 degrees, and return the pan to the oven. Resume baking for about 80 minutes (or until cake tester comes out clean).

The usage of the oven isn't done yet! Now, turn off the oven, but keep the cheesecake in it (along with its tub), with the oven's door slightly ajar. Allow one hour for this gradual cooldown. Afterwards, take the cheesecake out of the oven and out of the tub, but keep the cheesecake in its 9" pan.

Next, cool the cheesecake off, at room temperature, for another two hours. Finally, remove it from its pan and refrigerate.
 
So what was this thick cheesecake like when I finally removed it from the pan? The peanut butter layer was easily firm, but the chocolate one was somewhat "jiggly". The cake tester at this point showed mixed results—some of them clean, others just slightly wet. But after more than 24 hours of refrigeration, I did not detect any jiggle in the chocolate layer. Then I cut the first slice, and the whole cheesecake was firm enough.

Not only did I get a bunch of favorable comments at Living Hope Church on this one (including "not too tart, not too sweet"), but the cheesecake's side appearance in particular was awesome (the whole thing seemed to look, at least to me, "professionally done"—look out, Cheesecake Factory)!

This prototype was so successful that I repeated it a second time, but I made a minor adjustment: Give the chocolate an additional 10 minutes for its baking head start. In other words, in the earlier phase of baking the chocolate batter and crust at 325 degrees, do so for 40 minutes, instead of just 30. I figured that this would give some more firmness to the chocolate batter. With the peanut-butter-related phase—at 300 degrees—unchanged, the total baking time would now amount to two solid hours. Combined with the one-hour cooling inside the oven and the two hours of cooldown outside of it, all this would amount to 5 hours altogether for the "pan heat" phases! Of course, scooping the peanut butter batter onto the chocolate one was going to add some time as well.

But this time, the chocolate batter did not seem to jiggle as much as before. Although there was still some jiggle, the refrigeration that followed would sufficiently reduce it.

Due to the aforementioned 10-minute adjustment being the only change, and this being but an extremely simple correction, I retained the prototype number, 3 (there were certainly no changes to the ingredients).

I brought this masterpiece to my annual family reunion party in July of 2011. One of my relatives, Jodi, used the word "professional" (or some form of this word) in assessing my cheesecake. I'd have to agree on that one. This same word had been on my mind beforehand (probably because of the "tub"). This prototype was well-received at this event.

Of all the culinary efforts that I have undertaken up to this point in my life, I consider this recipe to be one of my best ones yet (if not
the best). It's also one of my most time-consuming ones. In light of all this, I felt that I would present this latest chocolate peanut butter cheesecake's recipe in full, below.
 
Baked Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake—Prototype 3 (full recipe presentation):

For the cottage cheese, no-salt-added is recommended.

Chocolate Crust:
4 oz. semi-sweet chocolate, melted
1 1/3 tablespoons cocoa powder
1 cup (8 oz.) lowfat cottage cheese, whipped
3/8 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla (next to last ingredient here)
2.2 oz. finely ground Bran Buds

Promptly pour/press this crust mixture into the bottom of a lightly buttered 9" cheesecake pan.

Chocolate Batter:
1/2 cup skim milk
2 tablespoons melted or softened butter
3 tablespoons cocoa powder
7/8 cup sugar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
3/8 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 cups (20 oz.) lowfat cottage cheese, whipped
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 eggs

Pour this chocolate batter on top of the crust. Carefully wrap foil around the pan afterwards. Remember to not put the foil on any earlier than this! The goal is to disturb it as little as possible, as a preventative measure against water leakage. Then place the wrapped pan into a tub of boiling hot water, and bake all this at 325 degrees (make sure oven is preheated) for about 40 minutes only.

Peanut Butter Batter:
2 tablespoons melted or softened butter
4 oz. unsalted peanut butter
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 cup skim milk
3/4 cup sugar
3/8 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 cups (20 oz.) lowfat cottage cheese, whipped
2 eggs

After the initial baking is done with the chocolate crust and batter, carefully place the peanut butter batter on top by scooping small amounts of it around the edge of the pan (try to let this batter flow towards the middle on its own), in order to minimize the likelihood of breaching the chocolate batter below.

Lower the oven temperature to 300 degrees, and resume baking for about 80 minutes.

Afterwards, turn the oven off, but keep the cheesecake in it (along with its tub), with the door slightly ajar. Allow one hour for this gradual cooldown. Next, take the cheesecake out of the oven and out of the tub, but keep the cheesecake in its 9" pan.

Cool the cheesecake off, at room temperature, for another two hours. Finally, remove it from its pan and refrigerate.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake—Prototype 3 (in finished form, made with Hood low fat cottage cheese, no salt added—"Always good. Always Hood") Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake—Prototype 3 (with Hershey's, Hood, Market Basket and Trader Joe's ingredients)
 
Baked Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake—Prototype 4:
 
Seemed like over a year had passed since I last baked Prototype 3. Since then I got a roughly 9 1/2" size Frieling springform pan, which would finally get its multiple-cheesecake-flavor-layer debut with the latest prototype here—after many single-layered uses. But would this pan be tall enough for this double-layered attempt? I trusted that it would. Other new developments coming into Prototype 4 would include yogurt cheese and other changes associated with it (see the baked plain cheesecakes for more info).
 
2-to-1 Blend of Yogurt Cheese and Cottage Cheese:
Prepare ahead of time 32 ounces of yogurt cheese, derived from two 32-ounce containers (that's 64 ounces altogether) of nonfat yogurt. If the resulting yogurt cheese falls below 32 ounces, add back enough of the whey (that was strained out from the yogurt) to make up the difference. To this yogurt cheese combine one 16-ounce container of whipped, lowfat cottage cheese.

Chocolate Crust:
4 oz. semi-sweet chocolate, melted
1 1/3 tablespoons cocoa powder
8 oz. (1 cup) 2-to-1 blend of yogurt cheese and cottage cheese (see above)
3/8 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
2.2 oz. finely ground Bran Buds

Place resulting mixture in 9 1/2" (or 9") pan.

Chocolate Batter:
2 tablespoons melted or softened butter
3 tablespoons cocoa powder
7/8 cup sugar
1/4 cup flour, all-purpose
1/4 teaspoon salt
20 oz. (2 1/2 cups) 2-to-1 blend of yogurt cheese and cottage cheese (see above)
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 eggs

Pour on top of crust. Wrap pan in foil and place in tub. Bake all this at 325 degrees for about 40 minutes.

Peanut Butter Batter:
2 tablespoons melted or softened butter
4 oz. unsalted peanut butter
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup flour, all-purpose
1/4 teaspoon salt
20 oz. (2 1/2 cups) 2-to-1 blend of yogurt cheese and cottage cheese (see above)
2 eggs

Carefully scoop this on top of the chocolate batter and return to oven, this time at only 300 degrees. Bake for about 60 more minutes.

Turn oven off, leaving cheesecake in it (still in tub as well), with the door slightly ajar, for another 50 minutes.

Remove cheesecake from oven and tub and let cool in its pan at room temperature for another 100 minutes. As an option, immediately after removal from oven, decorate this cheesecake with chocolate chips (or peanut butter cup candies such as miniature size cups or broken pieces of larger cups) around its edge.

Afterwards, remove cheesecake from pan and refrigerate.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake—Prototype 4 (with a border of chocolate chips) Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake—Prototype 4 (made with Market Basket yogurt and Hood cottage cheese)

The 9 1/2" Frieling worked out nicely in regard to having enough capacity for the two layers (and, of course, the crust).

My memory made a minor mistake along the way. When I began baking the chocolate batter, I had the oven's temperature set at 350 degrees. It wasn't until about 10 minutes into the baking that I realized that this setting was incorrect. So to compensate for this 25-degree error, I quickly dropped the temperature down to 300 for the next 10 minutes. After that, I raised the temperature to a rightful 325 degrees for the remaining 20 minutes of the chocolate layer phase (fortunately, I remembered to resume baking at 300 after adding the peanut butter batter on top).

I brought this cheesecake to the homes of two of my cousins, Joanne and Lauren, on Rosh HaShanah 5773, and I got a number of happy compliments. In particular, when I was at Joanne's, a number of cousins there not only expressed a great appreciation for my latest work, but they particularly liked this one better than the chocolate-only cheesecake that I served a few weeks back during a cousins reunion at my brother Eric's place in Tahoe (see
Baked Chocolate Cheesecake—Prototype 14, for more details). This was somewhat expected, because I myself thought that the one in Tahoe was somewhat too tart. Only yogurt cheese was used for that one—no cottage cheese at all. But I also felt that the California yogurt used there did not strain well either. At least one guest at Joanne's suggested altitude as a factor (the elevation at Tahoe being somewhere around 6000 feet). As for my more recent, made-in-Massachusetts, chocolate peanut butter combo presented here, I felt that the taste certainly was not too tart. The flavor, in my opinion, was decent, with a hopeful balance of chocolate, peanut butter and "cheese". The tartness seemed to be just about right. Maybe the Market Basket brand simply worked better. Could it be the cultures?

Let's take a look at the ingredient list for Market Basket Nonfat Yogurt:
Cultured Pasteurized Grade A Nonfat Milk and Nonfat Milk Solids.
Contains Active Yogurt Cultures including L. Bulgaricus, S. Thermophilus, Bifidus, L. Acidophilus and L. Casei.

Market Basket (aka "DeMoulas"): The store where you always get
"More for Your Dollar" (and more for your cheesecake!)—I, and many of my cousins, really like this supermarket. Sorry, no formal web site for this store. Looks like it wants to keep things simple (and that reduces the costs). No loyalty card to drag around (hooray!), and (aside from grand opening celebrations) one edition of its weekly sale flyer for the whole chain (what is advertised on sale at a given price at one store is on sale at the same price at all the other 65+ locations—none of this narrow-segmented, prices-effective-only-in-such-and-such-city annoyance). But if you are starving for Market Basket on the Internet, may I suggest a great fan site? MyDemoulas.com (aka MyDemoulas.net)—check it out!

I would estimate that more than 50% of the ingredients, at least by weight, of what I have been using altogether in my cheesecakes (and in my entire recipe scrapbook) are purchased from Market Basket. I also like Trader Joe's, another major ingredient contributor to my cheesecakes. This store is very big on natural and organic foods at decent prices, leading me to consider it the "Market Basket of natural food stores", at least with respect to pricing.

I froze what was left of this latest chocolate peanut butter cheesecake (about a quarter of it) not long after Rosh HaShanah. Probably close to one and a half weeks passed afterward, before I thawed it out and brought it to a darts event where Steve and Lesa were playing. Steve enthusiastically raved about this prototype. When I pointed out the border of chocolate chips, he was impressed that I was getting "fancy schmancy" (his words) with my creation. Lesa enjoyed my cheesecake as well. She also told me that her cats had somehow snatched some of the leftover eggnog cheesecake that I made for her a number of weeks back (see
Baked Eggnog Cheesecake—Prototype 16 for more info). Inasmuch as I was informed by her about lactose in dairy products not quite being feline-friendly, it was interesting to know that the results of my cheesecake efforts had somehow become "the cat's meow".
 
Baked Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake—Prototype 5:
 
This one is essentially an arrowroot update.
 
Repeat Prototype 4, but make these changes for each of the two batters:
Cut the all-purpose flour in half (i.e., reduce the flour by 2 tablespoons, to only 2 tablespoons).
Add 1 1/3 tablespoons of arrowroot.
Remember, this is for each batter (i.e., the chocolate gets 1 1/3 tablespoons of this "new" ingredient, and the peanut butter also gets 1 1/3 tablespoons of it—so altogether for both batters, a total of 2 2/3 tablespoons of arrowroot is directly replacing 4 of the flour's tablespoons, while the other 4 tablespoons of this "older" ingredient are retained)! To summarize these updates...

Chocolate Batter:
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 1/3 tablespoons arrowroot

Peanut Butter Batter:
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 1/3 tablespoons arrowroot
 
This was probably the first chocolate peanut butter cheesecake that I brought to Living Hope in more than one and a half years (and the very first cheesecake—regardless of flavor—with a decorative border of chocolate chips that I ever brought there). The dessert was served at one of the church's lunches and fared nicely. Pastor Kim (the senior pastor himself) personally enjoyed it. Gaynell could not resist this one. Unfortunately, she could not stay for the meal. So I cut and served, in advance, the first slice to her, and that cheered her up. Another person, who I think was able to stay for lunch, got an advance slice for herself before this meal began. I guess she wanted to ensure against missing out on this attractive-looking cheesecake.
 
Baked Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake—Prototype 6:
 
For my visit to California around Thanksgiving of 2013, I asked my relatives there to select a cheesecake flavor/variety for me to make for them during my time with them. That choice has led to this latest prototype.
 
2-to-1 Blend of Yogurt Cheese and Cottage Cheese:
Prepare ahead of time 32 ounces of yogurt cheese, derived from two 32-ounce containers (that's 64 ounces altogether) of nonfat yogurt. If the resulting yogurt cheese falls below 32 ounces, add back enough of the whey (that was strained out from the yogurt) to make up the difference. To this yogurt cheese combine one 16-ounce container of whipped, lowfat cottage cheese.

Grease a 9 1/2" (or 9") pan, but do not wrap foil around it until just before the batter is added (spreading the crust in an already wrapped pan can result in greater disturbance to the foil, thus increasing leakage risks).

Chocolate Crust:
4 oz. semi-sweet chocolate, melted
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
8 oz. (1 cup) 2-to-1 blend of yogurt cheese and cottage cheese (see above)
3/8 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 oz. finely ground All-Bran

Place resulting mixture in the greased pan and pre-bake without tub at 300 degrees for 10 minutes, then cool enough to comfortably touch at least the pan's upper sidewall.

Chocolate Batter:
2 tablespoons melted/softened butter (unsalted recommended)
3 tablespoons cocoa powder
7/8 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tablespoons arrowroot
20 oz. (2 1/2 cups) 2-to-1 blend of yogurt cheese and cottage cheese (see above)
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 eggs

Wrap the pan in foil at this point. Carefully pour the batter on top of the crust and bake all this in a hot water tub at 325 degrees for about 40 minutes. Afterwards, take the tub-and-pan assembly out of the oven and promptly add the batter indicated below.

Peanut Butter Batter:
2 tablespoons melted/softened butter (unsalted recommended)
4 oz. unsalted peanut butter
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tablespoons arrowroot
20 oz. (2 1/2 cups) 2-to-1 blend of yogurt cheese and cottage cheese (see above)
2 eggs

Carefully scoop this on top of the chocolate batter (it is best to do this around the edge of the pan and let the peanut butter batter flow towards the middle) and return the tub-and-pan assembly to the oven, this time at only 300 degrees. Bake for about 60 more minutes (if using a 9 1/2" pan). Then shut off the oven and cool the cheesecake down while still in it (and in tub), with the oven door slightly ajar, for about an hour. Afterwards, remove the cheesecake (still in its springform pan) from the oven and tub and continue to cool it down at room temperature for another 100 minutes. As an option, immediately after removal from the oven, decorate this cheesecake with chocolate chips (or peanut butter cup candies such as miniature size cups or broken pieces of larger cups) around its edge.

After cooling down at room temperature, remove the cheesecake from its pan and refrigerate.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake—Prototype 6 Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake—Prototype 6 (sliced)

This dessert was well received by my extended family in the San Francisco/Oakland Bay area. I made this cheesecake at my brother Eric's house in this part of California and served it among the desserts at our Thanksgiving dinner there.

Due to my being in that part of the country, I had to find different dairy products that would "fit the bill" for my recipe. Back home in the Boston area, I would normally use Market Basket nonfat yogurt and Hood no-salt-added lowfat cottage cheese. I ended up settling for a regular-salted cottage cheese, because I could not find a no-salt-added version. Of greater concern, I struggled when looking for a trustworthy (particularly
without added thickeners), plain, nonfat yogurt. But I ultimately managed to locate one that satisfied my shopping criteria. This yogurt was organic, and the brand was Nancy's, a product of Springfield Creamery of Eugene, Oregon. It ended up straining "okay" over a period of probably about 40 hours (and I did not find the taste to be excessively tart like a chocolate cheesecake—Prototype 14 on that one—that I made about 15 months earlier, at my brother's Tahoe house).

Nancy's Yogurt Thanksgiving desserts at Eric's house

In late May of 2015 I repeated Prototype 6, this time using the usual Market Basket yogurt and Hood cottage cheese—and adding an
inner border of peanut butter chips inside a semi-sweet chocolate one! Both kinds of chips were from Trader Joe's. This serious masterpiece was not only a work of my "Home Depot cooking" due to my preparing this cheesecake with a new oven that I recently purchased from this store, but also because I baked this dessert for the Memorial Day cookout taking place there—for my fellow associates to enjoy. Depot-licious!

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake—Prototype 6 (2015 repeat)
 
Baked Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake—Prototype 7:
 
This prototype, prepared in September of 2016, was very likely my very first two-flavor-layer cheesecake made since my major cheesecake batter overhaul that I had done about a year earlier. A particular challenge with this latest chocolate-peanut-butter combo was to divide an egg evenly—not separate the white and yolk, but rather divide the already-blended, white-and-yolk mixture into two halves. This was due to the total "basic" batter (which itself was being prepared in two halves) calling for an odd number of eggs.
 
3-Cheese Blend (1CT-1NC-4YG):
Prepare ahead of time 32 ounces of yogurt cheese, derived from two 32-ounce containers (that's 64 ounces altogether) of nonfat yogurt. If the resulting yogurt cheese falls below 32 ounces, add back enough of the whey (that was strained out from the yogurt) to make up the difference. To this yogurt cheese combine 8 ounces of whipped, lowfat cottage cheese and 8 ounces of softened Neufchatel cheese ("light cream cheese").

Grease a 9 1/2" (or 9") pan, but do not wrap foil around it until just before the batter is added (spreading the crust in an already wrapped pan can result in greater disturbance to the foil, thus increasing leakage risks).

Chocolate Crust:
4 oz. semi-sweet chocolate, melted
3/8 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
8 oz. (1 cup) 3-cheese blend (see above)
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 oz. finely ground All-Bran

Place the resulting mixture in the greased pan and pre-bake without tub at 300 degrees for 5-10 minutes, depending on the mixture's thickness (closer to 10 minutes if thin enough to be fully distributed across the pan's bottom by gentle shaking, closer to 5 minutes if thick enough to require spreading out this mixture by pressing on it with a utensil and/or fingers), then cool enough to comfortably touch at least the pan's upper sidewall.

Chocolate Batter:
20 oz. (2 1/2 cups) 3-cheese blend (see above)
1 teaspoon vanilla
7/8 cup granulated sugar
3 tablespoons cocoa powder
2 1/2 tablespoons arrowroot
2 1/2 eggs *

Wrap the pan in foil at this point. Carefully pour the batter on top of the crust and bake all this in a hot water tub at 325 degrees for about 40 minutes. Afterwards, take the tub-and-pan assembly out of the oven and promptly add the batter indicated below.

Peanut Butter Batter:
20 oz. (2 1/2 cups) 3-cheese blend (see above)
3/4 cup granulated sugar
4 oz. unsalted peanut butter
2 1/2 tablespoons arrowroot
2 1/2 eggs *

Carefully scoop this on top of the chocolate batter (it is best to do this around the edge of the pan and let the peanut butter batter flow towards the middle) and return the tub-and-pan assembly to the oven, this time at only 300 degrees. Bake for about 65-70 (but see comments below) more minutes (if using a 9 1/2" pan). Then shut off the oven and cool the cheesecake down while still in it (and in tub), with the oven door slightly ajar, for about an hour. Afterwards, remove the cheesecake (still in its springform pan) from the oven and tub and continue to cool it down at room temperature for another 105-110 minutes. As an option, immediately after removal from the oven, decorate this cheesecake with chocolate and/or peanut butter chips (or peanut butter cup candies such as miniature size cups or broken pieces of larger cups) around its edge.

After cooling down at room temperature, remove the cheesecake from its pan and refrigerate.

* For more information on half-egg usage, see "Measuring Half Of An Egg" in Cheesecake Tips.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake—Prototype 7

I initially planned to do the second installment of baking (i.e., after adding the peanut butter batter on top of the chocolate one) at 60 minutes, and perhaps this could have been sufficient, but I added another 10 minutes as extra insurance for a decently firm outcome (I tacked on an additional 10 minutes to the initially-planned, 100-minute, room-cooling time as well).

I made this cheesecake in Pastor Kim's honor. The flavor was selected by this leader of Living Hope Church, where I had been serving many of my cheesecakes over the last few years leading up to this point. I served this latest one there as well, alongside a modest selection of other sweets brought by others. The cheesecake was over 80% gone by the time I took the rest home.

Less than a month later, as the new Jewish year, 5777, arrived, I repeated this prototype (maybe I should have referred to this one as "Prototype 5777"—emphasize the 7's), but this time, the outer border of chips were
milk chocolate (more in keeping with the classic Reese's Peanut Butter Cup tradition), as opposed to semi-sweet (which I used on the previous cheesecake). The inner border of chips remained peanut butter. Yum! I also reduced the second installment of baking time to 65 minutes and the room temperature cooling time to 105 minutes. I still had no problems with a lack of firmness.

Prototype 7 with milk chocolate chips

I brought this sweet treat to my cousin Joanne and Jerry's house for Rosh HaShanah, where it fared nicely for a small party (I brought the rest—a little under half left over—home).
 

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