Baked Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cheesecake—Prototype 5:
My Home Depot workplace had an upcoming "chocolate chip bake sale" in mid-May of 2024 for our associates, so I thought that I would bake a cheesecake accordingly. The latest update for this cookie dough flavor was modelled primarily after Prototype 11 of my cookies+creme cheesecake, which I had made about a couple of months earlier.
3-Cheese Blend (1CT-1NC-1YG):
Prepare ahead of time 16 ounces of yogurt cheese, derived from one 32-ounce container of nonfat yogurt. If the resulting yogurt cheese falls below 16 ounces, add back enough of the whey (that was strained out from the yogurt) to make up the difference. To this yogurt cheese combine 16 ounces of whipped, lowfat cottage cheese and 16 ounces (two 8-ounce packages) of softened Neufchatel cheese ("light cream cheese").

Grease a 9 1/2" (or 9") springform pan, but do not wrap foil around it yet (see below).

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
* (white chocolate chips were unintentionally substituted for the brown, semi-sweet ones here—see comments below for more details)

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.

1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
40 oz. (5 cups) 3-cheese blend (see above)
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 teaspoon xanthan gum
6 eggs

Cookie Dough:
1 16-ounce package of chocolate chip cookie dough, separated into 24 pieces (many packages are already like this, i.e., portioned to make 24 cookies).

Expect about 7 cups of the resulting batter, but do not add this to the pan all at once. Rather, this needs to be done in three installments. Wrap the pan in foil just before adding the first installment (to minimize the foil's disturbance and therefore its leakage risk, do not put it on any earlier). Or as an alternative to using foil, place this pan in an Easy Bath Cheesecake Wrap—and don't bother waiting for the pan to get comfortably cool to do so.

For each of the first two installments, gently (especially with the second installment!) scoop about 3 cups of batter into the pan, and add about 12 dough pieces (don't bother breaking them up—keeping them whole is fine and, in fact, recommended—but if the pieces have a tall, chunk-like form, flatten them into cookie-like shapes), ensuring that they are fully coated and—as much as possible—immersed. After adding the first installment, bake the pan with its contents for 20 minutes, at 325 degrees. However, after adding the second installment, bake the pan with its contents, still at 325 degrees, but only for 15 minutes. Then reduce the temperature to 300 degrees, and continue baking for another 15 minutes (that's a 30-minute "baking installment" here—the first 15 minutes at 325 degrees and the next 15 at 300). For both installments here, bake with the pan in a tub filled with at least 1/4 to 1/2 inch of boiling water, but (to reduce spillage risks) do not fill the tub all the way at this point, because the whole tub-and-pan assembly is going to need to be removed from the oven (in order to comfortably add contents to the pan) between installments.

After all this is done, there should be about a cup of batter left, with 50 minutes of baking time reached at this point (20 minutes for the first installment, and 30 for the second one). Now comes the third installment—carefully add the last of this batter (do not add any more cookie dough at this point) on top of the pan's other contents. Try to fully coat the entire surface, especially wherever cookie dough pieces may be showing. Next, return the entire pan-and-tub assembly to the oven. At this point, fill up the tub generously with boiling water. Resume baking at 300 degrees for another 60 minutes (based upon usage of a 9 1/2" pan).

Afterward, shut the oven off, and leave its door slightly ajar, with the cheesecake still inside—and in the tub—for an hour. Next, remove the cheesecake from the oven and tub, and—if desired—add a border of chocolate chips around the edge of this cheesecake. Continue to cool it down at room temperature for another two hours. After doing so, remove the cheesecake from pan and refrigerate.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cheesecake—Prototype 5 (whole) Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cheesecake—Prototype 5 (sliced)

It was my original intent to use semi-sweet chocolate chips, not white ones, for the crust ingredients. Problem was...I FORGOT! My mind had somehow slipped into a "fog" for "regular" crusts (such as what would be used in my plain cheesecakes, for example). However, I still managed to use cocoa powder, so the crust's outcome was still at least somewhat "chocolatey". But this mental slip-up was a rather shocking experience for me!

I got plenty of compliments when I brought this cheesecake to my workplace. This was done on a day which I had off from work. Upon my later on checking in at about 4:00 pm, there were close to 4 slices (about 1/4 of the cheesecake) remaining.

I cut this one up, using a knife almost but not quite long enough for the cheesecake's diameter, before bringing it in for the bake sale. This resulted in the tips of some of these slices being a bit sunken—primarily upon my pulling the knife out horizontally. This likely was due to some excessive softness with the cookie dough, which led me to consider pre-baking the dough into "finished" cookies (before adding them to the batter) next time for better stability.

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