Baked Triple-Plus Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cheesecake—Prototype 1:
In late September of 2019, shortly after I brought a chocolate cheesecake to a family reunion at my cousin Joanie's house in Portland, Maine, Rosh HaShanah took place. For this holiday, I was planning to bring another cheesecake, this time to another cousin's house, Joanne's (no, that's not a typo—in fact, I've got yet another cousin named "Joanne" in addition to the two hosts named "Joanie" and "Joanne"—my family is a huge one, and the difference between those two names is only the fifth letter!) in Peabody, Massachusetts. Earlier that summer Joanne hosted a family reunion as well (to which Joanie could not make it back then due to other plans, hence the aforementioned later reunion at her place also), and I brought a chocolate cheesecake (a loaded version from what I best recall) there. Around the time of the reunion later on at Joanie's place, when I sought input from Joanne for a flavor for the upcoming Rosh HaShanah meal at her house, she requested...chocolate! The good ol' Cocoa Bush standby—its high popularity just wouldn't quit (even when served twice in a row at her home alone)!

My quest for at least some variety (especially because not much more than a week elapsed after I made some kind of chocolate one for the event at Joanie's house) led me to a new chocolate variation that I would bake for Joanne. I had made chocolate chip cookie dough cheesecakes in the past. Those were with plain cheesecake batter and plain cookie dough. But this time I would make one that was much more...chocolatey. Another one, fresh from the Cocoa Bush, for my relatives!
3-Cheese Blend (3CT-1NC-2YG):
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 24 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:
1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
3/8 cup cocoa powder
40 oz. (5 cups) 3-cheese blend (see above)
1 1/2 teaspoons xanthan gum
2 teaspoons vanilla
6 eggs

Cookie Dough:
1 package of double chocolate chip cookie dough (close to 14-16 ounces), separated and formed into 24 round, flat "cookie" shapes (if the dough is too hard to work with, let it get to around room temperature first—this should soften the dough up a bit)

Expect just over 7 cups of the resulting chocolate batter, but do not add this to the pan all at once. Rather, this needs to be done in two installments. Wrap the pan in foil just before adding the first installment. Minimize the foil's disturbance in order to minimize its leakage risk.

For the first installment, start off by gently scooping some batter into the pan just until the crust is fully coated. Afterwards, lay flat about 6 cookie dough pieces onto this batter. Then add more batter, coating these cookies well. Lay flat another 6 cookies, but try to place them such that they are not overlapping any of the first layer of cookies. Coat this second layer as well with additional batter. Next, add a third layer of about 6 cookies, laying them flat also. Try to avoid overlapping the second layer. However, it is okay (and encouraged) if they are directly above the first layer of cookies. Add more batter, coating the third layer. Finally, add a fourth layer of about 6 cookies—laying these flat too—and try to avoid overlap with the third layer cookies, but feel free to position the fourth layer's directly above those of the second. Fully coat this final cookie layer, and—with the rest of the batter less roughly 1 1/2 to 2 cups—try to make the top surface of the batter reasonably level within the pan (it's okay if some of the cookies float upward and protrude a bit, but make sure that they are still lying horizontally).

After this is done, bake the pan with its contents at 325 degrees for 30 minutes, in a tub filled with at least about 1/2 inch of boiling water. 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) for the next installment.

For that second (final) installment, gently add the remaining 1 1/2 to 2 cups of batter to the pan (no additional cookie dough pieces at this point).

After this last installment is in place, return the entire pan-and-tub assembly to the oven. At this point, fill up the tub more generously with boiling water. Resume baking, but with the oven temperature lowered to 300 degrees, for about another 75 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. Now, for the final chocolate touch, add a border of chocolate chips, such as milk chocolate, around the edge of this cheesecake (see photo below). Continue to cool it down at room temperature for another two hours. After doing so, remove the cheesecake from pan and refrigerate.

Triple-Plus Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cheesecake—Prototype 1 Triple-Plus Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cheesecake—Prototype 1 (sliced)

This one was well-received by my cousin Joanne and others who gathered at her house on Rosh HaShanah 5780.

Back to my bushy homepage