Baked Cookies+Creme Cheesecake—Prototype 7:
No cookie soaking this time! I also doubled up the recipe (and gave the arrowroot a slight additional boost to bring that ingredient to a more-rounded 3 tablespoons) for a church lunch.
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.

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 granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
2.2 oz. finely ground Bran Buds

4 tablespoons melted or softened butter
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons arrowroot
1/2 teaspoon salt
40 oz. (5 cups) 2-to-1 blend of yogurt cheese and cottage cheese (see above)
2 teaspoons vanilla
4 eggs

32 chocolate sandwich cookies (such as Back To Nature Classic Creme Cookies), broken preferably in halves

Pour the batter on top of the crust. Do not pre-soak the cookies. Simply add them, broken up, directly to the batter before baking.

Bake the cheesecake in a tub at 300 degrees for 105 minutes (if using a 9 1/2" pan). Then cool the cheesecake down while still in oven (with this oven shut off) and in tub with door slightly ajar for an hour. Afterwards, remove from oven and tub and continue to cool down at room temperature for another 105 minutes (if desired, add a border of chocolate chips while cheesecake is still warm), then remove from pan and refrigerate.

Cookies+Creme Cheesecake—Prototype 7

I think this one came out a little overdone, at least on some of the cookies exposed at the top. Perhaps I should have taken a two-layered approach, such as first baking a lower layer with all the cookies in it for a while, then adding a small "reserved" amount of "cookie-less" batter on top (just enough to cover the cookies sticking up through the top of the lower layer) for later baking. The baking times that I chose here were based largely on Prototype 5 of my pumpkin cheesecakes. But it may have been that the cookies themselves, due to their relative dryness, reduced the baking times that I actually needed for a cookies+creme cheesecake.

With so many cookies overwhelming the top of the cheesecake, I ended up deciding not to add a chocolate chip border. In fact, the cookies tended to float upward, thus dominating the upper part of this dessert. The "cheese" batter was largely driven downward. I also suspected that maybe I was using too many cookies—and that I should therefore cut them back next time—despite my probable feelings of using too
few of them back in Prototype 1.

I served this cheesecake at one of Living Hope's "communion dinners" (one of those nearly once-a-month meals enjoyed shortly after morning services). The weather was snowy that day with a few inches of flakes, so the turnout was reduced, but not all that badly. There was still plenty of food and desserts served, and I suspected that the snow-related reduction in people present would probably leave me with close to half of a cheesecake. To my surprise, there ended up being just two slices left, which Bill, a leader of this church's Loaves and Fishes ministry, took home (by the way, I gave him a ride back to his place on that day).

I commented to probably at least a couple of people about the cookies tending to float to the top, but at least one person liked the cheesecake that way—with a crunchy top. But another person commented about this prototype
not tasting (or hardly tasting) like cheesecake (she easily picked up on the taste of the cookies)! So it was, indeed, time for me to cut those cookies back.

At least I myself did not find the cookies to be too dry, at least underneath the surface. But I felt that not only was a cookie reduction in order for next time (revert from 32 to 24 of them, or in the case of a "single" size, from 16 to 12?). I also had to come up with an extensive layering plan if I wanted to get more cookies settled towards the bottom.

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