Baked Whoopie Pie Cheesecake—Prototype 2:
The batter of this cheesecake gets a major update for late 2015.
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).

4 oz. semi-sweet chocolate, melted
8 oz. (1 cup) 3-cheese blend (see above)
3/8 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
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.

1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
40 oz. (5 cups) 3-cheese blend (see above)
1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon (5 tablespoons altogether) arrowroot
2 teaspoons vanilla
5 eggs

4 small whoopie pies (each about 2 1/2 to 3 inches in diameter, such as from Trader Joe's).
Vertically cut each of these whoopie pies into 6 "slices" (not horizontally—in other words, each "slice" should contain two chocolate "outsides" and cream in between them).

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.

For each of the first two installments, gently scoop about 3 cups of batter into the pan. Add the pieces from 2 whoopie pies, ensuring that they are fully coated and—as much as possible—immersed (this is likely not readily doable on the first installment, but it should be on the second). After adding an installment, bake the pan with its contents for 30 minutes. For the first installment, bake at 325 degrees. For the second installment, reduce the temperature and bake at 300 degrees. 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 60 minutes of baking time reached at this point (30 minutes for each of the first two installments). Now comes the third installment—carefully add the last of this batter (do not add any more whoopie pies at this point) on top of the pan's other contents. Try to fully coat the entire surface, especially wherever whoopie pie 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 80 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 (then immediately add a border of chocolate chips around the edge of this cheesecake, if desired). Continue to cool it down at room temperature for another two hours. After doing so, remove the cheesecake from pan and refrigerate.

Whoopie Pie Cheesecake—Prototype 2 (whole) Whoopie Pie Cheesecake—Prototype 2 (sliced)

I got a little extra creative with an alternating border of semi-sweet and milk chocolate chips.

I made this one especially for Mya, one of my cousin Rachel's daughters. I brought this cheesecake to their place in Vermont, where it was well-received, especially by Mya herself. The taste was great, and even Rachel—herself not a "chocolate" person—still enjoyed a little sliver as well.

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