Chai-Spiced Cheesecake. (with ginger crust)

Chai-Spiced Cheesecake. (with ginger crust)


I have been berating myself for effing up that cheesecake in Pickerel since it happened, and have thought long and hard about cheesecakes I have wanted to make.
It was a toss up between pumpkin, lemon, and this one.
We have a pumpkin cheesecake at work(that I may or may not have already purchased several times in the last month), and this one is perfect for the event I am attending this weekend.
A friend of mine throws a “Friendsgiving” potluck every year. A sit down dinner with more food than you could imagine.
I will be documenting the whole thing.. TRUST.

I was obsessed with chai some years ago.
And then I got a job in a coffee shop, and drank more chai than I care to discuss.
Which pretty much ruined chai for me for the past 3 years.
Chai cheesecake, though? SOUNDED LIKE HEAVEN.
I decided to make one last night, as I needed a run-through before I let the masses try it.
After what happened last time… NEVER AGAIN, OKAY?

This is the recipe I used.

So the grocery store didn’t have ground cardamom.
Why on earth would they only have the whole cardamom pods?
(people that know what to do with them, natch)

Here’s a bit of advice, reader.
If you see a mortar and pestle on sale for $10, and next to them is a bag of pie weights for $5..
Just fucking buy them, okay?

Cardamom, surprisingly, isn’t that hard to crush with a rolling pin.

You know..
If you don’t fling the rolling pin off the board on the first roll, taking all of the little black seeds with it.
Which I did. And almost burned it all down.
But a regathered myself, and cracked some more pods. (did i even clean that up? i’m pretty sure i did not..)

On the meaning of crust…
I did not wait until my butter was room temp.

I don’t know if that’s what made the crust so.. Hard?
It was indeed 0% of how I like a cheesecake crust.
I want it sugary, and buttery, and melt in your mouth.
The flavor was nice..
And that can be attributed to this crystallized ginger.

For the next round, though, I’m not doing this crust. Fail on the crust. New crust time.
Ginger snap crust sounds like a better crust, anyway.

I didn’t have the pie weights.. And I just threw away some dried beans because they were, “lord knows how old..”
But I read you could use rice instead.
The crust pulled away from the sides anyway.
I’ll be picking up some beans.

I’ve been reading all about people and their cheesecakes, and looking at pictures..
God dammit, what’s with no one else’s cheesecakes puffing up like this and cracking like a souffl√©?

As whole, this cheesecake is pretty darn good.
Texture is ridiculously awesome.
That sour cream topping is to die for!!!!

These are things I’m going to change today, however.
The crust, obviously..
And I’m going to add a bit of cinnamon, and maybe a bit of clove, too..
The flavor was nice.. But very soft. VERY subtle.
I’d like a bit more punch.
I think I might pick up some better vanilla, too.. I do have some vanilla beans..
The trick here is not swinging the other way and overpowering the cake.
That ginger snap crust is going to add more to it already.

Now here’s the problem……
I have a whole chai-spiced cheesecake in my fridge.
Maybe it’s time to make some neighborhood deliveries.