BANANA SPLIT CHEESECAKE
from “The Cheesecake Bible” (Robert Rose) by George Geary
1 1/2 cups butter cookie crumbs
1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
4 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
1 cup sour cream
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
4 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted and cooled
1/2 cup strawberries, mashed
1 banana, sliced in 1/4-inch slices
Classic Whipped Cream Topping (recipe below)
1/4 cup pineapple topping (store-bought or see recipe below)
1/4 cup sliced almonds, toasted
• Preheat oven to 350˚F.
• 9-inch cheesecake pan, ungreased, or springform pan with 3-inch sides, greased
1. Crust: In a bowl, combine cookie crumbs and butter. Press into bottom of cheesecake pan and freeze.
2. Filling: In a mixer bowl fitted with paddle attachment, beat cream cheese, sour cream and sugar on medium-high speed until very smooth, for 3 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition. Mix in vanilla.
3. Divide batter into three equal portions, Mix chocolate into one-third of the batter. Fold strawberries into one-third of the batter. Keep the last third plain.
4. Spread chocolate batter over frozen crust, smoothing out to sides of pan. Refrigerate for about 5 minutes to firm. Place half the banana slices on top in a single layer. Spread plain batter carefully over bananas. Refrigerate for 5 minutes to firm. Place the remaining banana slices on top in a single layer. Spread strawberry batter carefully over bananas. Bake in preheated oven until top is light brown and center has a slight jiggle to it, 45 to 55 minutes. Let cool in pan on a wire rack for 2 hours. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 6 hours before decorating or serving.
5. Decoration: Pipe rosettes around top of cake with Classic Whipped Cream Topping. Fill center with pineapple topping. Sprinkle with almond slices.
CLASSIC WHIPPED CREAM TOPPING
1/2 cup whipping cream
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1. In a well-chilled mixer bowl fitted with whip attachment, whip cream on medium-high speed until soft peaks form. With the mixer running, sprinkle with sugar and whip until firm peaks form.
2. Pipe a ribbon or rosettes around the border of the cheesecake or ice the entire top.
1/4 cup cold water
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1 can (20 ounces) crushed pineapple in heavy syrup, drained and syrup reserved
1. In a small bowl, combine cold water and cornstarch. Set aside.
2. In a heavy saucepan, combine reserved syrup and enough water to equal 1 cup. Heat over medium heat until bubbling, about 3 minutes. Whisk in cornstarch mixture until thickened, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in crushed pineapple. Let cool completely. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.