Cheesecake is one of those desserts I always forget that I love until I take that first bite. The moment that light, creamy filling hits my tongue, I am thrown into a world of absolute bliss. Then I bite down into that sweet, buttery graham cracker crust and I am fully addicted to the gloriousness that is cheesecake all over again. Then, I kind of go into a moment of food frenzy and blackout and the next thing I know, half the cheesecake is gone and I notice people staring at me from the corner of the room as I wipe away the from my shirt. I try to walk away, but I always end up taking just one last bite. One right at the edge, so I can get more of that delicious crust. After that, I keep myself away from cheesecake for another few months so I can try to forget the whole thing.
Cheesecake rules my life.
That’s why it’s been a while since I last posted a cheesecake recipe for you. Lately though, I’ve been thinking about this one cheesecake. I call it The Cheesecake That Got Away. When I was living in London and found out I was pregnant with my daughter, cheesecake was on the list of foods I could not eat anymore. No big deal, I thought. One evening, though, I went grocery shopping with Vlad and I saw these individually packaged cheesecakes. It was a dark chocolate honeycomb cheesecake with chocolate coated honeycomb. I loved chocolate-coated honeycomb. I wanted that cheesecake so badly, I stopped and stared at it long enough for one of the workers to notice me and Vlad had to pull me away. “One piece won’t hurt.” I said, mostly to myself. “No,” Vlad said, “The doctor said no cheesecake. What about these chocolate-stuffed pretzels?” I took the pretzels, but I still wanted that cheesecake. The next day, I sneaked away to get that cheesecake and eat it in the park where Vlad wouldn’t find me, but it was gone. I checked for days, but they never got them back. I never got that damned cheesecake.
Every so often, I think about how good that cheesecake must have been. How it was probably life-changing. I couldn’t believe he could deny me that one thing. Just one slice. Heck, even half a slice. Last week, I decided this weekend would be it. The day I made my cheesecake. This isn’t exactly like the one I saw, but I like to think it is better. I adapted the cheesecake recipe from Tyler Florence and it is so light, airy and incredibly creamy. I stuck a few pieces of honeycomb inside the cheesecake, but the pieces nestled on top are the best. The ganache is made with bittersweet chocolate and helps to balance the sweetness of the cheesecake and honeycomb.
If you saw on Instagram, I had an incident the first time I made the honeycomb. You are supposed to sift the baking soda, but I was feeling lazy and decided to just whisk it with a fork. I thought I got all the clumps out, but apparently, there were a few small ones I missed because when I started to break apart the honeycomb, I found a few pockets of baking soda hideen inside. It was disgusting! I had to do the whole thing over and trashed most of the first batch which made me upset because I hate wasting food. Lesson learned!
When I first made this cheesecake, I added honeycomb into the batter before baking, but it melted and created extra honey-flavored pockets which were nice. I then coated the honeycomb in chocolate and added them, which allowed them to hold their crunch and was really nice, I recommend trying that out if you don’t mind an extra step of coating the honeycomb in chocolate. Otherwise, keeping the honeycomb and chocolate out of the cheesecake and leaving it on top is what I recommend doing.
Making this cheesecake was the best decision ever. It will be yours, too.
*I know it seems like a long ingredient list, but a lot of it repeats itself.
- 1½ cups sugar
- ⅓ cup water
- ⅓ cup honey
- 3 tablespoons corn syrup
- 1 tablespoon, plus 1 teaspoon baking soda, sifted
- 2½ cups finely ground graham crackers (about 30 squares)
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 10 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 2 (8-ounce) blocks of cream cheese, softened
- 3 large eggs
- 1 cup sugar
- 1½ cups sour cream
- ½ cup, plus 2 tablespoons honey
- 10 oz bittersweet chocolate
- ½ cup heavy cream
- Place parchment paper or silicone baking mat on a rimmed baking sheet. Set aside.
- In a saucepan, add the sugar, water, honey and corn syrup in that order and heat on medium high until boiling, stirring occasionally. Boil until the mixture is 300 degrees Fahrenheit, or it is a golden amber. Quickly add the baking soda and gently, but working swiftly, stir to combine. Pour on the lined baking sheet and allow to cool completely. Break into pieces.
- Mix together the graham cracker crumbs and sugar. Add the butter and mix well. Grease an 8 inch springform pan and pour in the graham cracker mixture. Press the crumbs into the base and sides. Chill for about 10 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Beat the cream cheese until very smooth and there are no lumps. Add in the eggs and mix well to combine. Add in the rest of the ingredients, one at a time, mixing well to combine each without over mixing. Fold in broken pieces of honeycomb into the batter if you would like - I preferred the cheesecake without the folded honeycomb. Pour the mixture into the chilled crust and place on the middle rack of the oven. Reduce the temperature to 325 degrees and bake for 45 - 50 minutes. The center will still be very jiggly. Allow the cheesecake to rest on the counter for 30 minutes, then place in the refrigerator to chill for about 4 - 5 hours.
- In a saucepan, gently melt the chocolate and heavy cream together on low heat, stirring to combine.
- Pour the ganache over the cheesecake and gently spread it out to the edges. Take broken pieces of the honeycomb and place on the center of the cheesecake.