I came across with this recipe, and I couldn’t wait to try making these elegant-looking cubed cheesecake. One of the many amazing things about these bars is the pecan shortbread crust.
I normally use graham cracker or Oreo crust for cheesecake. And this recipe totally inspired me to go for shortbread crust for cheesecake, because the texture combination of cheesecake and shortbread is simply heavenly.
Now that layer of deep-flavoured salted caramel! It might be a bit too much for a full slice of cheesecake, but for a bite-sized cheesecake square, it’s just perfect, although you will never only have one square.
Ingredients (about 20 1-inch squares):
2/3 cup pecans, toasted and roughly chopped
6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into small chunks
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 packages of Philadelphia cream cheese, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons water
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon flaked sea salt
Preheat oven at 350F. Grease and line an 8-inch square baking tin.
Make the crust by mixing all the crust ingredients in a food processor, until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Press the mixture onto the bottom of the prepared pan. Bake crust for 15 to 18 minutes. Set aside to cool. Turn down oven temperature to 300F.
In the bowl of a standing mixer with a paddle attachment, mix cream cheese and sugar until combined. Add eggs, one at a time. Then add vanilla and salt. Blend until well combined.
Pour the filling in the prepare pan. Tap the pan on counter a few times to release all the air in the batter.
Bake the cheesecake for 40 to 50 minutes, or until the edge of the cheesecake is puffed but the center is still wobbly and wet looking.
Turn off the oven with the door slightly opened, let the cheesecake sit in the oven to cool completely, at least an hour.
Remove from the oven. Chill for overnight.
To prepare the salted caramel, in a heavy saucepan set over low heat, combine sugar and water and heat just until the sugar is dissolved. Add the butter. Let it come to a boil and cook until it reached a golden caramel color.
Remove from the heat and add the cream slowly. Be careful as it will splatter. Whisk to combine and put back on the stove. Let it come to a boil again over low heat and cook 10 to 15 minutes until you reach a nice creamy consistency. Let cool to room temperature.
Pour the lukewarm caramel over the cooled cheesecake, then place in the refrigerator to chill for an hour. When ready to serve, cut into slabs or squares using a sharp knife dipped in hot water. Garnish with sea salt and serve.