Nacho Average Cheesecake

Mar 20th

Super cheesy (pun intended) name, but I went for it.

I don’t like cake pops. I know they’re the cat’s meow right now but the thing is, I’ve made them before, and they’re a LOT of work. And then the work gets eaten in just one bite! That is so sad!

What I liked about this cheesecake is that it was a yummy, lemony cheesecake that had bunch of candy on top (duh), but the whole she-bang didn’t seem like that much work for the intended affect. I needed a social situation where it would be appropriate to bring a cheesecake that looked like nachos to.

1) A cinco de Mayo party.

2) April fool’s day.

3) To a friend’s house who “gave up sweets” for lent. It’s nachos! If you get tricked into partaking of your sworn off item, it’s not really a sin. You got bamboozled!

Maybe you don’t want to be the devil on your buddy’s shoulder as much as I did. April fool’s will work just fine.

Kids will most definitely enjoy this, both making and eating. It’d be great for a laugh but it really does look like nachos! My one friend thought I’d gone bat-crap crazy and stuck some pita chips on top. The cheesecake itself is very fresh and lemony, which works well with the sweet topping. Experiment with candy; I used what I could find but if you could get to one of those speciality candy shops you could probably do it up right. Lastly – the pie crust “chips” are addicting and I might just make some of those for ice cream dipping.

Nacho Average Cheesecake

Serves 8

Slightly Adapted from Food Network Magazine

Cheesecake

1 (8 0z) package 1/3 less fat cream cheese, room temperature

1 (8 oz) package regular cream cheese, room temperature

2/3 c., plus 1/4 c. sugar

1 tsp. grated lemon zest

2 tbsp. lemon juice

1 tsp. vanilla extract

3 eggs

Yellow and Red food coloring

1/2 c. sour cream (light or nonfat)

Chips

1 roll refrigerated pie dough

Flour (for dusting)

1 tbsp. milk

2 tbsp. sugar

Salsa and Garnishes

8 red swedish fish, diced

2 tbsp. strawberry jelly

Green jelly beans or green licorice twists, chopped

3 tbsp. chocolate  covered peanuts (dark chocolate is best)

3 tbsp. sour cream (light or nonfat)

Yellow and Red food coloring

1. Preheat oven to 350. Spray a pie plate with nonstick spray.

2. Beat the cream cheese with electric mixer until smooth. Add sugar, zest, juice, and vanilla. Beat well until combined.

3. Beat in eggs one at a time.

4. Add red and yellow food coloring, beating as you go and starting small, until the color  you like has been created. Tip, go darker than you think – the cheesecake lightens when it bakes.

5. Pour into pie plate. Bake for 30 minutes or until puffed and mostly set. Remove from oven.

6. While cheesecake cools slightly, mix the sour cream with the remaining 1/4 c. sugar. Spread sour cream over the still warm cheesecake, leaving a 1 1/2 in. border. Chill cheesecake  at least two hours (or overnight).

7. To make the chips, preheat oven to 450 degrees. Unroll the pie dough on a lightly floured surface. Brush with milk and sprinkle with 2 tbsp. sugar. Cut into triangles and place on a parchment lined (or sprayed with nonstick spray) cookie sheet. Bake for 8 minutes or until lightly golden. Transfer to rack and cool completely – then store in an airtight container at room temp.

8. To assemble, stick chips in a (somewhat) sidewise manner across the top.

9. Mix the chopped swedish fish with the jelly in a small bowl and spoon it over the chips. Salsa

10. Sprinkle the chopped greenery (cilantro) around, followed by the chocolate covered peanuts (olives or black beans)

11. Lastly, mix the 3 tbsp. sour cream with food coloring to make it the color of nacho cheese.  Place it in a plastic bag and push it down to one corner. Snip the end of the bag with scissors and push out the cheese across the top – like melted nacho cheese.

12. Keep in fridge until serving (best served within 24 hours).

 

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