A Week Of Cake, With Mocha Cheesecake And More


We had a week of cake. Maybe you have to be stubborn to be in the Dharma. There’s a lot of Aries around here.

I made this carrot cake for my birthday. It’s one of the best I’ve ever had and definitely the best I’ve ever made. If you like dense, direct carrot cake (some people like fluffy carrot cake with pineapple and coconut, which is lost on me), this is a serious win. I opted for a little less frosting with a hint of lemon zest to brighten the spices in the cake.


Then there was chocolate genoise with wild blackberry mousse (adapted from here and here, with agar subbed for gelatin for veggie friendliness).

IMG_1192 IMG_1185

I also made a Snickers inspired tart, which has yet to have a written recipe, but if you feel like improvising, it involved peanut shortbread, homemade caramel, peanut butter white chocolate mousse and milk chocolate ganache. All the elements are simple, but the combination is a show stopper.


And finally, mocha cheesecake (recipe after the jump).


Above are a few drawings in the current series, plus a garland-cum-birthday card for one of the cake recipients, which pretty much captures how I feel right now:

Sometimes there are no words. And sometimes we don’t need any.

I have nothing profound to say. I am surrounded by good people. And I get to make them cake. Life is alright I guess.

Mocha cheesecake

Cookie Crust:

2 cups (260 grams) oreo crumbs

¼ cup (55 grams) butter

Dark Chocolate Ganache:

7 oz (200 grams) semisweet chocolate

3/4 cup (200 mL) heavy cream

Mocha Cream Cheese Filling:

16 ounces (448 grams) cream cheese, room temperature

3/4 cup (150 grams) granulated sugar

¼ cup (112 mL) fromage blanc

¼ cup (112 mL) heavy cream

4 ounces (110 grams) semisweet chocolate

1 1/2 tablespoons (22 grams) espresso granules

3 eggs

Preheat the oven to 350˚ F (180˚ C).

Make the crust. Melt the butter and mix with the crumbs. Press into the bottom of a ten-inch spring-form pan. Bake fifteen minutes. Set aside to cool.

Make the ganache. Chop the chocolate and place in a bowl. Heat the cream to a simmer and pour over the chocolate. Allow to sit five minutes. Whisk vigorously until chocolate and cream come together into a smooth mixture. Pour into cooled crust. Place in the freezer to set the ganache while you make the filling.

Make the filling. Place the cream and espresso in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer. Set aside to cool.

Beat cream cheese and sugar until fluffy. Add the fromage blanc and espresso-infused cream (you can strain the granules out if you want a smooth interior; I happen to like the texture). Beat to combine. Melt the chocolate in a double boiler. Whisk in gently. Beat in the eggs one at a time, being careful not to overmix. Pour the filling into the cooled crust-plus-ganache. Place in the oven in a water bath that comes halfway up the sides of the pan. Bake 55-60 minutes or until slightly jiggly in the middle and set around the edges. Allow to cool completely at room temperature. Refrigerate overnight or at least four hours.



4 thoughts on “A Week Of Cake, With Mocha Cheesecake And More

  1. Jourdie,
    Wow the cakes look super yummy.
    Love, Dad

    Michael Ross

    HGA Architects and Engineers
    Direct 310.557.7601

    Please consider the environment before printing this e-mail.

    • Hi Matthew!

      Wow. I really appreciate that you feel my blog merits an award, and I really appreciate your readership. As it happens, I habitually don’t accept blog awards. I’m super touched by the nomination, but I feel that generally blogging awards sometimes become a quick way to connect that, for me, can, on the one hand, become overwhelming, and, on another, become a quick way to reach out that I lean on rather than expressing more in-depth what I like in some one else’s work. It’s a habit I’ve made to simplify my blogging life; I hope that’s okay for you. Thanks for thinking of me.

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