Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Happy Birthday, Susie!

Toffee Crunch Caramel Cheesecake

We have lots of spring and summer birthdays at work, so it's safe to say that there will be quite a few birthday treat blog posts popping up around here - and birthday treat posts are some of my favorite posts to write, so I'm very excited! Even better, my friend Nicol will now be in charge of "birthday treat photography", and she's MUCH handier with the camera than I am, which is great...because now I have beautiful photos to post, like this one:

That is one good-looking cheesecake, isn't it? I think it may just be the best cheesecake I've ever had! It starts with a delicious gingersnap crust, then a basic cheesecake made with brown sugar, but the real kicker...the oh-my-goodness-this-is-the-mother -of-all-cheesecakes finale...is the topping: homemade caramel sauce and a ring of toffee candy bar pieces. This dessert was incredible! My two baking tips: first, try to use whole English toffee bars (like Heath or Skor) and cut them up into big chunks - using the toffee baking bits you can usually find in a bag near the chocolate chips at the grocery store won't yield very big chunks for the topping. Second, the trickiest part of the recipe is the caramel sauce - you have to watch it carefully, as it can go from "perfect" to "burnt" very quickly. All in all, though, it's a fairly easy recipe to put together - especially if you've made cheesecakes before.

Susie is one of our preschool teachers, and she's lots of fun (she loves cheesecake, which automatically makes her fun in my book). I'm so glad she picked this recipe for her birthday, because it probably isn't something I would have ventured to make otherwise. She has a son, Gabe, who is in our middle preschool room, and I don't think he was too excited about the cheesecake...but he was a good sport and hung out with her in the staff room while we had birthday treats anyway. Thanks again to Nicol for the fabulous photos, and to Susie for letting us celebrate with her!


swirlingnotions said...

I'm not kidding, I just drooled when this photo came up in Bloglines. This looks outstanding! You and your desserts, my dear. Looking good!

Elisabeth said...

Thanks, Lia! :)