We were celebrating my mom's and my birthday with my family and were planning on dinner at my brother's. I offered to bring dessert and had visions of strawberry pie in my head. That pie only feeds 8 people, and we had 8 adults plus 3 kids who would want a slice too... here comes the Turtle Cheesecake idea.
This recipe is good - really good. I didn't have graham crackers to crumb up - well I did, I just didn't realize I had them in the cabinet. Isn't that the way of things? The day after you need something - there is, just sitting there saying, "come on, as if you couldn't see I was right in front of your face?" Anyway, I used Oreos. Oops... get those Oreos back out of the wind!! This recipe has a chocolate "ripple" of sorts. Hindsight - I would have swirled it a bit more. It sunk to the bottom of the cheese cake and while delicious - it was not swirled throughout. The nuts? Pecans. I took a little butter and roasted the pecans just a little in the butter, then added salt to them. With the caramel, fudge and cheese cake? oh yes, this is a combo worth repeating.
The cheesecake setup perfectly, the strawberry pie? It needed another few more hours, it pretty much feel apart all over, it was a delicious mess, but a mess none the less. The cheese cake? Stood tall and strong and awesome. I feel like I should have a flag and my hand on my heart or something... ok... enough rambling, someone hand me a fork! .... please....
Ultimate Turtle Cheesecake
1-3/4 cup (1-1/2 pkgs) Chocolate Graham Crackers or Oreos (crushed)
1/3 cup Margarine (melted)
3-8 oz pkgs Cream Cheese
1 can Sweetened Condensed Milk
1/2 cup Sugar
3 Tbls Lemon Juice
1 Tbl Vanilla
3/4 cup Chocolate Chips
1/4 C. mini chocolate chips
1/2 C. caramel ice cream topping
1/2 C. hot fudge ice cream topping
1/4 C. chopped pecans (sautéed in butter and sprinkled with salt)
Mix graham cracker crumbs and butter in bowl with fork & press into bottom & 1-1/2 inches up sides of spring form pan. (13 x 9 can be used in a pinch). (We used regular graham crackers because we had a bunch on hand)
Beat Cream cheese and condensed milk together until creamy.
Add remaining filling ingredients until well combined.
Remove 1 cup of filling and set aside. Melt chocolate chips about 1 minute, (just until melted) and mix completely into the 1-cup reserved filling.
Pour 1/2 of the white filling into crust, then the chocolate filling, then the last 1/2 of the white. Take knife and gently swirl colors.
Bake at 300 for 1 hour and 15-30 mins-until light golden on top and edges are set and middle moves slightly. Cool completely & Chill. **(I place a pie pan full of water on the lower rack during cooking time for moisture. Also, I turn oven off and leave cake in oven to cool for 1-2 hours before removing from oven)
Remove outer ring just before topping and serving
Top outer edge and center with Pecans . Drizzle melted chocolate chips and caramel topping all over top and drip down sides.