Hula Boola Coffee Cheesecake

October 24, 2011

Hula Boola Coffee Cheesecake

This recipe (in a different form) was a first place winner a Hawaii coffee recipe contest, and we keep tinkering with it because it's flexible, takes to variety of ingredients, and is totally, utterly yummy. Yes, it does take quite a few steps, and there are cake, crust, topping AND sauce, but it is so worth the time. Make it on a day when it's too rainy to go out and there's not an un-viewed DVD in the house. Ask the family to join in and make it a group effort.

Chef's note: if you can, let the cheesecake set up in the fridge overnight.

This recipe makes 8 generous servings, 16 modest ones.

Hula Boola Coffee Cheesecake
To make the crust: 
1 ¾ cups finely chopped macadamia nuts 
1 ¾ cups finely ground graham crackers 
¼ cup hazelnut flavored coffee 
¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder 
3/8 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature

In a good sized bowl, combine the nuts, coffee and cocoa powder together, then blend in the butter until moist. 
Spread this evenly on the bottom of a 9-10" springform pan and set aside while you make the filling.

To make the filling: 
19 ounces of cream cheese (2 1/3 packages), softened to room temperature 
6 whole eggs 
1 ¼ cup coffee liqueur, e.g. Tia Maria or Kahlua 
1 cup sugar

Preheat the oven to 325 °F.
Use a wooden spoon or heavy rubber spatula and a large mixing bowl. 
Add the cream cheese first and beat until it is creamy and smooth. 
Add the sugar and beat it in until well incorporated. 
Add the eggs, also until well blended, then add the coffee liqueur, but just until it saturates the cream mixture; over mixing at this point can make the filling too thin.
Gently pour the filling into the prepared crust and set the pan on a baking sheet. 
Bake for 1 hour at 325 °F. or until the edge is puffed but the center appears moist. 
It should jiggle when you tap the sides of the pan.
Allow the cheese cake to cool slightly so the puffiness abates.

Topping (Optional, but too much of a good thing is wonderful) Ingredients: 
1 ½ cup sour cream 
3/8 cup sugar 
1½ teaspoons hazelnut flavoring or pure vanilla extract

In a small bowl, whisk all the ingredients together. 
Smooth on top of the cheesecake and return the cheesecake to the oven for 15 minutes or long enough for the topping to set. 
Remove the pan from the over and cool on a rack. 
Refrigerate, preferably overnight, before unmolding.

Wait! There's More!!! 
Coffee sauce 
1 cup hazelnut flavored coffee, freshly brewed 
1 cup sugar

Put the coffee and sugar in a medium sized saucepan and cook over medium heat until the sugar is dissolved, stirring frequently. 
Increase the heat and boil and cook gently until the mixture thickens coats the back of a wooden spoon. 
Cool, then drizzle onto the serving plates and top the cheesecake with this sauce.

Please note: the image may vary from the recipe.