Back when I was in Greensboro, North Carolina, I used to get a Baileys Cheese Cake from Harris Teeter. At that time, it was quite an indulgence, because it was pricy for a student ($22 if I remember, for an 8” inch dome-shaped layer cake). But it was so yummy after the first try that I can’t help myself thereafter. And of course I know nothing about baking. All I was dealing with were papers and tests… I remember once on my birthday, I bought it and invited some classmates come over to my apartment, we lighted the candles, sang birthday song, and then enjoyed a piece of the cake, alongside with a glass of my favorite wine at that time, Muscat. Before I left Greensboro, I even searched it in the store, but I couldn’t find no more.
Well, today, I made one. Not exactly the same cake but I get to reminisce the taste again. (I made a heart shape cut out of a 9” inch round cheesecake if you are wondering, just for photo taking purpose. :)
Baileys Irish Cream Cheesecake, with Baileys Chocolate Ganache
inspired by Giada’s Limoncello Cheesecake Squares
12-ounce fresh whole milk ricotta, drained, at room temperature
2 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, at room temperature
1 1/4 cups sugar
1/2 cup Baileys Irish Cream liqueur
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
4 large eggs, at room temperature
8 ounces good dark chocolate, break into small pieces
3/4 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons Baileys Irish Cream
For baileys cheesecake:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spray the bottom of a 9 inch spring form baking pan with nonstick cooking spray.
Blend the ricotta in a clean food processor until smooth. Add the cream cheese and sugar and blend well, stopping the machine occasionally and scraping down the sides of the work bowl. Blend in the limoncello, vanilla. Add the eggs 1 at a time, and pulse just until blended. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
Pour the cheese mixture over the crust in the pan. Place the baking pan in deep rim baking pan. Pour enough hot water into the pan to come halfway up the sides of the baking pan. Bake until the cheesecake is golden and the center of the cake moves slightly when the pan is gently shaken, about 1 hour (the cake will become firm when it is cold).
Transfer the cake to a rack; cool 1 hour. Refrigerate until the cheesecake is cold, at least 8 hours and up to 2 days.
For baileys chocolate ganache:
Place the chocolate in a medium-sized heatproof bowl. Set aside. Heat the cream in a small saucepan over medium heat. Bring just to a boil. Immediately pour the boiling cream over the chocolate and allow to stand, without stirring, for a few minutes. Stir gently with a spoon or whisk until smooth. Add the liqueur, combine.