Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Dulce de Leche Cheesecake Squares

When I started this blog it was so easy to keep up. I fell in love with baking instantly and the thought of baking just once a week seemed absurdly limiting. Yet here I am quite (well, incredibly) late for my update. It seems that I assumed that my personal matters wouldn't interfere with my baking but alas, they have.

At first I was sick four two weeks, and then after that it was dealing with the stress of finals and trying to keep up with my other work and the other things I needed to photograph. Honestly I've let things slow down here a bit more that I thought I ever would, but I have and I'm sorry.

With finals over and my life calming back down a bit, I'm ready to get back into the swing of things. Regular weekly posting and recipes, hopefully even a few pictures from my recent cake decorating class endeavors. Summer term starts for me but I don't expect that it will be too hectic.

Without further ado, I present to you one of my recent favorite recipes. Dulce de Leche Cheesecake Squares!

Individual square

Now I've never made cheesecake before so I was a little afraid of how I would do, but it ended up being surprisingly easy. Honestly my biggest problem was not letting the cream cheese come to room temperature which made it chunky and made for a lot of extra mixing time. I found the recipe at Smitten Kitchen, a site that I love and model my own layout after in some ways.

The recipe itself called to me instantly. I used Dulce de Leche  in some cookies I made previously and fell in love with the stuff from that point on. Plus the Cheesecake Factory has a Dulce de Leche cheesecake that I absolutely adore and order every time I am there. That, and I am always tantalized by chocolate on anything, and a whole layer of it on my cheesecake squares sounded delicious.

Sweetened Condensed Milk Dulce de Leche in the making
Chocolate chips and butter Melting

The only problem taste wise I had with the recipe at all was entirely my fault. As I said, I love chocolate, but sometimes I go a bit overboard. I added a bit more chips than the recipe called for which made the layer of chocolate a little thicker than I liked. At times it overpowered the Dulce de Leche taste which wasn't very strong to begin with, but it wasn't a horrible mistake since, heck, it's chocolate.

layering Hardened

I was very impressed with how simple and easy this recipe was despite how intimidated I had been feeling. It makes me want to try for other cheesecake varieties as well, maybe something fruity. It's nice to finally overcome a baking obstacle that I had been avoiding and I really think it's opened up new avenues in the dessert realm for me.

Individual square II

The original recipe is located here.

Dulce de Leche Cheesecake Squares
Time: 9 3/4 hr (includes chilling) (45 minutes active time)
Makes 64 (1-inch) petits fours

For crust
3 1/2 oz graham crackers, crumbled (1cup)
2 tablespoons sugar
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

For filling
1 teaspoon unflavored gelatin (from a 1/4-oz envelope, will just about half of envelope)
1/4 cup whole milk
8 oz cream cheese, softened
2 large eggs
3/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup dulce de leche (12 1/2 oz) (recipe follows)

For glaze
3 oz fine-quality bittersweet chocolate (not unsweetened), coarsely chopped
1/2 stick (1/4 cup) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
2 teaspoons light corn syrup

Make crust: Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 325°F. Line bottom and sides of an 8-inch square baking pan with 2 sheets of foil (crisscrossed), leaving a 2-inch overhang on all sides.

Finely grind crackers with sugar and a pinch of salt in a food processor. With motor running, add butter, blending until combined. Press mixture evenly onto bottom of baking pan. Bake 10 minutes, then cool in pan on a rack 5 minutes.

Make filling: Sprinkle gelatin over milk in a small bowl and let stand 2 minutes to soften. Beat together cream cheese, eggs, salt, and gelatin mixture in a bowl with an electric mixer at medium speed until well combined, about 2 minutes, then stir in dulce de leche gently but thoroughly. Pour filling over crust, smoothing top, then bake in a hot water bath (I was able to fit mine in a 9×13-inch baking pan) in oven until center is just set, about 45 minutes. Cool cheesecake completely in pan on rack, about 2 hours. Chill, covered, at least 6 hours.

Glaze cake within 2 hours of serving: Heat all glaze ingredients in a double boiler or a small metal bowl set over a saucepan of barely simmering water, stirring until smooth, then pour over cheesecake, tilting baking pan to coat top evenly. Chill, uncovered, 30 minutes.

Lift cheesecake from pan using foil overhang and cut into 1-inch squares with a thin knife, wiping off knife after each cut. (Don’t skip this step! A clean knife is essential for uber-neat squares.)

Note: Cheesecake (without glaze) can be chilled up to 3 days.

Dulce de Leche (Milk Caramel)

Pour 1 can (14 oz.) sweetened condensed milk into top of double-boiler pan; cover. Place over boiling water. Cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, for 40 to 50 minutes, or until thick and light caramel-colored.

Remove from heat. Whisk until smooth.


CB said...


Clumbsy Cookie said...

Great job on your first cheesecake!

Samantha Love said...

CB Oh my god right back at you, these were pretty amazing for something that I didn't even have high hopes for!

Clumbsy Cookies Thank you so much, I hope to try some more varieties in the future. I'm like the cakes on your blog btw :)

mimi said...

can't believe this is your first made cheesecake, it looks so perfect!

Kevin said...

That looks really good!

Erin said...

Those look so rich and tasty. I haven't tried cheesecake from scrach yet, but this might be a good one to try! YUM!!

Sophie said...

congrats on going on a baking adventure you were initially afraid to embark on :D! I am the same way, though, I have to admit :P...some recipes look so scary! You did a great job with these, though, they look mighty tasty :).

Anonymous said...

big appreciation from a fellow baker in london, your dulche de leche cheese cake is to die for! i'm going to indulge this afternoon i think :)

Lady Jane said...

I am so happy you left me your blog. LOVE IT!! I am going to add you to my favorites!
Looking forward to more.

JustSmartLiving said...

I can't wait to try. Dulce de Leche is definitely hitting the world by storm. :)

Chris and Carree said...

Your cheesecake is beautiful, I made my first one on sunday and it didn't anything like that. Nice job. So I found the best vanilla products you might want to check it out: www.arizonavanilla.com they have some pretty awesome products. anyway, well done on the cheesecake.

Anonymous said...

Just found your site. Everything looks y u m m y!
You have given me some inspiration for my next baking adventure:)

Olivia said...

Hmm this cheesecake squares look great and sinful as well. Tks for sharing the recipe.


Cheese Fondue, Beer & Chocolate lover said...

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This course will take your home baking repertoire to the next level. Learn the basics of pâte à choux, the French pastry dough that serves as the foundation of such favorite sweet and savory pastries as profiteroles, beignets, gougères and the scandalous-sounding Paris-Brest (it’s not what you think!). By learning mixing, piping, filling and frying techniques, plus a couple versatile pastry cream recipes, you'll bring the delicate flavors of a classic French pâtisserie to your own kitchen.

Class: La Dolce Vita:Italian Pastries
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Tina Casaceli, Director of Baking and Pastry Arts at The French Culinary Institute, will teach you how to make the sweets she grew up baking with her grandmother. Discover techniques for making authentic cannolis and the classic twice-baked cookie, biscotti. You’ll also explore the sweet side of ricotta, using it to make cannoli fillings and warm honey-and-ricotta dumplings. You’ll soon be ready to say goodbye to your morning coffee and muffin—espresso and homemade dolci will be your new favorite routine!

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Designed to fit your schedule while delivering the same standards of culinary instruction The FCI is famous for, Chocolate Desserts is taught using the same world-class facilities, distinguished Chef-Instructors, and Total Immersion training method that make our career courses legendary. And, with this intensive approach, you'll be amazed how much you'll learn in just 15 class hours

Pen Pen said...

THIS IS CRAZY AWESOME!! I'm gaining weight just looking at it!

kelli said...

Wow! Your creations look absolutely amazing! I'll have to add some of these to my "to bake" list.

Linking you from my blog-

sweet love bakeshop

Becca said...

these look soo good!!

The Chocolate Lady said...

Those look incredible!! Cant wait to try them.

And...is there such a thing as "going overboard" on chocolate????

from my motorhome to yours said...

oh man this recipe should be illegal!!! I bet its low cal too, lol

Hannah said...

These look crazy good! You might have inspired me to start making cheesecakes again...

sony said...

This just dosen't make any sense how DELICIOUS these look. I am having an attack! Oh, & you have an award on my blog! Check me out :)

prosperity said...

Just happen to run into this blog by chance, needless to say I'm new to baking too, so I'm going to try out this recipe looks delicious.Thanks for posting.

Jenn said...

Hi, this week on my site Collectors' Quest I am featuring people who collect cookie jars. I figured since you wrote so much about baked goods (sometimes cookies!) that you'd like to check it out: http://www.collectorsquest.com/featured-week/Cookie+Jars.html

La Petite Baker said...

Your sweets look delicious! I love dulce de leche - will have to try your recipe

Ms. Baking. said...

That looks amazing.
You seem like such a great baker.
I'm just learning to bake.
check out my blog if you can,
and let me know of some things I could learn to bake!
This looks delicious though
I must try when I get better.


Smitten Sugar said...

Yum these look and sounds amazing! My family would go crazy for these! I have never made dulce de leche but this really makes we want to try it out soon! Yummm

Hush and Such said...

Hi Samantha,

I love your blog, and I work for a publishing house, and wanted to know if you may be interested in reviewing Olive Oil Baking by Lisa Sheldon.

Olive Oil Baking holds 120 recipes for home bakers allowing them to learn how to make healthy changes in their favorite recipes without sacrificing flavor or texture. It is filled with recipes that are simple to prepare, using easy-to-find ingredients that are within any budget.

May I send you a copy for consideration?

I look forward to hearing from you!


bubbledancer said...

These are gorgeous! Nicely done. I am a new follower who has a food blog, as well. Check it out if you are ever looking for some inspiration. It's called A Party in my Pantry and it's all about food, too! Keep up the good work. I can't wait to make these. Ciao!

Anonymous said...

Yum! I think these would be great with maybe a cherry marble cheesecake and a layer of chocolate on top. Your photography is soooo beautiful.

Atticelf said...

I don't know how these taste, but if they're 1/2 as good as they look (I'm guessing, "YES") I MUST make them!

Retroho said...

wow looks yummy! I have got to try!



Leah said...

The slice looks amazing, I wanted to lick the screen!
You may like my blog? http://foodempress.wordpress.com/

Silly Mommy said...

That recipe looks delish!! I definitely want to try it soon, I hope you start baking (or at least blogging) again soon!


Savithri said...

Mmm! Looks delicious:)

camelia said...


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Best regards,


Diana said...

Great Job! Looks absolutely DELICIOUS! Will defs have to try this recipe. =)
Please check out my blog.
I'll definitely be crediting you when I make this! =)

Anonymous said...

This looks so wonderful and oh so yummy! I've been on a cream cheese baking binge lately, I'd love to try your recipe! Nice to meet you!

Cakes By Lizzie said...

Your blog looks scrumptious, and you have so many amazing things on here!! I just started up my own baking blog, and I would appreciate it if you would take a look and follow it!


Sam said...

I've been a silent reader for a while, but i had to comment once I died and went to culinary heaven after seeing these. On to my to-bake list (with about another 100 things!) :D

Geri said...

These look incredible! I just started my own baking blog and was searching for blogs that were as excited about baking as I am! I can't wait to see all the recipes you post on here! If you'd like, check mine out too!


Have a great day!

Geri aka Tales of a Sweet Tooth

howtobeperfect said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
howtobeperfect said...

Just to let you know I have nominated you for a sunshine blogger award on my blog - http://theartofbeingperfect.blogspot.com/
for being so ridiculously yummy x

No worries if your award free x

Jutta said...

I have just fallen in love with Dulce de Leche and I have to admit to eating it straight out of the jar over a few days...very naughty! It was a low fat version, does that make it any better...yes I am a little emabarrassed.

But now you have given me a wonderful recipe to try it out in...I just have to buy another jar. Yes I am going to take that shortcut and see how it works cos the one from this jar was amazing.

Natalie said...

Those look absolutely amazing! I'll have to make them soon!

Carmelina said...

This looks absolutely delicious! I am not a cheescake person, but this, I can't resist!

The Chocolate Lady said...

You havent blogged in a while...I hope you are ok.

That Girls Bath and Body said...

i am passing on the i love blog award. you may pick it up at http://thatgirlsbathandbody.blogspot.com/2010/03/blog-awards.html

Sara said...

I want to make this so badly. Since I am a Vegetarian, do you think I could leave the Gelatin out? Does it really do much in helping the filling set up? Thank you!

Anonymous said...

I am going to make this in my mini Staub cocottes!!! I love this recipe. Awesome job.

Pink Ginger Boutique said...

I could lick my screen. These will be added to my list.

Wholesome Chow said...

Ohh...these look so yummy! Thanks for sharing your fabulous recipe! Have you ever done any vegan baking? My company, www.WholesomeChow.com, offers Decadent Vegan Cake Baking Mixes in flavors like Lavender, Chai Spice, Lemon Poppyseed, Chocolate, Vanilla and more!

Check out our website for more information!

Much love,

Chef Veronica
fresh. natural. always delicious fun.

Bonny said...

Haha my Mr. would probably leave me for these Cheesecake squares.

Congrats lovely, and I will be baking these soon! The look amazing!!!

Rae said...

Your cheesecake bars (and everything else you've made) look beautiful! I may have to try this recipe out since I have started my own baking blog.

Beauty 'n' Beyond said...

You need to start blogging again! I miss your blogs!

Adventures in Domestic Cooking said...

These look fabulous!

Bailey M Meadows said...

this looks so good!

tara said...

These look amazing. We use Guittard chocolate for all of our confections. Have to try these!

tara said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jackie said...

I very much admire your love for baking for I love baking as well. I specilize mainly in cookies but I do venture off and bake other goodies to further hone my baking skills. Great job on that cheesecake!

Check out my blog:

Tawny said...

These look great! I just found your site and I love it :)
-Tawny @http://theyearofthecookie.blogspot.com/

Imogen said...

I've just found this blog and this fantastic-looking cheesecake recipe. I hope that the fact you haven't written for over two years is for good reasons (eg too busy at uni, or you got married and had a baby, or you're up to your ears writing your second bestseller recipe book with a deadline looming... something like that). Very best wishes, if you ever read this, and thanks for what looks like a knockout recipe.

Jo said...

look very very yummy! When the occasion comes I must try it! :D

Smulansbakblogg said...

this looks delicious,would love to try this reciepe.If you wanna check out,i have plenty of chessecake recipe.u haft to try mascarpone cheesecake,it`s so good.never taste any more delicous then that reciepe.
please come to my blog and check it out at http://www.smulansbakblogg.blogspot.com

estersinspiration said...

Lovely!! :) I must learn how to make more cheesecakes... I dont usally bake those.

Anonymous said...

Looks delicious! Have you tried a brazilian cake before?
Visit my blog at solplantecake.blogspot.com

jonathan said...

Congratulations on making the top 50 food blogs!

Hawthorne, NJ

Happy.Healthy.Sweet said...

Wow, your blog is great! I am a newby and stumbled across your blog.

Linda said...

it looks like a black sambo dessert at first glance. nice post and recipe by the way.

i am a dietitian
and i believe that moderation in eating is the key to healthy living. i would also like to tell you that Hershey
encourages people to see a registered dietitian and learn more about “moderation” and how to apply it to one’s lifestyle. A certificate will cover up to $250 of the consultation fee.

coco-pistachio said...

follow me and i'll follow you


pleaaase! ive been around since march this year and i still have zilch followers!
id would mean alot to me


Cheryljones said...

Looks very delicious! but when it comes to cooking, I’m having second thoughts, it’s just that I am not so good at it; I really don’t have the magic to make such tasty food. Good for you :)

amarone wine

Ashleigh @ Pregnant AGAIN said...

Your blog is beautiful! The pictures and recipes.

Abbott_Lane said...

These look insanely delicious.

Lauren said...

Wow. These look incredible. I agree with you, I think dulce de leche is amazing! And I love any dessert that you make in bar form, like these. Can't wait to try them myself!

Anonymous said...

This looks so delicious.
I love it.
Thanks for sharing your recipe.

Seattle Real Estate

Anna said...

WOw, its perfect!
Could I come for a tea please? :)

Booja said...

alter some list form something event better..... Just look at that picture make me hungry... :)

Emma Richards said...

Wow, I literally just came across you blog and could not believe this recipe, it look amazing, im going to have to try this! I’ve only just started bogging so it very new to me but if you’re interested here is my blog: http://livelaughlove-emrichgen.blogspot.com/

Marie said...

These look delectable! I will definitely try the recipe! Thanks:)

Courtney said...

These look amazing! They turned out looking super yummy! I'm definitely going to be trying these!

The Addicted Baker said...

So glad you are healthy enough to make some cheesecake. They look quite tempting :)
blog: http://theaddictedbaker.blogspot.com/

kapua said...

finally a baking blog! nomnomnom

Nicola Rose said...

These look delicious! I am definitely going to be giving them a try!

Nicola Lombardi said...

wow these look gorgeous!

Michelle said...

Wow these look amazing!!! I can't wait to try them!

Blubell said...

These look amaazing, need to bake these very soon!

Ashley DeMazza said...

My name is Ashley DeMazza. For years I have been making cheesecake for the DeMazza family Christmas celebration here in Falls Village CT. I think I am going to branch out and try these this year though. It looks just delicious!

Robert said...

This looks very delicious. Have you ever considered throwing a cupcake party? Cake is so last year, Cupcakes are where it's at! There are entire cookbooks devoted to the art of Cupcakes. Ever had a Tiramisu cupcake? Ever gotten a group together to see who can create the funkiest cupcake? Cupcakes Redondo Beach is fun and where it’s at!

Bano said...

Hey im a new food blogger I was wondering if you would follow me im just getting started it would help if I had a few supporters thank you so much please cheak out my blog!

btw these look ahmazing!!
please follow me banosbites.blogspot.com
I,really need some motivation!

Laura said...

Wow, these look beyond delicious! Was looking around for alternative birthday cake ideas but think I will be giving these a try!
Love your blog :]



Anonymous said...

That's the third Dulce de Leche recipe I stumble upon in two hours.
It seems like someone will be rewarded with a sweet chocolate&caramel squares tonight!

Thanks :)

Sugar Babies Kitchen said...

Your Dulce de Leche Cheesecake Sqares look so yummy! I would enjoy making this one. I love cheesecakes. Desserts are my favorite! You did a very good job on it.

Chanting Buddha said...

Looks delicious .. ever tried peanut butter frosting?

Anonymous said...

this is just yummy picture i like it so much awesome friend.

AngelonCaffeine said...

This would be the perfect alternative to my millionaries shortbread, you are an angel!

MuffinTopConfections said...

Oh my god, I have to try this soon. It looks divine.

Claudia Allen said...

Delicious! I love cheesecake!

Confection Queen said...

I know I'll be baking these soon!!!

Anonymous said...

looks amazing! definitely gonna try these. i just started a blog on my baking adventures. suggestions are welcome.


DessertFiend87 said...

Everything on here looks delicious! Especially the caramel butter bars. Ohhh man. I'm following your blog, you should follow mine, too! :-) I'm look forward to your next posting!

DessertFiend87 said...


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Andreas said...

That looks delicious! Maybe you want to check out my 4th of July Flag Cake at http://kakbloggen.se/2012/07/4th-of-july-flag-cake-recept/ ? Have a nice day.

Anonymous said...

ooo just discovered your blog, i've become obsessed with baking recently and just starting to share this newly acquired loved on my blog, will be taking inspiration from yours for sure over the next few months.


city said...

thanks for sharing.

Emily said...

These look wonderfully bad!


city said...

thanks for share.

Mootoosamy Melody said...

Your blog seems really interesting. Your blog is colorful and attractive; I have a big appreciation for your recipes. I learnt new techniques of cooking. I am going to add you to my favorite’s blog. Everything looks yummy and I look forward for more recipes on your fantastic blog. Thank you for giving me inspiration.

Aiglyn Aivy said...

I wanna try this at home too! Its very interesting and it seems so yummy! Thanks for the share Miss Samantha.. Hopefully I could also share with you My blog soon.
cakes bakery in Brooklyn

Naomi Barlow said...

These look amazing!