Growing up, my mother always tried to make our birthdays as special as possible, and when she would ask us what we wanted for dessert, more often than not the answer was zebra cheesecake.
This delicious and asteticly appealing cheesecake is an easy fix for any occasion
Step 1: Materials
For the filling:
4 packages block cream cheese
14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
2 tablespoons flour
1 tablespoon vanilla
4 squares semi sweet baking chocolate, melted
For the crust:
1.5 cups graham cracker crumbs
1 tablespoon sugar
6 tablespoons butter, almost melted
Step 2: The Crust
1. Take about one sleeve of graham crackers and break them up roughly into a bowl. Then take a tall cup and proceed to continually crush them into smaller and smaller pieces untill you have fine crumbs. You could also use a plastic bag and a rolling pin if you have them on hand.
2. Take 1.5 cups of the crumbs, a tablespoon of sugar, and the 6 tablepoons of almost melted butter and mix them together untill fully combined.
3. press this mixture into the bottom of a 9 inch springform pan and set aside.
Step 3: The Primary Filling
1. Whip up all 4 packages of cream cheese untill they are smooth.
2. Slowly add the can of condensed milk and stir untill combined.
3. Add the tablespoon of vanilla and the 2 tablespoons of flour and mix thouroughly.
4. Mix the eggs in one at a time.
5. divide the batter and put half into another bowl
Step 4: The Secondary Filling
1. Melt 4 one ounce squares of semi sweet baking chocolate in the microwave.
2. Mix the melted chocolate into one of the bowls of batter.
Step 5: Assembly
1. Set up several aluminum foil barriers in the springform pan. The number of barriers depends on how thick you want your stripes, in this recipe I usually do 6 or 7 barriers.
2. Then spoon the batters into each compartent, alternating between the two. It is important that you do not spoon the batter into one compartment all at once because it would push the barriers over and mess up the sizes of each stripe. So go slow and spoon the batter in one spoonful at a time into each compartment.
3. After you finish spooning the batter in, slowly pull up the aluminum barriers and scrape off the batter that adheres to them into a bowl.
4. Take the batter from the aluminum, plus any leftover batter (I had alot of this because I didnt separate it into two equal portions before I started filling the crust) and make a few cheesecake cupcakes with an oreo at the bottom.
Step 6: Baking and Cooling
Baking cheesecake can be tricky so be careful. Set your oven to 350 degrees and pop your zebra cheesecake and cheesecake cupcakes into it. The cupcakes cookfor about 15-20 minutes untill the centers start to set. Begin checking on the zebra cheesecake at about 35 minutes. The thing about cheesecakes is they never look done when they are, take it out when there is about an inch and a half circle at the center of the cheesecake that is still wobbly.
Let the cheesecake cool on a wire rack for a few minutes and then place it in the fridge for about 3 or 4 hours untill it has cooled completley. The same should be done for the cupcakes, only for consiterably less time as they are much smaller.
Step 7: Finished
If you want to take one more step before serving, you can cut the very top off the cheesecake to show the full contrast between layers.
Personally, I love this recipe just the way it is, but feel free to make it any flavor you want. I would love to see people exploring different flavor combonations like strawberry, vanilla, and chocolate for a neopalitan cheesecake, or caramel and pecan for a turtle style cheesecake. The sky is the limit, enjoy!