Olivia here! I've always been the kind of gal whose mood you can gauge by her appetite. If I'm eating, I'm good. When I was in the twelfth grade, our home was broken into twice in two weeks. The second time the person tried to assault me in my sleep but I woke up and scared them off (I've been a light sleeper ever since then). After giving my police statement and watching my family run around like chickens with their heads cut off, I calmly went into the kitchen, made some buttered toast then sat down and watched cartoons. My dad was so shocked but then he realised, eating is how I cope. Even when my dad announced that he was leaving, my first question (no joke) was, "So what are we going to do for Sunday dinner?" My dad laughed as he realised that I was going to be alright (9 years and 5 different therapists later, I'm finally alright).
So baking is how I deal with tragedies. I made tea during the hurricane for everyone and on Sunday I made cheesecake. We didn't cut it until Monday (I'm superstitious that way, we always cut the cheesecake a day after it's made because I worry that 3-4 hours is just not enough time). I decided to make this after having it saved on Pinterest for a few weeks. When I told mum what I was making, her reaction was, "Ew!" but my step dad was excited. Oddly enough, I was never a fan of PB&J as a kid but I love peanut butter so I was interested in how it would turn out!
So here's what I did differently with the recipe. I've attached the original in case you want it that way, but I only needed to make 1 cheesecake (using only 2 packages of cream cheese still gave me enough batter for two cheesecakes so I made two other fun things with the rest of it). So I skipped the sour cream and heavy cream and to save money and time, I used store-bought jam (I now totally understand why it called for jelly instead of jam because jam is thicker). But I did learn that you can melt jam in the microwave. Not sure how much help that'll be to anyone who's just as lazy as I am, but if you're looking for another short cut, I typically put the cream cheese on the stove while something in cooking so that the heat can bring it to room temperature much faster. I also didn't leave my cheesecake in the oven for the full 60 minutes as it began to burn after 20. I assume it's because I didn't use all of the suggested ingredients.
I prefer strawberry but feel free to use any berry jelly you like, such as raspberries, blueberries or blackberries.
PEANUT BUTTER AND JELLY CHEESECAKE
2 hours 15 mins
Author: Lyuba Brooke
Serves: 2 9-inch cheesecakes
· 10 oz raspberries
· 1 cup white granulated sugar
· 1 tsp lemon juice
· 1 tsp vanilla
· 1½ Tbsp cornstarch
· 1 ½ cups graham cracker crumbs
· ½ cup brown sugar
· 1 tsp vanilla extract
· 5 Tbsp melted unsalted butter
· 4 8oz packs of cream cheese, softened
· ½ cup sour cream
· ½ cup heavy cream
· 2 eggs
· 10 oz peanut butter
· ¾ cup white granulated sugar
· 2 Tbsp corn starch
· 1 tsp vanilla extract
- Start by making the raspberry jam because it will take longer than preparing the batter. In a small sauce pot, over medium heat, combine raspberries, vanilla, lemon juice and sugar. Mix well and mash with a spoon. Cook over medium heat, uncovered for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Blend the berries with an immersion blender and cook for another 10 minutes on medium-low heat.
- Whisk in cornstarch and stir slowly until the mixture is thickened. Take off heat and let it cool a bit while preparing the batter and crust.
- Preheat the oven to 325 and grease a 9 inch spring form. You will need a large roasting pan (one that’s bigger and longer than the spring form. I use the aluminum foil disposable ones.)
- In a small bowl, combine graham cracker crumbs, melted butter, vanilla extract and brown sugar. Mix very well.
- Spread crumb mixture in the bottom on the spring form, evenly, pressing it over the bottom and a little up the sides.
- In a bowl of an electric mixer, beat cream cheese on medium-high speed until smooth and fluffy. Scrape sides and bottom on the bowl and beat for another minute.
- Add corn starch and sugar and mix until combined.
- Beat in eggs, one at a time, until incorporated.
- Add peanut butter and mix until incorporated. Scrape sides and bottom of the bowl.
- Lower the speed and add sour cream, vanilla extract, and heavy cream and beat until just incorporated. Raise the speed to medium high and beat the mixture until all mixed very well.
- Spread about a ⅓ cup of raspberry jelly on top of crust, just a thin layer.
- Carefully, transfer batter into the spring form and spread in evenly. (If you are not sure about your springform holding up in water, you can wrap the springform in heavy duty aluminum foil from bottom up to the sides.)
- Add spoonfuls of raspberry jelly on top of the cheesecake batter and carefully swirl it in to the cheesecake but don't mix completely, if should just be swirls.
- Place roasting pan into the oven and place cheesecake spring form inside the roasting pan. Carefully add water to the roasting pan, about half way up the side of the spring form.
- Bake for 75 minutes. Turn off the oven and open the oven door half way. Let cheesecake rest for 10 minutes and take it out of the oven.
- Let it rest for 10-15 minutes on the counter and then gently run a greased butter knife between sides of the cheesecakes and the springform to carefully separate it. (You don't actually have to take the cheesecake out of the pan until ready to serve.)
- Cool cheesecake completely, cover springform with saran wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours.
I'm so glad I tried this! With the excess batter, I made a parfait and waffles for breakfast. You don't have to be a kid to enjoy a nice PB&J and you definitely don't have to be a kid to enjoy this cheesecake!
What are some other ways you enjoy PB&J? Are you a traditional sandwich eater or are you a little more adventurous with yours? My boyfriend likes to add cheese to his. Gross! But if you like it to, I won't judge! Share with us in the comment section your favourite way to enjoy a PB&J!