Last month would have been my mom’s 67th birthday. I made this dessert in honor of her – it combined two of her favorite desserts into one. I’m sure she would have loved this tiramisu cheesecake.
I know we’re well into December, but I wanted to tell you about Thanksgiving. This is only the 2nd time in 17 years that we haven’t had to travel. While I enjoy visiting family around the country, I appreciated staying at home this year. My dad was still in Taiwan, and my brother went to his brother-in-law’s house. We already planned on visiting my in-laws for Christmas, so we decided to stay put.
Obviously, this was the first Thanksgiving without my mom. Had we gone to their house, we would have enjoyed a smoked turkey from the Amish butcher, pounds and pounds of mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, stuffing, my sister-in-law’s cranberry sauce, and a smithering of Chinese food on the side. I managed to order a 13-pound smoked turkey from the Amish butchers, and I made everything else we would have enjoyed in Delaware. I left a place setting for my mom so she could spend the holiday with us.
While I got through Thanksgiving tear-free, I did not fare as well two days later. You see, it would have been my mom’s 67th birthday. My dad was in Taiwan and had friends visiting from Hong Kong. He took them to my maternal grandfather’s house and showed them where he proposed to my mom. They even went to the train station where my parents first met. My dad got teary that morning, as did Addie and I.
In honor of my mom, I combined two of her favorite desserts into one. This is a tiramisu cheesecake that I’m sure she would have enjoyed. In recent times, my mom wasn’t able to chew hard foods very well, but she was able to enjoy my sister-in-law’s tiramisu and my cheesecake (for BREAKFAST – yeah!). So this dessert was made just for her.
My husband, Addie and I sang happy birthday to her in English and in Chinese simultaneously. We hope she was with us to celebrate. I’m pretty sure she gave me a sign from above to let me know she’s OK. I’ll keep those details to myself, but I am comforted to know that she is still with me.
- 6 ounces ladyfingers
- ¼ cup (½ stick) unsalted butter melted
- ¼ cup plus 2 Tablespoons coffee-flavored liquor divided
- 3 8-ounce packages cream cheese softened
- 1 8-ounce container mascarpone cheese softened
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- cocoa powder for dusting, optional
- whipped cream for decorating, optional
- Preheat your oven to 350°F.
- Crush the ladyfingers with your fingers and mix with the melted butter. Add the ¼ cup of coffee liquor. Firmly press into the bottom of a standard 9" or 10" springform pan.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or in a large bowl if using a handheld mixer, beat the cream cheese, mascarpone, and sugar together on medium speed until smooth, about 2-3 minutes. Add 2 Tablespoons of coffee liquor and mix until just incorporated.
- Add the eggs and flour and mix until everything just comes together. Do not overmix your batter or else your cheesecake will get too much air and may crack.
- Pour the batter on top of your crushed ladyfingers. Bake in your preheated oven for 40-45 minutes.
- Once the cheesecake is done baking (it should no longer jiggle in the middle), crack the oven open and let the cheesecake sit, untouched, for another 20-30 minutes. Transfer the cheesecake to your countertop to cool to room temperature.
- Transfer to your refrigerator and chill overnight.
- Decorate with a dusting of cocoa powder, whipped cream, or shaved chocolate as desired.