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matcha cheesecake {& kermit the frog}

July 4, 2012

It started with a famous puppet creature.

And was inspired by some green tea powder.

And when the two merged…

I found myself facing the cutest Kermit inspired birthday cake!

Edged with buttery chocolate shortbread, enriched with the subtle aroma of green tea, this cheesecake is smooth, light and well, green. Much like a green tea latte.

I am not, by any means, a green tea drinker, but this cheesecake has sold me. The smell of matcha just brings me back to that first bite. I guess I could claim myself a green tea lover.

Well, as long as it is hidden amongst cream cheese and sugar and baked into something wonderful.

  C’mon… you know how hard it is to take well lit photos at parties!


{Kermit the Frog} Matcha Cheesecake

Recipe adapted from Smitten Kitchen and Pig Pig’s Corner

I doubled the recipe below for the shortcrust base as I find cheesecakes are that much better when the crust comes right up the sides. I suggest you do too – it better balances out the cookie to cream ratio I say! I kept a close eye on the cheesecake for the first 12 minutes and had to cover with foil, and add another 5 minutes to get the supposed ‘puff’. Mine was perfectly cooked (jiggly just in the centre) after 50 minutes, maintaining exact temperature as written here (thanks to my oven thermometer, which I tell you, tells me my oven is consistently, without-fail, 30˚ lower than the dial says… Heed my advice – get an oven thermometer!).

For chocolate shortcrust base:

85g unsalted butter – cubed, cold
2 tbs caster sugar
100g flour
1 1/2 tbs cocoa powder
1/4 cup almonds

For cheesecake batter:

500g Philadelphia cream cheese – softened
100g sour cream
1 can (405g) sweetened condensed milk
3 large eggs
2 tbs matcha powder

For chocolate shortcrust base:
Preheat oven to 350˚F (180°C – apologies for the original misconversion!). Place all ingredients for the crust in a food processor, process until you get a sandy mixture with chunks of almonds. Press into the bottom and up the sides (stopping half an inch from the top) of a lightly greased 9-inch springform pan. Bake for about 25 minutes. Leave to cool.

For cheesecake:
Increase oven temperature to 550˚F (Watch for Teflon’s temperature limits!). Beat together cream cheese, sour cream and condensed milk with an electric mixer until smooth. Add eggs, one at a time, beating on low speed until each ingredient is incorporated. Dissolve matcha powder in a tablespoon of hot water before adding to cream cheese mix. Beat well, scraping the bowl down regularly.

Put springform pan with crust on a baking tray or shallow baking pan (to catch drips). Pour filling into crust (don’t worry if it overfills the crust a little) and bake in the middle of the oven for 12 minutes or until puffed. Watch your cake because some ovens will brown the top very quickly and if yours does too fast, turn the oven down as soon as you catch it or cover loosely with foil. Reduce the temperature to 200˚F and continue baking until cake is mostly firm (center will still be slightly wobbly when pan is gently shaken), about one hour more.

Run a knife around the top edge of the cake to loosen it and cool the cake completely in springform on a rack, then chill it, loosely covered, at least 6 hours.

Lightly dust with match powder prior to serving.

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9 Comments leave one →
  1. July 4, 2012 12:18 pm

    OMG! I love the handmade muppet illustrations. Oh, and the cheesecake looks delicious. Wonderful, wonderful creation!

    • July 5, 2012 6:07 pm

      Thanks Tutu! The pictures were printed off the computer in black and white (easily found on Google image search) and I just water-colored them in – easy and effective! We all wore them to the muppet party as ‘badges’ on our chests!

  2. July 4, 2012 2:01 pm

    I bought some matcha powder on a whim for experimenting–this will be a good way to try it out! I love your kermit illustrations too.

  3. July 5, 2012 5:27 pm

    It’s cool to be green!

  4. July 6, 2012 8:36 pm

    Yummm, and also *squee*! So adorable. Also I’ve never tried sweetened condensed milk in a cheesecake before…sounds like something worth trying though! The texture of your cheesecake looks amazing.

    • July 7, 2012 9:06 am

      Neither had I! I think I’ll stick to it in future as it meant no crystally sugar bits – instead a VERY smooth texture.

  5. Cameron permalink
    July 29, 2012 9:51 am

    Hi Christina!

    Safety note: following your recipe, my crust lit on fire after 5 minutes. Upon further investigation, it appears your Celsius-to-Fahrenheit conversion is off… by 100 degrees.

    I feared for my cheesecake, as well, so I decided to play it safe at about 250 degrees instead of 550 degrees.

    I assume this was an honest mistake, and not an attempt to sabotage my cheesecake! ;)

    P.S. it was pretty good

    • July 29, 2012 1:25 pm

      Hi Cameron! I apologise for the misconversion. I am so used to Celcius I’m strugglng to get my head around this new Farenheit business! Thanks for the headsup – and I’m sorry yours was the guinea pig. I imagine the cheesecake didn’t puff up at only 250˚C? But I hope it cooked through alright and you enjoyed it as much as we did – albeit with a burnt base :(

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