ORANGE Grand Marnier Compote CHEESECAKE

MONTREAL has scrumptious CHEESECAKE.
They can either please discerning palates or serve to inspire home bakers' creations.

A past inspiration meets me again in the kitchen...
Orange and Grand Marnier join cream cheese.

This cream cheese laden dessert can at times be one of those 'hit or miss' types of concoctions. 
Nothing worse than expecting a smooth morsel as opposed to a dry, stick to the upper palate. 

Please don't get me started on the 'light' cream cheese...
this is one dessert which needs to go fat all the way. 
Yes, you read right, especially from one who usually tries to lighten up recipes every chance she gets.

Nowhere will one find the very distinctive CHEESECAKE flavour creations...
as are made by some pastry chefs right here in MONTREAL. 
Once you've experienced a creamy mouthful, you won't be able to put your fork down.

Here's an adorable, tiny bistro / pastry shop in...

one of my favourite 'quartiers' in the Laurier, East, Plateau.

   Patisserie Rhubarbe's pastry chef, Stéphanie Labelle who trained with...
none other than Pierre Hermé is a magician with sweets. 
Besides her basket of excellent pastries, her elegant cheesecake is always a dreamy mouthful.  
The base has a caramel, crumble like texture, topped with two layers of smoothness...
 garnished with some gorgeous fruit and nut decoration.
 If you have a chance, do take the time to have their brunch...
or at the very least have a coffee and a delectable pastry.

Using the navel orange had once revealed an incredible tasting compote with Grand Marnier.
It was integrated into a European inspired ORANGE spice ALMOND flourless cake

I had a strong impulse to integrate this same orange flavoured compote into...

this lusciously, smooth cheesecake extraordinaire.

Here's the perfect combination of...

decadent, sweet, and tangy, all rolled into one dessert.

ORANGE Grand Marnier Compote cheesecake

Serves 10 persons


(American / Metric measures)

Part 1 - Orange compote:
(make ahead) will = about 2 cups (520ml) volume measured
. 6 large Navel oranges
. 1/2 cup (110g) brown sugar, packed
. 1/4 cup (60ml) water
. 1/4 cup (60ml) Grand Marnier liquor*
Other Orange-flavoured liquors: Orange Brandy, Marie Brizard-Orange Curacao or Triple Sec.

Part 2 - Crust:
. 1-3/4 cups (160g) cookie crumb
. 1/4 cup (24g) dutch processed cocoa powder
. 1/4 cup (60ml) grapeseed oil
. 1/4 cup (60ml) maple syrup
Part-3 - Filling:
. 2-1/2 pkgs. (625g) cream cheese, (softened 2hrs.)
. 1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar
. 4 xLarge eggs
. 1 cup (250ml) sour cream
. 1 Tbsp. (15ml) reserved Grand Marnier juice
Garnish: Cocoa powder and finely zested orange


. Part-1...Orange Compote: Making the orange compote a day ahead is best:  
1. In a medium saucepan, cook down the peeled and segmented oranges, along with brown sugar and water on the medium-high heat setting.   As soon as a boil action has surfaced, lower the heat to a very light simmer (one notch above the low setting).   Place the lid back onto the saucepan and simmer for 30 minutes. 
2. Afterwards, uncover pot to add the liquor, stir and leave uncovered for another 15 minutes.  Afterwards, turn the heat off and leave it there to cool off for another 30 minutes.   MEANWHILE, prepare a sieve lined with cheesecloth in order to strain the orange pulp compote.  Make sure all liquid syrup is strained.  This usually takes about 15 minutes.  Set aside the orange pulp temporarily if making the cake the same day or refrigerate if making the cake the next day.  Note: Reserve 1 Tbsp. of the strained orange syrup to later place back into the cheesecake batter.  For the rest...of the strained orange syrup for  further reduction into a thicker syrup...or better yet, go ahead and make fabulous Mimosa drinks.

. Part 2 - Crust:  
3. In a bowl, stir the cookie crumbs, cocoa powder, oil and maple syrup until a moistness is realized. Press evenly at the bottom of the 9 inch (23cm) springform pan.  BAKE for 12 minutes at 350F/180C/Gas4.  Cool completely at room temperature. Set aside. LOWER the oven temperature to 325F/160C/Gas3.
. Part 3 - Filling:   

4. In a large bowl...beat the sugar with the cream cheese on medium speed. Combine until smooth. Gradually add the eggs one at the time while beating on very low. Add the sour cream, orange compote and 1 Tbsp. (15ml) of compote liquid.  Slowly beat until smoothly combined.  Don't over beat.   Pour cheese filling over the crust.
. BAKING: note: If using a' Water Bath' method...add the foiled cake pan and fill the roasting pan of hot tap water by bringing it halfway up the sides of the pan.  However, if not using a "water bath'...make sure to at least place the cake pan onto a baking sheet.  
5. BAKE for 90 minutes.   REFRAIN from opening up the oven.   With the OVEN turned OFF: Leave everything alone for 1 more hour.  Afterwards, open the oven door slightly ajar to let the rest of the heat and steam escape. Later, when oven is no longer warm (about 1 hour)...transfer cake pan to a wire rack. Once it's completely cooled, cover with plastic wrap and place it into the refrigerator. It will be ready to decorate in about 4 hours or longer is better. 
6. Place the cake pan on a serving dish. Run a wet thin metal spatula or knife around the sides of the pan and then loosen the spring form clip to release the cake. This cheesecake should be eaten in the next few days or properly plastic and foil wrapped for freezing up to one month.  
7. TOPPING decor: powdered cocoa powder and finely zested orange.

Now and then, one does need to indulge.  

With Easter right around the corner, this may just be...
the perfect sweet finish to your amazing meal.

Flavourful wishes,

Comments ... ??? ... or suggestions ... write me :o)
Claudia at:  foodessa [at] gmail [dot] com

Go HERE for more SWEET creations.

Please take note on how I bake and cook...
Here’s a 101 of sorts to make sure that there are no disappointments when trying my creations.  
Also...just so you know...feel free to increase the salt and sweet factor since I'm not high on either of them ;o)

. Use DRY cup measurements for...you guessed it...all DRY ingredients.
Anything DRY gets measured by spooning the overfilled ingredient (never shake the cup) and then level off with a flat edged tool.  Exception...Brown sugar should be packed in and leveled.
. Use LIQUID cup measurements for...all LIQUIDS that cannot be leveled like for example butter, yogurt...etc.  Measure the liquids at eye level to avoid overdoing what the recipe truly needs.
OVENS are unfortunately not created equal.  Mine is so old that it has reached many degrees off it's norm.  It's really worth investing a few dollars to test yours with an appropriate oven thermometer.  You'd be surprised how many ovens I've heard about not being where they should have been.  Before you lose any more ingredients and much time preparing a new recipe...run to the store...you'll thank me later.