In researching recipes for the frosting, I found out that a German chocolate cake is so named because its creator was Samuel German, a man from the US who developed the recipe for Baker’s Chocolate in the 1800s.

I thought a cheesecake version of these flavors would be fun for Valentine’s Day.

The little cake pans I used were from Target in the Valentine’s section. If you run over there this weekend, they may still have some (and if you wait ’til Saturday, they might be half price!). I only used three for my recipe, and then used mini muffin tins to use up the rest of the batter.

If you use the muffin tins, press a heaping teaspoon of the cookie crumbs into each mini muffin section, and only bake for about 5-6 minutes. (Careful, any longer and they’ll burn.) Pour the cheesecake mixture into each and bake for about 20 minutes, or until set.

german chocolate cheesecake

1 1/2 cups (200g) shortbread crumbs (I used 1 bag of Pepperidge Farm Chessmen, minus 3 cookies)
1 teaspoon cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
4 tablespoons melted unsalted butter
3 8 ounce (225g each) packages of cream cheese at room temperature
3 eggs
1 cup (220g) sugar
1/3 cup (80g) sour cream
1/4 cup (30g) unbleached all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 cup (170g) semisweet chocolate chips, melted and cooled

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees (180 degrees celsius). Mix together cookie crumbs, cocoa powder, cinnamon and butter. Press mixture into 6 heart shaped spring form pans, or one 9 inch spring form pan. Bake for 10 minutes. Let cool.


2. In a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together cream cheese and sugar. Add in eggs, one at a time. Then add in sour cream, vanilla, and flour. When everything is well-incorporated, mix in melted chocolate.


3. Pour into cake pan (or pans), and bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes if using the heart pans, or 1 hour if using the 9 inch pan. Turn off oven and let the cake(s) cool in the warm oven for 1 hour more. Refrigerate for 2 hours to let set fully.

for the frosting:

1 1/2 cups (115g) shredded coconut (sweetened or unsweetened)
1 cup (120g) chopped pecans
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 teaspoon orange zest
3 egg yolks
1 cup 200g) sugar
1 cup (220g) heavy cream
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1. In a large saute pan, toast the coconut over medium heat until slightly golden brown. Stir frequently to avoid burning. Place coconut in a large bowl. Toast pecans in the same pan until fragrant. Chop until pieces are very small, and add to the bowl of coconut. Add butter and orange zest to bowl, and set aside.

2. In a medium saucepan, stir together egg yolks, sugar, and cream. Set over medium heat, and stir constantly until the mixture comes to a slight boil. Remove from heat and add in vanilla. Pour hot mixture into the coconut and nut bowl, and stir until the butter melts. Allow to cool completely.


3. Remove cheesecake(s) from the spring form pans, and pour frosting on top to decorate.