Yesterday we shared our visit to Cacao Drink Chocolate and now we would like to share the recipe we made in November with the delicious chocolate we brought home. Every year when my birthday rolls around, I always have only one request: that my birthday cake be a cheesecake. Cheesecake is one of my all time guilty pleasure, and if given the opportunity and permittance my waistline wouldn’t triple, I would eat it every single day. Every year since I was about eight years old, I would have my Mom make me a homemade, no bake cheesecake made with graham cracker crust, a combo of cool whip, cream cheese and sugar filling with a fruit preserve topping. Most often it was a can of syrupy cherries in a can.
Jade has taken up this tradition and has made me cheesecakes for the past few years as well but in a much more gourmet manner. Except this year, she said she would up the ante by making it a baked chocolate cheesecake. Chocolate is yet another one of my all time guilty pleasures, so I was very pleased to hear this news.
I was so thrilled about my cheesecake this year that I even took part in making it. I had never baked a cheesecake before nor had I made one in a springform pan. Springform pans are such novel little gadgets. They allow a creation to be even more delicious looking than if you made it in any other kind of baking dish. When making this style of cheesecake you have to put the spring form pan into a pot or an oven safe dish deep enough to hold water to about the middle of the spring form pan. The water evens out the cooking temperature around the contents in the spring form pan so it cooks all the way through. This can be really tricky, because a spring form pan isn’t water tight, and you have to jerry-rig your pan with tin foil so water doesn’t seep through and ruin your crust on the bottom. If you have extra wide tinfoil so you can simply wrap it around the bottom about mid way up the pan, your’re set. But if you have standard size tinfoil that you get from any grocery store, you’ll have to MacGyver that bad boy.
We made a fairly small cheesecake since we are just two people. We used a 6 in. springform pan, but if you are serving for a party and have a larger springform pan (say a 10 in. pan,) you can double the recipe.
Ingredients for Crust:
1 cup Chocolate Cookie Crumbs (we used gluten free)
3 Tbsp Unsalted Butter
Ingredients for Filling:
16 oz. Cream Cheese
1/2 cup Granualted Sugar
pinch of salt
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
2 Eggs at Room Temperature
1/3 cup Sour Cream
1/3 cup Heavy Whipping Cream
Ingredients for Truffle Ganache:
2/3 cup Heavy Whipping Cream
8 oz. Dark Chocolate
Edible Gold Dust
Spring Form Pan
6 in. Deep Pan
Making the Crust
Its best to start this endeavor by making the crust. Preheat oven on 350 degrees. Melt the butter down and mix that in with the cookie crumbs until it is thoroughly combined. Spread the mixture into the bottom of the springform pan to form an even layer. Set the spring form pan on a cookie sheet and place it in the oven for 10 minutes. Remove pan from heat and allow it to come to room temperature.
Making the Cheesecake Filling
To make the cake mixture, start by getting a large bowl and put the cream cheese into it. Beat the cream cheese with an electric mixer until it is smooth and light, about 5 minutes or so. Slowly add in the sugar, then the salt and vanilla extract until it is well combined with the cream cheese. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula. Now add in the eggs, mixing one at a time. Scrape down the sides again. Slowly mix in the cream and sour cream until all is thoroughly combined into a slightly runny mixture.
Preheat the oven on 325 degrees. Cover the bottom of the cooled springform pan with foil about half way or more up the side of the pan. Be sure to get it water tight about half way up to prevent leaks getting to your crust. Pour the mixture onto the crust in the springform pan, it should come to just about the top of the pan. Set springform pan into deep pan and fill with hot water to about the middle of the springform pan. Place this all slowly into the oven and then let bake for 90 minutes.
When time is up, take out of oven and let springform pan cool in the pan of water for an hour. Then remove springform pan from bath, remove the tinfoil, and chill in the refrigerator while you make your ganache.
Making the Truffle Ganache
Chop chocolate up into small pieces and place into a medium metal or glass mixing bowl. Pour cream in a small sauce pan and bring to a boil. Once cream boils, immediately poor over the chocolate and whisk until it become glassy and smooth. Pour ganache over cheesecake in the springform pan. Let sit in fridge for up to one hour allowing ganache to thicken. When ganache is firm, gently pop the springform pan open to reveal the delicious layers that have been created. Lastly, brush the top of the ganache with a gold dust to create a glowing golden shimmer.
Cut the cake and enjoy!