Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Sarah's Rich Chocolate Cheesecake

Category: Dessserts
Difficulty Rating: Medium

Our Christmases present an opportunity for my whole cooking family to try new recipes. We pot-luck everything, and usually two or three people bring a dessert along with another course. So we have not just dessert, but a dessert buffet!

A few years ago my sister Sarah brought this chocolate cheesecake for the buffet. We all tasted it and fell on the floor, fainting at the dense, chocolate rich-ness of it.

Ingredients:

25 Oreo cookies, crushed fine
6 T butter, melted
1 1//2 pounds cream cheese, softened
1 C sugar
3 eggs
8 oz. semisweet chocolate,
melted and cooled
2 t cocoa
1 t vanilla extract
2 C sour cream

For the crust: Mix ingredients thoroughly and press into a well-buttered 10-inch springform pan. Chill. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, beat cream cheese until fluffy and smooth. Add sugar and beat in eggs one at a time. Stir in chocolate, cocoa, and vanilla, beating well after each addition. Add sour cream and continue beating until very smooth and well belnded. Pour into crust. Bake for 1 hour and 10 minutes, or until a crack forms on top. Cake may appear t be too liquid, but it will become firm when chilled. Cool to room temperature, then chill for at least 5 hours.

Note: I used 4 oz. Ghiradelli bittersweet baking chocolate and 4 oz. Nestle baking chocolate. Ghiradelli has a fine reputation for being a good bittersweet, but I find that using only bittersweet makes for a cake that isn't sweet enough. Valrhona and Callebout are also renowned, but they're too 'spensive for moi! You can always use just Nestle or Bakers  if you like...works fine! This is really great served with whipped cream on top (just whip 2 cups cream till peaks form, adding 2 T powdered sugar at the end along with 1 t vanilla extract). Orrrr, serve it on the side. I like to decorate the top with a pastry bag, but it's not necessary.

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