Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Triple Chocolate Heaven

Do you dream of chocolate desserts?  I'll be the first to admit that I have a sweet tooth around anything containing the word chocolate. Chocolate chips. Chocolate cupcakes. Chocolate cheesecake.  I'm not sure that I ever invested the time in making a "real" cheesecake.  Cheesecake seemed labor intensive and let's be honest...a little hard.

Never one to back away from a challenge in the kitchen, I decided to go big or go home. If I was going to try my hand at making a cheesecake, it needed to be full of chocolate from the bottom to the top.  I decided to roll with a gluten free chocolate cream cookie crust, top it with a dark chocolate cheesecake filling brimming with chocolate chips and it obviously needed chocolate ganache.  This cheesecake is decadent and while it's perfect for impressing a crowd, it's also perfect for binge watching House of Cards in your pajamas.

If my kitchen walls could talk: Feeling extra decadent? Sprinkle chocolate ribbons on top of the ganache after it sets.  In a time crunch? Leave off the chocolate ganache and drizzle each slice with hot fudge and mini chocolate chips. This cheesecake is a little labor intensive, so plan accordingly.

Triple Chocolate Cheesecake

Ingredients - Cheesecake

1 package chocolate gluten-free sandwich cookies
2 tbsp butter
24 oz cream cheese
1 cup sugar
1/2 tbsp vanilla
6 ounces semi-sweet baking chocolate
3 eggs
1/2 cup milk chocolate chips

Ingredients - Chocolate Ganache 

3/4 cup almond milk
1/2 tbsp butter
12 ounces chocolate chips

1. Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees fahrenheit. Crush cookies in small food processor, melt butter in the microwave, combine with cookies. Press into bottom of a 9 inch springform pan until uniform. Bake for 8 minutes. Set aside.
2. Beat cream cheese, sugar and vanilla in a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment.  Break chocolate into pieces and set in a small bowl,  microwave in 30 second increments, stirring between each set, until melted. Add to cream cheese mixture, beat to combine.
3. Add each egg, 1 at a time, beating until fully incorporated. Fold chocolate chips into batter with a spatula. Bake for 45-50 minutes until center is set - the majority of the cheesecake should be solid, but the middle may jiggle slightly.  Refrigerate for at least 8 hours or overnight.
4. Heat almond milk and butter in a small saucepan over low heat. Add chocolate chips, stirring until smooth.
5. Pour ganache over cheesecake. Refrigerate until set.

What's your favorite cheesecake?

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