Last weekend, I made this sinfully-rich chocolate truffle cheesecake, for one of my chocolate-loving friend's birthday (that could probably be a few of you!). I must say, I was very impressed that it came out so beautifully. And it was every bit as rich and indulgent as it looks. This was my first time making a cheesecake from scratch. The real deal. Water bath and everything. I will say, this recipe was quite involved. The entire process took a few hours from start to finish. But it was a Saturday, and I was in a baking mood. I found a recipe at foodnetwork.com. It got 5 out of 5 stars, so I figured it would be a good one. Click here for the recipe or read below. I used my new spring form pan from Williams-Sonoma, similar to this one. Having a good pan definitely contributed to my success. I added my own touch at the end, by melting semi-sweet chocolate chips and drizzling chocolate across the top, and adding chocolate chips along the outside edge. It was almost too pretty to slice! It actually reminded me of one of those decadent desserts from a nice restaurant. *Note: I now realize why a food processor is recommended for this recipe. I used a hand mixer and it was...challenging. But I managed to mix it all together. Ok, here's the recipe, should you desire to make something that will send you to chocolate-lovers heaven:
- 1 cup chocolate wafer crumbs (about 20 wafers)
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon canola oi
- 1 teaspoon instant coffee granules dissolved in 2 teaspoons hot water
- 24 ounces 1% cottage cheese (3 cups)
- 12 ounces reduced-fat cream cheese (1 1/2 cups), cut into pieces
- 1 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/4 cup cornstarch
- 1 large egg
- 2 large egg whites
- 2 tablespoons instant coffee granules dissolved in 2 tablespoons hot water
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 ounces bittersweet (not unsweetened) chocolate, melted (I used semi-sweet chocolate chips)
- 16 chocolate-covered coffee beans (optional)
Preheat oven to 325°F. Put a kettle of water on to heat for the water bath. Spray a 9-inch springform pan with cooking spray. Wrap the outside bottom of the pan with a double thickness of foil.
To prepare crust: Blend crumbs, sugar, oil and coffee in a small bowl with a fork or your fingertips. Press into the bottom of the pan.
To prepare filling: Puree cottage cheese in a food processor until very smooth, stopping once or twice to scrape down the sides. Add cream cheese, brown sugar, granulated sugar, cocoa and cornstarch. Process until smooth. Add egg, egg whites, coffee, vanilla, salt and chocolate and blend well. Pour into the crust-lined pan.
Place the cheesecake in a roasting pan and pour in enough boiling water to come 1/2 inch up the side of the springform pan.
Bake the cheesecake until the edges are set but the center still jiggles, about 50 minutes. Turn off the oven. Spray a knife with cooking spray and run it around the edge of the pan. Let stand in the oven, with the door ajar, for 1 hour. Transfer from the water bath to a wire rack; remove foil. Let cool to room temperature, about 2 hours. Refrigerate, uncovered, until chilled.
Before serving, garnish the cheesecake with chocolate-covered coffee beans, if using. (Or in my case, chocolate chips and melted chocolate).