Saturday, September 25, 2010

Decadent Chocolate Cheesecake with Chocolate Walnut Crust

Last night we indulged in a decadent double chocolate cheesecake for a birthday celebration. I have been asked many times for the recipe so at long last, here it is!

I have so many recipes to keep track of that I try to keep things simple when I can. After trying several different chocolate cheesecake recipes and never remembering which one I liked best, I now use my basic cheesecake recipe and alter it for variations by adding chocolate, or lemon, or espresso powder (cappuccino cheesecake!) when I want a new flavor. So this chocolate cheesecake is very similar to the Lemon Cheesecake recipe I have on this blog. For more cheesecake tips and step by step photos, check out that lemon cheesecake post.


Decadent Chocolate Cheesecake with Chocolate Walnut Crust
Chocolate Walnut Crust:
1 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2 Tablespoons good quality cocoa (or dutch processed)
3 tablespoon sugar
a pinch of salt
1/2 cup cold butter cut into pieces

Press into a ten inch spring form pan lined with parchment paper and bake in a preheated oven at 375 degrees for 12 minutes. Remove from oven and cool while you mix the batter. Turn the oven to 325 degrees and place a large pan of hot water on the bottom rack of the oven.

Batter:
2 1/4 pounds cream cheese
2 cups sugar
1/3 cup good quality cocoa (or dutch processed)
2 teaspoons vanilla
6 whole eggs

Beat the cream cheese. Mix together the sugar and cocoa powder and gradually add to the cheese, beating well and scraping the bowl. Add the vanilla then the eggs one at a time beating well after each. Scrape the sides of the bowl to ensure that all the cream cheese is flavored with the chocolate and that there are no large lumps. Pour into the pan. Put the cheesecake on the oven rack directly above the water pan. Bake at 325 degrees for one hour.

Leaving the cheesecake in the oven, turn off the oven and prop open the door.
Let the cheesecake remain in the oven another thirty minutes. This step will help your cheesecake to cool slowly enough that it won't crack. Remove and let cool completely then cover and refrigerate for at least three hours (or overnight) before removing it from pan for serving.


P.S. This makes a large ten inch cheesecake that serves 20. I have halved the recipe and used a six inch spring form pan with good results. That size will serve 8-10

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