My mother-in-law came for a visit last weekend. Her birthday was just a few weeks ago, so I wanted to make a special dessert for her. Her favorite is cheesecake.
This recipe comes with a warning.
If your 40th birthday is the next week and you'd like to lose 10 pounds first (but would settle for 5), like someone I know really, really well....
....this might not be the best choice to help you reach that goal.
I love this recipe, not only does it have a chocolatey, slightly salty and sweet crust; it has a layer of ganache (!), and is topped with delicious cheesecake.
AND, you make it ahead of time and pop it in the freezer! No baking!
The dangerous part, though...it calls to you from the freezer. I swear! "Remember me? You made me 2 days ago. Let me out into the light. EAT ME!" Well, something like that.
Sigh. Oh well, I think 40 and chubby is a good thing.
Never trust a skinny cook, right?
(modified from MarthaStewart.com)
- Vegetable oil for coating the pan
- 18 ounces chocolate wafers (about 90), finely ground (4 1/2 cups)
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
- 6 ounces (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted
- 1 teaspoon coarse salt
- 6 ounces bittersweet chocolate (preferably 61 percent), finely chopped
- 3/4 cup heavy cream
- 32 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 1 & 1/2 cups sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon coarse salt
- 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
Place chopped chocolate in a food processor. Bring cream to a simmer in a small saucepan, then pour over chocolate. Let sit several minutes, then process until smooth. Reserve a few tablespoons ganache for decorating, and spread the remainder evenly on bottom and all the way up sides of crust. Cover, and refrigerate until ready to fill.
Beat cream cheese with a mixer on medium speed until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Reduce speed to low, and slowly add sugar and salt. Raise speed to medium-high, and beat until very fluffy, about 3 minutes. Beat in lemon juice.
In a separate bowl, beat the cream with the whisk attachment until medium-stiff peaks form. Whisk 1/4 of the whipped cream into cream cheese mixture, then fold in remaining whipped cream. Pour filling into crust, and use an offset spatula to spread evenly.
Transfer reserved ganache to a pastry bag and decorate as desired. (For my mother-in-law, I wrote "Happy Birthday;" last time, I just made squiggly lines. :) That looked better.)
Cover, and freeze for at least 1 hour or overnight. Unmold cheesecake and serve immediately.