Killer Chocolate Cheesecake
1 lb. bittersweet or semi-sweet chocolate, chopped
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
3 8-oz. packages cream cheese, at room temperature
1 cup sugar
4 large eggs
pinch of salt
1 1/2 cups sour cream, at room temperature
2 tsp. vanilla extract
*1 cup semi-sweet and/or milk chocolate, chopped
*1/4 or 1/2 cup semi-sweet mini chocolate morsels (Nestle makes these)
With the rack in the middle of the oven, preheat to 350 F degrees. Butter a 9-inch springform pan and wrap the outside tightly with heavy duty aluminum foil. Have a roasting pan ready, and put a kettle of water on to boil for a water bath.
Filling: Melt the chocolate with the butter in a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of about 1 1/2 inches of nearly simmering water, whisking until smooth. Whisk in the cocoa powder. Remove bowl from the heat and let the mixture cool to room temperature.
Beat the cream cheese and sugar with an electric mixer, beginning on low speed and increasing to medium-high, in a medium deep bowl until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in the salt. Beat in the chocolate mixture just until smooth, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a spatula as necessary. Add the sour cream and vanilla and beat until smooth, scraping down the sides again.
*Sprinkle 1/2 cup of the 1-cup of chopped chocolate evenly on the crust. Transfer filling on top of this, about halfway full. Sprinkle the rest of the 1-up of chopped chocolate on top of the filling. Transfer the rest of the filling to the pan. Top the filling with an even sprinkling of the mini-morsels.
Bake for 45 minutes, or until the center is almost set but still slightly jiggly; do not overbake--the cheesecake will firm as it cools. Remove the roasting pan from the water bath and let cool completely on a wire rack, then remove the foil and refrigerate the cheesecake, loosely covered, until thoroughly chilled, at least 12 hours overnight.
To serve: let the cheesecake stand at room temperature for 20 minutes. Remove the pan sides, smooth the sides of the cheesecake with a table knife, and cut into wedges.
I like to leave the cheesecake in the oven for around 55 minutes, but my oven is gas, and it takes a little longer to cook.
I also do not smooth the sides of the cheesecake before serving, but I like the home-made look.
The reason I put chunks of chocolate on top of the crust and in the middle, and put the mini-morsels on top is because I love chocolate, and it's great to have the texture of the cheesecake vary. The original recipe doesn't have any chocolate chunks or morsels in it.
I also love the crust, so I added some to the recipe. The original recipe calls for 9 ounces of chocolate wafers, which is one package of chocolate wafers.
Pairs Well With
I adapted this recipe from Lori Longbotham's book, Luscious Chocolate Desserts. My modifications are indicated by an asterisk(*).