Grazie Ali, da Gimme some oven.
PREP: 15 MIN – COOK: 1 HOUR 10 MIN – TOTAL: 1 HOUR 25 MIN
1 1/2 cups chocolate graham cracker (or chocolate cookie) crumbs
1/3 cup powdered (confectioner’s) sugar
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 cup (half a stick) butter, melted
3 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened (I used 1/3 less fat)
1 1/4 cups white sugar
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
3 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup Bailey’s (or other Irish cream liqueuor)
CHOCOLATE GANACHE INGREDIENTS (OPTIONAL):
1/2 cup heavy cream (or half and half)
4 ounces dark chocolate
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a large bowl, mix together the cookie crumbs, confectioners’ sugar and 1/3 cup cocoa. Add melted butter and stir until well mixed. Pat into the bottom of a 9-inch well-greased springform pan. Bake in preheated oven for 10 minutes; set aside. Increase oven temperature to 450 degrees.
In a large bowl, combine cream cheese, white sugar, 1/4 cup cocoa and flour. Beat at medium speed until blended and smooth. (Try not to over-mix!) Add eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Blend in the sour cream and Irish cream liqueur; mixing on low speed until blended. Pour filling over baked crust.
Optional: To prevent cracking in the cheesecake, I’m a big fan of water baths! Just fill a 9×13 (or whatever size) glass pan halfway with water, and place it on the bottom rack while the oven preheats, and then while the cheesecake cooks.
Place the cheesecake in the oven on the shelf above the water bath, and bake at 450 degrees for 10 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 250 degrees, and continue baking for 60 minutes.
With a knife, loosen cake from rim of pan. Let cool, then remove the rim of pan. Chill for a few hours before serving.
Optional: To prepare the ganache, place the chocolate chips in a bowl. Then heat the cream (or half and half) in a small saucepan over medium-low heat until it is almost boiling. Remove from heat, and pour over the chocolate chips and let sit for 30 seconds. Then stir until the chocolate chips have melted and are mixed in well. Pour over the top of the cheesecake, and sprinkle with chocolate chips or chocolate shavings if you’d like.