Chocolate Cheesecake

If you love chocolate and you love cheesecake, what could be better than this rich and indulgent creation? Many food writers say things like, “it’s very rich, so you only need a small slice”. What nonsense, you’ll want a big slice. I promise.

Serves: 10 – 12 (or fewer if they all go for “big slices”.)

Time: Preparation 80 – 90 mins; Oven time 90 – 100 mins

Difficulty: Reasonably easy

Ingredients

    BASE
  • 80g butter
  • 40g golden caster sugar
  • 180g Bourbon biscuits, finely crushed (or chocolate digestives)
  • CAKE
  • 110g dark chocolate
  • 280g full fat soft cheese
  • 3 eggs, separated
  • 60g soft brown sugar
  • 40g plain flour
  • 160ml soured cream
  • 60g caster sugar
  • TOPPING
  • 230g granulated sugar
  • 155ml water
  • 180g dark chocolate, broken into small pieces
  • 60g butter
  • plus any chosen decorations

Directions

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 160C/fan 140C/325F/Gas 3. Grease and fully line a 20cm/8” round cake tin.
  2. Blitz the biscuits in a food processor or bash with rolling pin. Melt the butter and sugar in a saucepan over a low heat. Stir in the biscuit pieces. Press this mixture over the base of the tin. Put in fridge to chill.
  3. Break up the chocolate and melt in a bain marie (or in the micro-wave using short blasts and stirring well). Leave to cool.
  4. Soften the cheese in a large mixing bowl. Beat in the egg yolks, soft brown sugar, flour, soured cream and melted chocolate.
  5. In a clean, grease free, bowl whisk the egg whites until stiff, then whisk in the caster sugar. Stir two tablespoons into the cheese mixture then carefully fold in the rest. Spoon the mixture into the tin and level the surface.
  6. Bake in pre-heated oven for 90 – 105 minutes (or until firm but still a bit wobbly in the middle.) Turn off the oven and leave the cheesecake inside, open the door slightly and leave the cheesecake to cool for at least an hour, ideally longer.
  7. To make the topping, put the sugar and water into a saucepan and stir over a gentle heat until the sugar has dissolved. Bring to the boil and boil gently for 2 – 3 minutes until the syrup coats the back of a wooden spoon. Remove from the heat and add the chocolate in finely broken pieces. Beat to melt the chocolate. Add the butter and beat further, until the frosting is thick, smooth and glossy.
  8. If necessary, run a round-bladed knife round the inside edge of the tin to loosen the cheesecake, then carefully ease it out of the tin. Coat the top and sides with the topping, either smoothly or in swirls as you choose. Add any decoration. Chill for 2 – 3 hours before serving.

Don’t feel you have to make white chocolate decorations or dip strawberries in chocolate. They’re OK, but this cheesecake can stand on it’s own two feet. (That’s not a very good analogy, but you know what I mean.)