I’ve had this recipe on the docket for WEEKS. Aching to share this one with all of you, but my technology had a different plan. My laptop decided that turning on was something it simply did not want to do anymore. Long story short, I had to either invest money into a new laptop or get handy and fix my old laptop. I chose the former, it seemed much more cost effective. I can be handy outside the kitchen when I want to be. I’m proud to say that we are back up and running (for now).
On to more important topics like this Triple Chocolate Espresso Cheesecake. I love this cheesecake. It’s rich, decadent, and really makes the crowd go wow. I’m a pretty big chocolate fan and an even bigger espresso fan. These combined make one of my favorite desserts I’ve ever created. Plus, it was a huge hit everywhere I took it. Family asked for the recipe. Well fam, here you go.
I have to be honest with you, when I say I’ve been dying to share this with you for weeks, I really mean months. I created this back in December for a Christmas gathering with my brother, sister-in-law, niece, and my sister-in-laws brother. The food that night was AMAZING. I’m pretty fortunate to be surrounded by family that can cook. My husband and I were treated to the best prime rib. It was incredibly tender and juicy and cooked perfectly medium rare. I’m drooling just thinking about it. I kid you not, I have had dreams about this prime rib. It was so good.
My sole job for the evening was to supply the dessert. For prime rib I will do just about anything. Baking for prime rib is like heaven. I’m pretty sure I’ve said this before, baking is my happy place. If I could do anything I would open a bakery where people would drink coffee and espresso and eat tasty pastries all while hanging out with their pupper. All the puppers would play and their humans would watch on, drinking coffee, reading a book, consuming a hearty piece of Triple Chocolate Espresso Cheesecake. This would be their happy place, because it would be my happy place. Food and dogs. What else do you need in life?
I know, I’ve gone off on a tangent. As I said, it was my job to supply the dessert. It’s winter so I wanted something rich and comforting. Also, I wanted to make sure that the dessert would compliment the main course. Hit the nail on the head with this one. I don’t have any prep pictures because I wasn’t entirely certain how this was going to turn out. A week or so prior I had set out to create another cheesecake for a holiday party we hosted. This cheesecake ended in disaster. Albeit thoroughly wrapping the springform pan in foil, water still managed to weasel it’s way in to through the foil and then into the pan. The result: soggy cheesecake. The only suitable place for this creation was in the trash. Suffice it say, when I started the Triple Chocolate Espresso Cheesecake I was still a little jaded, but I refused to be beaten.
I was tasting each element as I went and was so excited and hopeful that this cheesecake was going to be my crowning achievement, but I was afraid that if I snapped pictures I would jinx myself.
Things to keep in mind as you’re making this: room temperature cream cheese is essential. Don’t cheap out on the chocolate. Good, thick aluminum foil and a strong springform pan will be life savers. Lastly, patience is key. You absolutely cannot rush a good cheesecake. It takes time. Cheesecakes aren’t that hard to make but where we often fail is trying to rush the process. You need to let it sit in the water bath in the oven for a while after turning it off. It needs to sit in the fridge before you release it from the pan. You HAVE to wait to eat it with the guests you’re creating it for even though it will be incredibly tempting to go all Gollum on it. Cowered in a dark corner, just you, a fork and precious. Mine, my own, my precious.
Without further ado, the recipe..
Triple Chocolate Espresso Cheesecake
- 2 cups Graham Cracker Crumbs
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup cocoa powder
- 6 tbsp melted butter
- 24oz Room temp Cream Cheese
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup cocoa powder
- 2tsp vanilla
- 3tbsp Instant Espresso
- 3/4 cup heavy cream
- 10oz dark chocolate chips
- 4 eggs
Chocolate Espresso Whipped Cream Icing
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar
- 1/4 cup cocoa powder
- 1 1/2 tbsp instant espresso
- 4oz Dark Chocolate Chips
- 1tbsp butter
- Cocoa powder for garnish
- Raspberries for garnish
- Preheat oven to 350º
- Throughly mix graham cracker crumbs, sugar, cocoa powder, and melted butter. You want a sand like consistency
- Pour graham cracker mixture into an un-greased springform pan. Firmly press down using the bottom of a measuring cup
- Bake crust for 8 minutes on the middle rack. Remove and allow to cool
- In a standing mixer with the paddle attachment, beat the room temperature cream cheese and sugar on medium speed until creamy. Add cocoa powder and espresso and beat until just combined
- Fill a pot with water and place a glass bowl over top. Be sure the water does not touch the bottom of the glass bowl. Add chocolate chips to bowl. Turn burner on to medium low, constantly stirring chips until completely melted. Once chips are melted stir in heavy cream. Remove from heat
- Add chocolate mixture and vanilla to mixing bowl. Beat until combined.
- Add eggs 1 at a time. Do not over mix. As with the previous steps mix only until combined. If batter is over mixed it can cause the cheesecake to deflate and crack
- Bring a large kettle of water to a boil
- While the water is preparing to boil, wrap springform pan with aluminum foil. Make sure foil comes up high enough on the sides of the pan to prevent water from seeping in
- Pour cheesecake batter over graham cracker crumbs crust and smooth out with spatula
- Set the springform pan in a large baking dish or roasting pan
- Carefully pour boiling water into roasting pan, making sure to not splash any into the cheesecake or into the aluminum foil surrounding the springform pan
- Transfer roasting pan to the oven and bake for 65-70 minutes. If it appears the top is baking too fast, tent the springform pan with aluminum foil
- After 65-70 minutes the center of the cheesecake should still be slightly wobbly
- Turn oven off, crack open the oveb door and allow cheesecake to remain in the water bath and oven for about an hour
- After an hour remove cheesecake from water bath and allow to cool to room temperature. Once cheesecake is completely cooled refrigerate for 3-4 hours before garnishing
- For the chocolate espresso whipped cream icing: Add heavy cream, powdered sugar, cocoa powder and instant espresso in a standing mixer. Using the whisk attachment, whisk on medium-high until heavy cream forms stiff peaks. Spoon into a icing bag with an open star pastry tip
- Remove completely cooled cheesecake from fridge and carefully loosen edges of the cheesecake from the springform pan with a knife, then remove the rim
- Carefully pipe chocolate espresso whipped cream frosting in little circles on the edge on the cheesecake. Top each peak with a raspberry
- Dust with cocoa powder
- For the chocolate ganache: In a small microwavable bowl, melt chocolate and butter 30 seconds as a time. Stirring in between. Be sure to not over microwave or else the chocolate will burn and will loose sheen once hardened. The goal is to have the chocolate be a smooth consistency that drizzles off the top of a spoon
- You can either pipe the chocolate ganache using a pastry bag for a more controlled design. Or dip a spoon into the ganache and drizzle over top cheesecake
- Set cheesecake back in fridge for 30 minutes to allow chocolate ganache to set