Thursday, June 14, 2012

New World Cheesecake

A new ‘n improved version of Chocolate Pinon Cheesecake. Ingredients Crust 2 cups Graham Cracker crust mix 2 T sugar 1/2 cup butter or margarine (1 stick) Filling 1 - 2 T butter 4 squares baker’s chocolate 3 8-oz packages cream cheese or Neufchatel cheese 2 cups sugar 2 t chile powder ¼ t ground red pepper 5 eggs ¼ cup pinon nuts, plus more for garnish Method Thaw the cream or Neufchatel cheese an hour or two before beginning the process. Preheat oven 350 F. Grate the baker’s chocolate into a saucepan. Add 1 – 2 T butter and put it on the lowest heat possible. While you are doing the rest of the recipe, stir occasionally. For crust, mix Graham Cracker crust mix and sugar in a small bowl. Melt butter, stir it into the dry mixture, then press the resulting mixture into a cheesecake pan with your hands. Cover the pan and chill the crust until you are ready to add the filling. For the filling, beat together the cream cheese (I find it helpful to cube it first), the sugar, the chile powder and the ground red pepper until the mixture is light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating thoroughly after each addition. Add the melted chocolate and beat until it is thoroughly mixed. Fold in the pinon nuts. Pour the filling mixture into the crust and smooth to make it even. Bake at 350 F for 55 minutes or until the center is just firm to the touch. The cake will puff up in the oven, then slowly settle as it cools. Cool to room temperature, then chill the cake before serving. Top each slice with a squirt of Hershey’s Semi-Sweet chocolate syrup and additional pinon nuts.

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