Prep 25 mins
Cook 1 hr 25 mins
This is a rich variation of my basic thick cheesecake recipe.
- 1 cup vanilla wafer crumbs
- 1⁄2 cup chopped almonds
- 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1⁄4 cup butter or 1⁄4 cup margarine, melted
- 24 ounces Philadelphia Cream Cheese
- 4 large eggs
- 1 1⁄2-2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon fresh orange juice
- 1 tablespoon fresh orange zest
- 1⁄4 cup amaretto liqueur
- 10 ounces semisweet chocolate, melted
- 1⁄4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1⁄4 cup miniature chocolate chip
- 1⁄3 cup heavy cream
- powdered sugar, to taste
- TO MAKE CRUST:.
- Mix all ingredients and press on bottom of 9-inch springform pan. Bake 10 minutes at 325 degrees F.
- TO MAKE CHEESECAKE:.
- After pre-baking the crust, decrease oven temperature to 275 – 300 degrees F. Place a pan of water on the lowest oven rack and spritz the top and sides of the oven with water.
- Gather all ingredients to quickly make the filling after melting the chocolate.
- Melt chocolate with cream in a small sauce pan on low heat, stirring frequently. Set aside while you make the filling.
- Beat cream cheese until fluffy on low speed. Beat eggs in, one at a time (do not overbeat). Incorporate vanilla, orange juice and zest, liquor, and melted chocolate. Finally, beat in the flour on the lowest speed of your mixer.
- Pour into prepared pan and drag a butter knife in repeated "S" shapes into the batter to lift air bubbles to the surface. Sprinkle the chocolate chip on top.
- Bake for about 1 – 1.5 hours (varies with oven temperatures), watching very closely without opening the oven door. Turn off oven when the sides look firm and the center is still wobbly. Run a knife under hot water and carefully drag around the cheesecape to loosen the sides from the pan. Leave in the oven with the door slightly propped open until the pan is cool, and then transfer to the refrigerator. Flavors peak after about 24-36 hours of refrigeration.
- After the cheesecake is cool, whip the cream, adding powdered sugar as necessary to sweeten. Using a pastry bag fitted with a large star tip, pipe the whipped cream in "stars" around the edges of the cake.