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A friend passed the recipe on to me; I don't know where she got it, but I'm told it originally came from Le Mouton Noir in California and the pastry chef was Jan Phillippi. I found that in this recipe, the quality of the chocolate is noticeable because it's so rich. Cook time is actually chill time.
- 2 -3 cups crushed graham crackers
- 8 -10 tablespoons melted butter
- 2 1⁄2 cups butter, softened (no substitutes)
- 6 tablespoons butter, softened
- 1 1⁄3 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
- 4 large eggs
- 1 lb belgium dark semi-sweet chocolate
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1⁄4 cup chopped toasted pecans (optional)
- Preheat oven to 350°.
- Mix crumbs and melted butter together.
- Press crumb mixture into a 10" springform pan.
- Bake for 10 minutes; set aside.
- Whip the 2 1/2 cups + 6 tablespoons butter (margarine, oleo, or spreads not recommended) and sugar together in a mixer until just incorporated. Do not over whip!
- Add eggs and whip again until just incorporated. Do not over whip!
- Slowly melt the chocolate with the cream. A double boiler works best, but a heavy sauce pan over low heat works as well.
- After the chocolate is melted, immediately add to butter mixture and stir by hand until smooth and the butter is completely melted.
- Add vanilla and pecans (if desired) Stir to incorporate.
- Pour into the springform pan with the prepared crust.
- Chill at least 6 hours or overnight.
- Remove at least 2 hours prior to serving and serve at room temperature.
- May be made 4-5 days ahead, but should be kept refrigerated. Store leftovers in the refrigerator.