Winter is all about indulging in comfort foods, prepared with heavier sauces, creams, and of course, cheese. That also includes delectable desserts such as a rich and creamy cheesecake. Add chocolate, caramel, and pecans in this divine Chocolate Caramel Pecan Cheesecake recipe, and you’re in cheesecake heaven.
Chocolate Caramel Pecan Cheesecake
1 1/2 chocolate graham crackers
1/3 cup butter, melted
1/2 cup caramel syrup or homemade caramel (see recipe below)
1/2 cup finely chopped pecans
3 packages (250 g each) cream cheese, softened
3/4 cup sugar
1 package (225 g) semi-sweet chocolate, melted
Preheat oven to 350°F. Mix crumbs and butter together, and press firmly with the bottom of a flat glass onto bottom and up the sides of a 9-inch springform pan. Bake for 10 minutes, then, remove from oven. Pour caramel sauce over crust, and top with pecans.
In a large bowl with an electric or stand mixer, beat cream cheese and on medium speed until well blended. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing just until blended after each addition. Stir in chocolate; pour into crust.
Bake at 350°F for 50 minutes, or until centre is almost set; the centre may still appear slightly jiggly. Cool completely, then refrigerate 3 hours or overnight. Garnish with additional caramel sauce and pecans.
Tip: Bake your cheesecake in a water bath to avoid cracking. How? Wrap the outside of pan in a double layer of tin foil, covering the bottom and extending up. Place the plan into a larger roasting pan, and pout hot water into the roasting pan to about halfway up the side of the cheesecake pan.
Easy Caramel Sauce
¼ cup butter
1 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup half and half cream
1 tbsp vanilla extract
Melt butter in a saucepan. Add brown sugar and cream and whisk constantly over medium heat until sugar is dissolved. Bring to a boil and allow to boil for about three minutes. The longer you cook the sauce, the thicker it will become; keep in mind it will thicken as it cools.
Add the sauce to a small jar, and refrigerate once cooled. Makes about 1 1/2 cups caramel sauce.