snack saturday


Irish Cream Cheesecake

Crust
3/4 cup graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup regular oats (not quick cook)
1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Filling
2 cups whipping cream
6 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
1 pound cream cheese at room temperature
3/4 cup sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1/2 cup Irish Cream liqueur
2 large eggs

Brickle Almond Garnish
1 tablespoon egg white
1/2 cup whole almonds, lightly toasted
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup honey
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt


For crust, preheat oven to 350 °F and grease a 9-inch springform pan. Pulse graham crumbs, oats and brown sugar in a food processor until oats have been roughly cut.

Add melted butter and vanilla extract and pulse until an even texture. Press into bottom of prepared pan and bake for 7 minutes. Allow to cool while preparing filling.

For filling, reduce oven temperature to 325 °F. Heat cream to just below a simmer. Pour hot cream over chopped chocolate and whisk gently until smooth and set aside. In a bowl using electric beaters or with a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat cream cheese until fluffy, scraping the sides of the bowl often. While beating, slowly pour in sugar, again scraping the bowl often. Beat in cornstarch. By this time the filling should be looking a little more fluid.

Slowly pour in Irish Cream and beat in eggs, one at a time. Pour chocolate mixture into cheesecake filling and blend well. Scrape filling into pan and bake for 30 minutes. Without opening the oven door, turn off the oven and leave cheesecake in another 30 minutes. Remove, let cool to room temperature, then chill overnight.

For brickle Almond Garnish,
preheat oven to 350 °F. Whisk egg white until frothy. Add remaining ingredients and toss until almonds are evenly coated. Spread onto a parchment-lined baking sheet and toast for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally until sugar has browned. Allow to cool. Break apart almonds and chop in a food processor. Remove springform ring and bottom and place cheesecake on a serving plate. Press the ground brickle onto the sides of the cake and chill until ready to serve.

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