What’s For Dinner?
Cookies 'n' Cream Cheesecake
(First star is lowest, fourth star is highest)
In the Kitchen With . . . Laura Poe, Atlanta
Nominated by children Kathleen, Emily and Matt Poe:
"Our mother, Laura Poe, is a fantastic cook year-round, but come December, her considerable talent in the kitchen is unparalleled. You haven't lived until you've been to the Poe Christmas party. Last year there were more than 15 kinds of cheesecake offered at our Christmas party -- and that's not counting the cookies, cakes or bar cookies. Mom makes everything from scratch (except for the gingerbread men and sugar cookies - those are Dad's responsibility) - -and she does it while working a full-time job."
Hands on time: 45 minutes Total time: 8 hours Serves: 16
For the crust
1 1/2 cups cream-filled chocolate sandwich cookie crumbs (about 16 cookies)
3 tablespoons melted butter
1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
For the cheesecake
4 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, room temperature
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar, divided
1/3 cup whipping cream
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons vanilla extract, divided
1 1/2 cups coarsely chopped cream-filled chocolate sandwich cookies (about 16 cookies)
1 (16-ounce) carton sour cream
For the glaze
1 cup whipping cream
1 1/4 cups semisweet chocolate morsels
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
To prepare the crust: In a medium bowl, combine the cookie crumbs, melted butter, brown sugar and cinnamon. Press the mixture evenly on the bottom of a lightly greased 10-inch springform pan. Bake for 5 minutes; set aside.
To prepare the filling: Beat the cream cheese at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth. Gradually add 1 1/4 cups granulated sugar, beating well. Add 1/3 cup whipping cream, the flour and 1 teaspoon vanilla; beat well. Add the eggs one at a time, beating after each addition just until the yellow disappears. Pour two-thirds of the batter over the cooked crust. Top with the cookie pieces; pour in the remaining batter. Tap the cake a few times on the countertop to eliminate any air pockets. Bake for 1 hour.
Combine the sour cream, the remaining 1/4 cup granulated sugar and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract. Spread evenly over the hot cake and return it to the oven for 5 minutes. Turn off the oven, and allow the cake to cool to room temperature in the closed oven.
For the glaze: Combine whipping cream and the chocolate morsels in the top of a double boiler or a saucepan; stir over low heat just until the chocolate melts. Stir in the vanilla. Allow the mixture to cool slightly, then pour it over the cooled cheesecake. Refrigerate until serving time.
To serve, run a sharp knife around the inside of the pan to loosen cake from sides before releasing the spring.