Chocolate Peppermint Cheesecake
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- To make crust: Crush graham crackers with a rolling pin to obtain 1 3/4 cups. Add melted butter and sugar and combine well. Press onto bottom of a 9 inch diameter spring form pan and place in oven for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and reduce oven temperature to 325°F.
- Place springform pan on 3 layers of aluminum foil and wrap outside of pan tightly with foil. Ensure that no water could penetrate thru foil. Place in a roasting pan and set aside.
- For chocolate layer, blend cream cheese and sugar on lowest speed, alternatively mix by using a hand held spatula until no lumps remain. Scrape bowl well. Add one egg at a time waiting for previous added egg to be fully incorporated and mixture shows no lumps. Scrape bowl and beater between additions. Add sour cream and vanilla.
- Place chocolate in a bowl and melt over very low simmering water and stir until just melted. Add to above and combine well, pour batter into springform pan.
- For mint layer blend cream cheese and sugar on lowest speed, alternatively mix by using a hand held spatula until no lumps remain. Scrape bowl well. Add one egg at a time waiting for previous added egg to be fully incorporated and mixture shows no lumps. Scrape bowl and beater between additions. Add sour cream, peppermint and green food color.
- Spoon mint layer on top of chocolate layer. (Don't pour.)
- Pour water into roasting pan about 1-inch high and place into oven.
- Bake until center of cake no longer trembles when tapping sides of pan, about 90 minutes, but it could take up to 2 hours depending on temperature of cheesecake batter.
- Allow to cool at room temperature for 30 minutes and place in refrigerator overnight.
- Run a sharp knife around edge and bottom of cheesecake and place on a serving platter.
- Prepare ganache and while still warm pour half of ganache onto cheesecake. Serve remaining ganache reheated on side.
- Whip cream and sugar until stiff peaks form, place in a piping bag fitted with a plain pastry tube and pipe a circle in center.
- Chop chocolate mint chocolates in 4 pieces and place in center of cake. Sprinkle with powdered sugar.