Yes, you heard me. Chocolate. Mousse. Cheesecake. Need I say more?
Last Friday was my boyfriend’s birthday and when I brought up the idea of baking him a chocolate mousse cheesecake, his mouth started watering. I took that as a “YES!” and just went with it. If you’ve ever been to the Cheesecake Factory, they have a chocolate mousse cheesecake which is just pure bliss. I took that brilliant idea and made my own version of it, which turned out amazing! Be careful, however, because even though this cake is fairly dense, it will give you one hell of a sugar rush!
The combination of chocolate mousse and cheesecake is just indescribable! Don’t get scared with the ingredients-I promise, it’s a fairly easy dessert :). It’s just a bit labor intensive but it’s so worth it in the end! I made the cheesecake portion the day before and made the mousse and ganache the day of the birthday–highly recommend that way since the cheesecake needs at least 4-5 hours to set (overnight preferred).
Oh, did I mention this cake has a chocolate cookie crust? Win!
Update: Another picture of the cheesecake the boyfriend took. Did I mention he is a huge Star Wars fan? Surprise surprise :p
- 36 chocolate sandwich cookies (I used Back to Nature’s Classic Creme but you can use Oreos)
- 4 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
- 2 packets (8oz) plain cream cheese, room temperature
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 2 tbsp all-purpose flour
- 1/2 tbsp vanilla extract (don’t use the imitation one)
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 5 tbsp milk (I used 2% but you can use whole milk)
Middle Portion-Chocolate Mousse
- 3.5 oz semi-sweet chocolate, chopped
- 1 tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 tbsp granulated sugar
- 2 egg yolks, room temperature
- pinch of salt
- 1/2 cup + 1 tbsp heavy cream, cold
Top Portion-Chocolate Ganache
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 5 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- In a freezer bag, crush the cookies until they’re crumbled pretty finely. Don’t get too finicky if it’s not perfectly grounded. Yes, you may use a food processor to do this bit. I just didn’t want to clean the food processor 😉
- Add the melted butter to the cookie crumbles and mix until it’s all combined
- Pour the cookie crumbles into a greased (I used cooking spray) springform pan and press it evenly on the bottom and a bit up the sides.
- Stick the pan into the freezer for about 30 minutes to set it. In the mean time, you can make the filling portion
- In a bowl, mix the vanilla extract, flour and sour cream. Set aside.
- In another bowl, with a wooden spoon, cream the cream cheese and sugar together. You can use a hand-mixer or food processor but if you allowed the cream cheese to sit at room temperature, it’s pretty easy to cream with a spoon.
- Add the milk to the cream cheese mixture and whisk to combine. Make sure to whisk until the mixture is smooth and free from cream cheese lumps
- Whisk one egg at a time to the cream cheese mixture
- Add the sour cream mixture to the cream cheese and whisk to combine. Don’t over mix the mixture as we don’t want to add air bubbles into it.
- Pour the mixture into the springform pan and place the pan onto a sheet pan. Tap the pan gently to remove any air bubbles.
- Place the pan in the middle rack of a preheated 325F oven and bake for 45 minutes. Whatever you do, do NOT open the oven door to check it.
- After 45 minutes, turn off the oven and let the cheesecake cool in the oven for 4-5 hours. What this does is help the cheesecake retain moisture and keep it from cracking. No water bath needed!
- After 4-5 hours, remove the pan from the oven, cover with cling wrap and place in the fridge to let it set overnight.
Chocolate Mousse Portion
- Melt the chocolate and butter in a double boiler. Mix until the chocolate is shiny and smooth. Set aside
- In another bowl, add the egg yolks and sugar and place it on the double boiler. Whisk until the egg yolks turn a pale yellow, a bit foamy, and a little warm to the touch.
- Add the egg yolk mixture and pinch of salt to the chocolate mixture and mix until it’s all combined. Set aside until the chocolate is at room temperature
- In another bowl, add the COLD heavy cream and whisk until it forms soft peaks. You want it to be almost to whipped cream texture.
- Once the chocolate is at room temperature, add 1/3 of the whipped cream to the chocolate and fold it in to lighten the mixture with a rubber spatula
- Fold in the next 1/3 mixture until it’s combined and then fold in the final 1/3 of it. If there’s still some white streaks, don’t fret about it.
- Remove the springform pan from the fridge and add the mousse portion to the cheesecake. Spread it evenly, until the top portion is covered.
- Cover it with cling wrap again and place it in the fridge for 3-4 hours or until the mousse is set.
Chocolate Ganache Portion
- Place the chocolate and vanilla extract in a small bowl. Set aside.
- In a saucepan, heat the heavy cream until it’s about to come to a boil
- Immediately pour the heated cream over the chocolate mixture. Let it stand for 1 minute to allow to chocolate to melt
- Whisk the mixture until shiny and smooth. Once mixed, let it stand for 15 minutes to cool it down a bit
- With an offset spatula, spread the ganache evenly over the cheesecake. Work fairly quickly because the cold cheesecake will cause the ganache to firm up.
- Gently release the springform pan from the cheesecake.
- Cut it with a sharp knife and enjoy!
- Make sure to tightly cover up the cheesecake with cling wrap before placing it in the fridge.