This Chocolate Covered Strawberry Cheesecake recipe is made with a strawberry cheesecake filling and chocolate Oreo crust, all covered in chocolate ganache and chocolate covered strawberries!
1. Preheat oven to 325°F (163°C). Line a 9-inch (23cm) springform pan with parchment paper in the bottom and grease the sides.
2. Combine the crust ingredients in a small bowl. Press the mixture into the bottom and up the sides of the springform pan.
3. Bake the crust for 10 minutes, then set aside to cool.
4. Cover the outsides of the pan with aluminum foil so that water from the water bath cannot get in (see how I prepare a pan for a water bath). Set prepared pan aside.
5. To make the cheesecake filling, add the strawberries to a food processor or blender and puree until smooth, then strain through a fine mesh sieve to discard the seeds.
6. Add the puree to a medium sized saucepan and cook over medium heat. Allow the mixture to come to a boil and continue to boil, stirring consistently to keep it from burning, until it has thickened and reduce to 1/2 cup, about 20 minutes. To measure, pour the puree into a measuring cup. If it’s more than 1/2 cup, add it back to the pan and continue to cook it.
7. When the puree has thickened and reduced, pour into a small bowl and allow to cool to at least room temperature. This strawberry mixture can be made ahead, if you like.
8. When ready to proceed with the filling, set oven temperature to 300°F (148°C).
9. In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese, sugar and flour on low speed until well completely combined and smooth. Be sure to use low speed to reduce the amount of air added to the batter, which can cause cracks. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.
10. Add the sour cream and mix on low speed until well combined.
11. Add the strawberry puree and strawberry extract and mix on low speed until well combined.
12. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing slowly to combine after each addition. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed to make sure everything is well combined.
13. Stir in the red food color to your desired shade of pink.
14. Pour the cheesecake batter evenly into the crust.
15. Place the springform pan inside another larger pan. Fill the outside pan with enough warm water to go about halfway up the sides of the springform pan. The water should not go above the top edge of the aluminum foil on the springform pan.
16. Bake for 1 hour 10 minutes. The center should be set, but still jiggly.
17. Turn off the oven and leave the door closed for 30 minutes. The cheesecake will continue to cook, but slowly begin to cool as well.
18. Crack the door of the oven for 30 minutes to allow the cheesecake to continue to cool slowly. This process helps prevent cracking.
19. Remove the cheesecake from the oven and water bath wrapping and refrigerate until firm, 5-6 hours or overnight.
20. When the cheesecake is cool and firm, remove from the springform pan and set on a serving plate.
21. To make the chocolate ganache, put the chocolate chips in a heat proof bowl.
22. Microwave the heavy whipping cream until it just begins to boil, then pour it over the chocolate chips. Allow it to sit for 2-3 minutes, then whisk until smooth.
23. Pour the ganache onto the cheesecake and spread into an even layer. Allow to cool and firm.
24. To make the whipped cream, add the heavy whipping cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract to a large mixer bowl and whip on high speed until stiff peaks form. Add some pink icing color to your desired shade of pink.
25. Pipe the whipped cream around the edge of the cheesecake, then top with chocolate covered strawberries. The fresh chocolate covered strawberries are best added fresh before serving, since they can spoil more quickly.
26. Refrigerate cheesecake until ready to serve. Cheesecake is best when stored well covered and eaten within 3-4 days.
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