- 3 packages full fat cream cheese, 8 oz. each
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon almond extract
- 3 eggs
- 1/3 cup brewed espresso (I usually get 3 shots at the local coffee shop)
- 2 cups Oreo crumbs (cream and all)
- 5 tablespoons butter, melted
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 3/4 cups chocolate chips (I use semi-sweet)
- few mini chocolate chips, for topping, optional
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- Pulse the Oreos or similar chocolate cookies in a blender or food processor until they are very fine. Measure out 2 cups of crumbs. Combine the crumbs with the melted butter in a small bowl and mix well until incorporated.
- Before adding the crumbs to the pan, wrap the bottom and sides of the spring form pan in 3 layers of aluminum foil. This will help keep the water out during the water bath.
- Add the crumbs to the 8-inch spring form pan, distribute them evenly, using a cup or the bottom of something flat to press the crumbs into the pan. If desired, you can have the crumbs go up the sides of the pan a bit.
- Place the pan in the oven, bake the crust for 8 to 10 minutes.
- Remove the pan from the oven, and allow it to cool to room temperature before adding the cheesecake mixture.
- Turn the oven down to 325 degrees F.
- In a large mixing bowl, beat the 3 packages of cream cheese until smooth, about 2 to 3 minutes. Add in the sugar, vanilla, and espresso, beat again, Add in the eggs, ONE at a time, beating after each one. Beat the mixture for 1 additional minute. Pour the cheesecake mixture on top of the cooled crust. Make sure the crust and pan have cooled before doing so.
- Place the 8 inch round spring form pan inside a 9 x 13 inch cake pan. Carefully fill the 9 x 13 inch pan with water, filling it about 1 inch below the top of the tin foil on the 8 inch pan.
- Place the water bath with the cheesecake inside in the oven and bake at 325 degrees F for 60 minutes. The cheesecake is done when the center wobbles a little when you jiggle the pan. The edges of the cheesecake should look firmer than the center.
- Once your cheesecake looks done, turn the oven off and open the oven door a little. Allow the cheesecake to cool to room temperature inside the oven before removing – this could be 60 to 90 minutes.
- Once cooled, remove the cheesecake from the oven. Take the aluminum foil of carefully and place the cheesecake (still in the pan) in the fridge for a least 6 hours or overnight.
- Before serving, carefully unmold the cheesecake from the pan. Allow the pan to do most of the work, some of the cheesecake may stick to the pan, but the cheesecake should naturally separate from the pan.
- Place the chocolate chips in a heat proof bowl.
- In a small sauce pan over medium heat, bring the heavy cream to a boil. Once boiling, pour the heavy cream over the chocolate chips. Allow the mixture to sit for 1 to 2 minutes, melting the chocolate chips, then stir well to mix. Allow the chocolate to cool for 5 to 7 minutes.
- Pour/spoon the chocolate ganache on top of the cheesecake, using a spatula to spread it around.
- Add mini chocolate chips on top of the ganache.
- Serve. Cover and refrigerate any leftovers.