This is a deeply dark, rich and indulgent chocolate hazelnut cheesecake is perfect for an Easter treat or special occasion. It’s flavoured with Frangelico a hazelnut liqueur, but you could also use any chocolate, orange or coffee flavoured liqueur or a cream liqueur. We have used shortbread biscuits for the base but you could also use chocolate biscuits or digestives, or a slice of sponge cake. This is not a dessert for anyone on a diet as it needs to use full-fat soft cheese and mascarpone so that it is rich enough to set firmly. If liked you can just decorate with a dusting of cocoa powder, toasted hazelnuts or even chocolate truffles
- 350g shortbread biscuits
- 100g butter melted
- For the filling:
- 3 sheets gelatine
- 100ml double cream
- 300g full-fat soft cheese
- 200g mascarpone
- 400g dark chocolate
- 3 tbsp Frangelico (hazelnut liqueur)
- 1 egg white
- Dark chocolate curls, to decorate
Line the base of a 20cm spring form cake tin with baking parchment.
Place the shortbread biscuits in a food processor and whiz to make fine crumbs. Add the melted better and mix well. Press into the base of the prepared tin and chill for 30 mins while making the topping.
Place the gelatine leaves in a bowl with 3 tbsp cold water and allow to soften for 10 mins. Meanwhile warm the double cream in a small pan, but do not boil. Remove the gelatine from the water and place in the cream, stir until dissolved.
Chop the chocolate and set aside 100g. Melt the remaining 300g chocolate in a bowl over a pan of gently simmering water. Mix the soft cheese with the mascarpone. Fold the melted chocolate, the cream and gelatine mixture and the liqueur into the cheese mixture. Whisk the egg white until it forms stiff peaks, then fold into the chocolate mixture with the remaining chopped chocolate. Spoon into the tin, level the top and chill overnight.
When ready to serve, run a hot cloth around the edge of the tin to loosen, then transfer the cake to a flat plate. Decorate with chocolate curls
Don’t be afraid to use leaf gelatine, it is easy to use and makes recipes set silky smooth. Always soften it first in liquid then dissolve in a warm liquid before adding to your mixture.