Strawberries and Champagne Cheesecake
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 45 min. Bake: 55 min.+ chilling
YIELD: 12 servings.
1 cup champagne or other sparkling wine
2 cups chocolate graham cracker crumbs (about 14 whole crackers)
2 cups sugar, divided
1/2 cup butter, melted
1 cup sliced fresh strawberries
3 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
2 large egg yolks
20 fresh strawberries, hulled
1/3 cup milk chocolate chips
1 teaspoon shortening, divided
1/3 cup white baking chips
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
Place champagne in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil; cook until liquid is reduced to about 1/4 cup, about 8 minutes. Set aside to cool.
In a small bowl, combine the cracker crumbs, 1/2 cup sugar, and butter. Press onto the bottom and 1-1/2 in. up the sides of a greased 9-in. springform pan; set aside. Arrange sliced strawberries over the bottom.
In a large bowl, beat cream cheese and remaining sugar until smooth. Beat in the sweetened condensed milk, cornstarch, and reduced champagne. Add eggs and egg yolks; beat on low speed just until combined. Pour over strawberries. Place pan on a baking sheet.
Bake at 325° for 55-60 minutes or until center is almost set. Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Carefully run a knife around the edge of the pan to loosen; cool 1 hour longer. Refrigerate overnight.
Remove sides of the springform pan. For the topping, wash strawberries and gently pat with paper towels until completely dry. Slice and arrange over cheesecake. In a microwave, melt chocolate chips and 1/2 teaspoon shortening; stir until smooth. Drizzle over strawberries. Repeat melting and drizzling with white baking chips and remaining shortening.
In a small bowl, beat cream until it begins to thicken. Add confectioners’ sugar; beat until soft peaks form. Serve cheesecake with whipped cream.
1 slice: 684 calories, 42g fat (25g saturated fat), 185mg cholesterol, 378mg sodium, 68g carbohydrate (55g sugars, 1g fiber), 9g protein.