You’ll need softened (room temperature) cream cheese in this recipe. If you don’t have enough time for it to get soft, you can soften it in a double boiler. This can be a chocolate cheesecake as well as a regular one, simply add 1 tablespoon cocoa powder.
Note to the Grain-Freers: No. You didn’t free any grain. Instead, you are free of grain. This almond crust has rice flour in it. If you do not want to use any grain at all, use pecan or almond flour instead. If you are fine with starches, just not grain, you can replace the flour with potato starch or cornstarch.
2 cups sliced almonds
1/3 cup plus one tablespoon cold butter
1 cup rice flour or GF oat flour
¼ a cup sugar
You can use a 9” diameter cheesecake pan, or a 9 by 13” one. The larger one will make thinner cheesecake, but is still good. Butter your choice of pan, set aside. Pour almonds into a separate bowl. Grate the butter (or cut into small slices) into the almonds. Blend them by hand. Pour the flour and sugar in, and blend (by hand) it with the almonds and butter. Make sure all is completely blended, without chunks of butter. Dump mixture into pan, and spread out, mash it onto the bottom of the pan. Cook almonds until light brown. Remove from oven, and immediately pour 1 ½ cups of chocolate chips over the browned almonds.
2 pounds cream cheese
1 cup pure, granulated sugar
3 tablespoons vanilla
Place cream cheese into a clean bowl, and beat with an electric mixer on medium low. As soon as the cream cheese is well-beaten, pour in the sugar. Beat the sugar in. When well blended, add one egg. Beat. Add each other egg, one at a time, beating after each one. Add the vanilla and beat Scrape the cream cheese off the bottom of bowl. Beat one more time, then pour onto prepared pan with almonds and chocolate chips. Put it in the oven at 350 degrees. Cook for ten minutes, then, lower heat to 225 degrees. Cook for another hour. DON’T PEEK! After cheesecake has cooked for one hour, stick a toothpick in the center of the cheesecake. The toothpick should come out almost clean. If you are uncertain about whether or not the cheesecake is done, feel the top with your finger. The cheesecake should feel firm.
If it is not done, cook for another fifteen minutes.
When the cheesecake is cooked turn off the oven, open the oven door a few inches, and let it cool for half an hour. Then, remove it and place it on the counter to cool for another half hour before putting it in the refrigerator. This slow cooling process should prevent the cracking of the cheesecake. If it does not, try this instead:
Remove the cheesecake from the oven when it is done, and place it on the counter. Put a pan lid or a bowl over top of it and let it cool this way for about an hour before refrigerating.