A smooth silky cheesecake with hints of beer right on top of a salty pretzel crust is just the dessert for any beer themed Cinco de Mayo parties you may have planned.
By Jackie Dodd
What goes better with beer than pretzels? A smooth silky cheesecake with hints of beer right on top of a salty pretzel crust is just the dessert for any beer themed Cinco de Mayo parties you may have planned. Chocolate stouts are growing immensely in popularity, and easy to pick up at any large chain craft beer distributor (think Total Wine or BevMo). Look for a malty stout with notes of chocolate and coffee for the perfect blend of flavors.
- 4 standard sized graham crackers
- 1 cup pretzel rods
- 2 tbs brown sugar
- 3 tbs melted butter, unsalted
- 7 oz dark chocolate (60%)
- 1 cup Chocolate Stout
- 3, 8 oz packages of cream cheese, softened
- 1½ cup sugar
- 3 eggs
- 2 tbs flour
- ⅓ cup cocoa powder
- ½ salt
- 1 tbs espresso powder
- 1 cup sour cream
- ¼ cup powdered sugar
- 2 tbs Chocolate Stout
- Place one oven rack in the middle position, with one rack below. Preheat oven to 350.
- In a food processor add the graham crackers, brown sugar and the pretzels and process until it’s the consistency of crumbs. Turn the food processor on, remove the stopper from the lid and slowly add the butter and process until it resembles wet sand.
- Coat the inside of a 9 inch spring form pan with butter. Pour the crust into the spring form pan. Using the bottom of a heavy, flat bottom glass, press the crust very well into the bottom of the pan until well compacted.
- In a pot over medium high heat, add the beer and the chocolate, stir until melted and remove from heat. Allow to cool.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer add the cream cheese and the sugar and mix until smooth. One at a time, add the eggs, scraping the bottom of the bowl between additions. Pour the cooled chocolate into the mixer and beat until well combined. Lift the head of the mixer and sprinkle the flour, cocoa powder, espresso powder and salt over the batter, stir on low speed until just combined.
- Pour the batter into the pan over the crust.
- Place the pan in the oven in the middle position. Place a baking dish on the rack below the cheesecake, fill with water.
- If you have experience with a water bath, feel free to use that technique. In my experience, the water leaks into the pan, making the crust soggy. Placing a basin of water below the cheesecake has a similar effect without the soggy crust.
- Bake the cheesecake until the center no longer jiggles when you shake the rack, about 45-50 minutes. This isn’t a situation where a tooth pick inserted in the middle should come out clean, you just need the center to set and it will continue to set as it cools. Remove from oven.
- For the sour cream topping: add the ingredients to a bowl and whisk until well combined. Top the cheesecake with the sour cream topping and return to the oven for 8 minutes. Remove cheesecake and chill in the pan until ready to serve, at least 3 hours.