I made this decadent cheesecake for my friend Natalie. There's not much more to say; other than it was sweet, rich and perfect.
140g plain digestive biscuits, finely ground
55g butter, melted
handful of milk or dark chocolate chips
170g of white chocolate
400g cream cheese, at room temperature
140g caster sugar
175mL crème fraîche, at room temperature
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 large eggs, seperated, at room temperature.
Grease a 20cm round springform cake tin. Finely grind the digestive biscuits into crumbs in a food processor. Make a well in the crumbs and pour in the butter. Stir thoroughly with a wooden spoon so that all the crumbs are coated in the butter. Spread the buttered crumbs over the bottom of the prepared tin, pressing down to make an even base. Sprinkle this base with chocolate chips and press them gently into the crumbs. Chill in the fridge for 30 minutes, for the freezer for around 20 minutes. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees fan-forced. Break the white chocolate into a heatproof bowl set over a pan of barely simmering water. Let the chocolate melt slowly, then remove the pan from the heat and leave to cool for around 10 minutes. Beat the cream cheese until soft, then beat in the sugar followed by the crème fraîche and the vanilla extract. Beat until smooth and creamy. Beat in the egg yolks one at a time, then fold in the cooled white chocolate. Whisk the egg whites in a seperate bowl until they form soft peaks, then add the chocolate mixture and fold in. Pour the mixture over the biscuit base and smooth the surface. Bake for about 50 minutes until firm (but still with a wobble in the middle). Remove the tin from the oven and leave to cool, then chill for at least 4 hours. To serve, carefully turn the cheesecake out. Option is to dust lightly with unsweetened cocoa powder, or just savour it plain!
I believe the secret to getting a good cheesecake is using the cream cheese, eggs and crème fraîche at room temperature. Also, don't overmix - just mix until things are creamy and lumps are gone - this will help to avoid your cheesecake from splitting.