For the crust:
1 14 oz package chocolate sandwich cookies (or 3 cups), separated and filling discarded, pulsed or smashed into crumbs
1/2 cup butter, melted
2 14 oz cans Oregon fruit Red Tart Cherries, drained and dried well
4 8oz. cream cheese packages, at room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup sour cream at room temperature
1/2 cup half n half at room temperature
4 large eggs at room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/3 cups all purpose flour
For the Topping:
1 cup chocolate chips, melted
For the crust:
- Preheat your oven to 375° F.
- Place the cookie crumbs in a medium sized bowl.
- Add the melted butter and stir to combine. The mixture should resemble wet sand, and if you squeeze a little bit it should hold its shape. If not, you need more butter.
- Spray your 9? springform pan with baking spray and press the cookie crumbs into the bottom and sides. You can use the bottom of a measuring cup to help press it down hard and evenly.
- Bake for 8-10 mins until it smells like heaven from your oven and the crust is firm.
For the cheesecake:
- Lower your oven temperature to 350° F.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, add the cream cheese, sour cream, sugar and half n half.
- Mix on low-medium speed, then add 1 egg at a time, mixing for a few seconds in between additions.
- Stop the mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl.
- Start the mixer again on low speed and add in the half n half and vanilla.
- Add in the flour slowly then move your speed up to medium and mix for 2-3 minutes. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl to make sure everything is mixed evenly.
- Pour half the batter into the spring form pan, then half of the cherries on top. Pour the last half of the batter into the pan and sprinkle the top with the remaining cherries. Press the cherries in under batter so they are barely peeking out.
- Fill a 9×13 in pan with 1 inch of water and place it on the bottom rack of your oven.
- Place the cheesecake on the upper rack of the oven and bake for 45-55 minutes.
- The cheesecake is done when the edges start to brown and break away from the sides of the pan. It will still be jiggly in the middle- you want that!
- Turn the oven off and crack the oven door open a little bit. Leave the cheesecake to cool for one hour, then remove to finish cooling on the counter.
- Chill in the refrigerator at least 4 hours or overnight, then pour and smooth melted chocolate on top.