You know you want a slice of this. I would gladly share with you if we were neighbors, but since we aren't you will simply have to make it for yourself to taste the creamy goodness. After you make this *dynamite* gluten free Andes Mint Cheesecake I highly recommend the following: First, cut yourself the biggest slice you can. Next, turn off your phone, put on some cozy slippers and curl up in your favorite chair (it would be a bonus if you could talk someone into giving you a foot massage at this time). Then, close your eyes as you put the first bite into your mouth and savor the insanely smooth, rich texture. Smile, as you experience the perfect balance of chocolate and mint. Finally (and a bit dramatically), throw your head back and laugh out loud to celebrate the sheer indulgence of it all. Gluten free? YES! Compromised? NO WAY! This Andes Mint Cheesecake is perfection, even your gluten-eating friends will agree. Do you want to make someone really, really happy? Bake this winner of a cheesecake and share it with them. Be ready to receive lots of hugs, and compliments galore. I would never steer you wrong my friends. I take my desserts very seriously. Do be advised that it is a tad bit addicting... don't say I didn't warn you. :)
1 1/2 cups gluten free animal cookies (I use EnviroKidz Organic Gluten-Free Vanilla Animal Cookies ), crushed into fine crumbs
(Tip: Buying the EnviroKids Animal Cookies in bulk from Amazon (follow link above) offers a substantial savings; they are a perfect substitute for replacing graham crackers or vanilla wafers in all of your cookie crusts and other dessert recipes. I always keep multiple boxes on hand!)
6 tablespoons confectioners sugar
6 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
6 tablespoons butter, melted
4 packages (8 oz. each) , softened
1 cup sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 package Andes Creme de Menthe Thins (28 candies), chopped
1 additional package Andes Creme de Menthe Thins (28 candies), left whole
3 tablespoons whipping cream
Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees F.
For crust, combine cookie crumbs, confectioners sugar, and cocoa powder. Stir in melted butter until well blended. Press onto the bottom of a 9 inch spring form pan. Bake at 325 degrees F, for 10 minutes. (Tip: wrap the bottom of your spring form pan with foil to catch any butter drippings). Cool on a wire rack.
For filling, beat cream cheese and 1 cup sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer at medium speed until well blended. Add eggs and vanilla; mix on low speed until JUST blended; do not over mix. Stir in 1 package (28 pieces) chopped Andes Mint candies.
Bake at 325 degrees F, 1 hour and 5 minutes or until center is almost set. Run a knife between the rim of the pan and the cheesecake. Cool on a wire rack to room temperature.
For topping, set aside 10-12 whole Andes Mint candies for decorating the top of the cheesecake. Place remaining Andies Mint candies and whipping cream in a microwave safe bowl. Microwave on high for 45 seconds. Stir until mints are melted and mixture is smooth. Pour over cooled cheesecake, spreading to cover the surface and drizzle down sides of cheesecake.
Refrigerate cheesecake 3 hours or until serving time. Decorate each slice with 1 of the reserved mints.
Yield: 10-12 servings
*This recipe was adapted from a recipe on www.tootsie.com