Tiramisu Cheesecake

1-1/2 cups crushed chocolate cookies
1/3 cup melted butter
3 tablespoons espresso powder (or instant coffee granules)
2 tablespoons hot water
27 ounces mascarpone cheese (or cream cheese)
1 cup sour cream
1-1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
3 large eggs
Ladyfinger cookies
3-1/2 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, grated
chocolate-covered coffee beans (for garnish, optional)

Pre-heat oven to 325 F. Stir together the cookie crumbs and melted butter, then press into the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan. Bake 10 minutes, set aside to cool. In a small bowl, dissolve the instant coffee powder in the hot water. Set aside. In a large mixing bowl, beat the mascarpone cheese, sour cream, sugar and flour. Stirring, add eggs one at a time. Stir in coffee mixture. Do not mix too much. Set aside. Butter the sides of the pan, then line it with parchment paper. Lightly butter the paper. Cut the ladyfinger cookies in two, lengthwise. Place the ladyfinger halves in the mold, standing up, so that the sugared side is against the buttered paper and the cut side is facing in, so that the ladyfingers circle the entire pan and look like a crown. If you have a hard time getting them to stand up, cut the bottoms at a slight angle so that they lean slightly towards the wall of the pan. Pour the cheese mixture into the pan. Verify that all of the ladyfingers are standing up and are pressed into the bottom of the pan, the bang the pan 3-4 times on the countertop to release any air pockets. Set aside. In another 9-inch cake pan, pour 3 cups of water. Set it in the center of the bottom rack of the oven. Place the cheesecake on the middle oven rack directly above the water-filled pan. Bake 50-55 minutes or until the top of the cake is browned and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. During baking, check the ladyfingers. If they begin to brown, cover them with aluminum foil and return to the oven. When cake is done, turn off the oven and crack open the oven door. Allow the cake to cool in the cooling oven for about 1 hour. Remove the cake from the oven and refrigerate about 4 hours. Before serving, remove the cheesecake from the springform pan and sprinkle with grated chocolate. Garnish with chocolate covered coffee beans, if desired. Allow to sit at room temperature for 15 minutes before serving.

Servings: 12

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