Thursday, December 20, 2007

White Chocolate-Candy Cane Cheesecake

This is one of the most delicious Christmas desserts ever!
Try using chocolate graham crackers for the crust, so yummy. To create an icicle effect on top of cheesecake, spoon the whipped topping into a resealable plastic bag. Snip one of the corners off bottom of bag. Squeeze topping out to form soft peaks on top of cake.

1 cup HONEY MAID Graham Cracker Crumbs
3/4 cup plus 3 Tbsp. sugar, divided
3 Tbsp. butter, melted
3 pkg. (8 oz. each) PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese, softened
3 eggs
4 squares BAKER'S Premium White Baking Chocolate, melted
1/4 tsp. peppermint extract
2 cups thawed COOL WHIP Whipped Topping
1/2 cup chopped candy canes

PREHEAT oven to 325°F if using a silver 9-inch springform pan (or to 300°F if using dark nonstick 9-inch springform pan). Mix graham crumbs, 3 Tbsp. of the sugar and the butter; press onto bottom of pan. Bake 10 min.
BEAT cream cheese and remaining 3/4 cup sugar with electric mixer until well blended. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing on low speed after each addition just until blended. Stir in chocolate and extract; pour over crust.
BAKE 45 to 50 min. or until center is almost set. Run knife or metal spatula around rim of pan to loosen cake; cool before removing rim. Refrigerate at least 4 hours. Top with the whipped topping and chopped candy just before serving. Store leftovers in refrigerator.

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