For the Crust:
1 pkg graham crackers
2 tablespoons sugar
3 tablespoons butter, melted
For the Filling:
12 ounces (about 1 cup) dulce de leche*
2 (8 oz.) pkgs cream cheese, at room temperature
½ cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
For the Glaze:
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
2 teaspoons light corn syrup
1 Tbsp chocolate liqueur or heavy cream
1. Make the Crust. Position an oven rack in the middle position and preheat oven to 325F. Line the bottom and sides of an 8-inch square pan with parchment paper, leaving a 2-inch overhang on all sides. Spray parchment paper with non-stick spray.
2. Finally grind the graham crackers with the sugar in a food processor. With the motor running, add the butter, blending until combined. Press mixture evenly onto bottom of baking pan. Bake 10 minutes, then place on a cooling rack to cool for 5 minutes.
3. Make the Filling. Spread the dulce de leche evenly over the graham crust, then place pan in refrigerator while you prepare the cream cheese layer.
4. Beat the cream cheese on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the sugar and continue to beat on medium-high for another 2 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl if necessary. Beat in the vanilla extract.
5. Pour the cream cheese mixture over the dulce de leche layer and spread evenly, and bake for 45-55 minutes, or until the center only slightly jiggles. Remove from the oven and cool completely-about 2 hours.
6. Glaze the cake. Heat the chocolate, butter, liqueur and light corn syrup in a double boiler or in a microwave at 30-second intervals, stirring until smooth. Cool for about 10 minutes. Pour the glaze over the cheesecake, tilting the pan to ensure the top is coated evenly. Chill for several hours-or at least 30 minutes before serving.
7. Lift the cheesecake from the pan using the parchment handles and slice into squares using a sharp knife, wiping it clean after each cut. **
*You can generally find Dulce de Leche near the sweetened condensed milk or in the international isle at most grocery stores.
**Let the pan sit at room temperature for about 10 minutes before you lift the bars out and cut them. The chocolate glaze will crack if you cut them while they are still very cold. Learn from me, my friends. :)