Fogelsville Woman Wins Fair's Chocolate Championship

Collette Gaugler of Fogelsville recently won the Chocolate Championship at the Great Allentown Fair for her Chocolate Almond Cheesecake.

It was the sweet taste of victory for Collette Gaugler of Fogelsville, who recently won the Chocolate Championship at the Great Allentown Fair for her Chocolate Almond Cheesecake.

Gaugler was a first time winner in the chocolate contest at the fair. Her prizes were the coveted blue ribbon, $150 in cash, plus a big chocolate gift basket.

Gaugler said this was the second time she's entered a cake in the fair's contest.

"I've been baking since I've been married, about 28 years," Gaugler said. "I like to bake. Everybody tells me that I bake so good, so I thought I'd enter. I was hoping I would win, but I didn't know if I would or not."

Gaugler said she found the recipe for her Chocolate Almond Cheesecake online and made a few changes.

"I found the recipe online and modified to the way to what I wanted. I added the almonds, put more chocolate than in called for, stuff like that."

Here is the winning recipe.

Chocolate Almond Cheesecake


1-1/2 cups chocolate graham cracker crumbs

2 tablespoons sugar

1/4 cup butter, melted


1/4 cup Ghirardelli Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips

1/4 cup heavy whipping cream

3 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened

1 cup sugar

1/2 cup Ghirardelli Unsweetened Cocoa

3 eggs

1 teaspoon almond extract


1-1/2 cups Ghirardelli Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips

1/4 cup heavy whipping cream

1 teaspoon almond extract


1 tablespoon water

1 teaspoon unflavored gelatin

1 cup heavy whipping cream

3 tablespoons sugar

1 teaspoon almond extract

Ghirardelli chocolate squares


In small bowl, combine graham cracker crumbs and sugar; stir in butter. Press onto the bottom and halfway up the sides of a greased 9-inch springform pan. Bake at 350 degrees F for 10 minutes. Cool on a wire rack. Reduce oven to 325 degrees F.

For filling, melt Ghirardelli semi-sweet chocolate chips in a microwave, stir until smooth. Add cream and mix well; set aside. In a mixing bowl, beat cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Add Ghirardelli unsweetened cocoa and beat well. Add the eggs and beat on low speed until just combined. Stir in almond extract and reserved chocolate mixture. Pour over crust and place pan on baking sheet. Bake for 45 to 55 minutes at 325 degrees F or until center is almost set.

For the topping, melt Ghirardelli semi-sweet chocolate chips in microwave until smooth and immediately stir in cream and almond extract, mix until well blended. Spread over filling. Cool pan on wire rack for 10 minutes, then carefully run a knife around edge of pan to loosen. Cool 1 to 2 hours and then refrigerate 4 to 6 hours. Remove the sides of pan.

For garnish, place water in small bowl and sprinkle gelatin on top. Let set one minute, then microwave for 30 seconds, set aside. In mixing bowl, whip cream until peaks form, sprinkle in sugar and beat well. Beat in gelatin and almond extract. Pipe on top of cheesecake as desired, and top with Ghirardelli chocolate squares.


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