Of all the genres of cooking, baking is one of my favorite things. I find cheesecakes to be very easy to prepare and decadent to eat. And they are usually my most requested item.
This recipe is adapted from a Bon Appetit 1999 recipe which called for strawberries. I was in a more elegant mood for a recent patio party, so I choose raspberries instead. The glaze on top is a simply melted raspberry jelly, but I took it up a notch and added a splash of Chambord.
We all agreed the results were lovely and scrumptious. I hope you will try and enjoy just the same!
20 whole graham crackers (10 oz. total), broken
3/4c. (1-1/2 sticks) chilled unsalted butter, diced
1/2c. packed golden brown sugar
4 8-oz. packages cream cheese, room temperature
3T fresh lemon juice
2-1/2t. vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
3T all purpose flour
5 large eggs
3 cartons of fresh raspberries
1 18oz. raspberry jelly
1. Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 350 degrees. Wrap foil around outside of 10-inch diameter springform pan with 3-inch high sides. Combine graham crackers, butter and sugar in processor. Using on/off turns, blend until crumbs begin to stick together. Press crumbs onto bottom and 2-3/4 inches up sides of springform pan. Bake crust 10 minutes. Transfer to rack and cool while preparing filling.
2. Beat cream cheese, sugar, lemon juice, vanilla, salt in large bowl until very smooth. Beat in flour. Add eggs and beat until just blended, stopping occasionally to scrape down sides of bowl. Pour batter into crust.
3. Bake cheesecake until outer 2-inch edge of cake is puffed and slightly cracked, center is just set and top is brown in spots, about 55 minutes. Transfer cake to rack. Cool 10 minutes. Maintain oven temperature.
4. Make topping: Whisk sour cream, sugar, and vanilla in medium bowl to blend. Spoon topping over cake, spreading to edge of pan. Bake until topping is just set, about 5 minutes.
5. Cool hot cake in pan on rack. Chill overnight.
6. Release pan sides from cheesecake. Arrange whole raspberries, points facing up, atop cheesecke; cover completely. Stir jelly in heavy small saucepan over medium-low heat until melted. Add Chambord. Cool to barely lukewarm, about 5 minutes. Brush enough jelly over berries to glaze generously, allowing some to drop between berries. Reserve remaining glaze in saucepan. (Cake and glaze can be prepared 6 hours ahead. Cover cake and refrigerate.)
7. Rewarm remaining glaze until pourable. Cut cake into wedges. Pass remaining glaze separately or drizzle on plate before serving.