Recipe: Creamy Cheesecake

Creamy_Cheesecake

By: Jacquelyn Prater

I don't have much of a sweet tooth. My indulgences tend to be more salty/meaty/fatty. But one thing I simply can't resist is a really good cheesecake. So many places have taken the humble cheesecake and turned it into a tooth-rotting, stomach ache-inducing sugar bomb. Blech. I like my cheesecake to be smooth, tangy and not too heavy. Here is a super basic cheesecake recipe that you can customize any way you like!

Ingredients

Crust:

  • 1/3 cup graham cracker crumbs
  • 2 tsp of sugar
  • 1 tsp of salt
  • 1 tbsp of melted butter

Filling:

  • 16 oz of cream cheese, softened to room temperature (don't microwave it!)
  • 1/2 cup of sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/4 cup of heavy cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • zest of half a lemon

Instructions

  1. Mix together all the crust ingredients and press it into the bottom of a spring form cake pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 5 -7 minutes. Remove from oven and let the crust cool completely before filling.
  2. Beat the softened cream cheese with the sugar in a stand mixer (or with an eletric hand mixer) until fluffy (about 2 minutes).
  3. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and add the eggs, slowly, one at a time. Scrape down the bowl in between each egg to ensure everything is incorporated.
  4. Add the vanilla, lemon zest and heavy cream and mix well. Pour the filling into the cooled crust.
  5. Bake the cake in a 325 degree oven for 17-20 minutes, or until the center is set (no longer super jiggly).
  6. Remove the cake and let it cool completely. I like to freeze my cake in the pan and then serve it, generally the following day. To serve, just remove from the freezer and leave on the counter for 5-10 minutes before releasing the spring form ring and slicing.

Garnish your cheesecake with raspberries, caramel sauce, chocolate syrup...whatever you choose!