Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Best Ever Cheesecake

As mentioned in my MPM post, I made a cheesecake for my student teacher's birthday. I wanted to share the recipe (again!) because it was, by far, the best cheesecake I've ever made. It was creamy and smooth, but not overly rich. It had a good balance of flavors and wasn't overly sweet. It was easy to make, but looks like it took all day and night. I wish I had taken a picture.

Best Cheesecake
3/4 cups Graham Cracker Crumbs

1/3 cup margarine or butter, melted
1-1/4 cups sugar, divided
3 pkg. (8 oz. each) Cream Cheese, softened
1 cup Light Sour Cream
2 tsp. vanilla
3 eggs
Sliced Strawberries in Syrup for topping

PREHEAT oven to 350°F if using a silver 8- or 9-inch springform pan (or to 325°F if using a dark nonstick 8- or 9-inch springform pan. I used this Pampered Chef pan with a glass bottom and baked it at 325 degrees). Mix graham cracker crumbs, margarine and 1/4 cup of the sugar. Press firmly onto bottom and 2-1/2 inches up side of pan; set aside.

BEAT cream cheese and the remaining 1 cup sugar in large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed until well blended. Add sour cream and vanilla; mix well. Add eggs, one at a time, beating on low speed after each addition just until blended. Pour into crust.

BAKE 1 hour to 1 hour 10 min. or until center is almost set. Turn oven off. Open oven door slightly. Let cheesecake set in oven 1 hour. Remove cheesecake from oven; cool completely. Refrigerate at least 4 hours or overnight. Loosen cheesecake from rim of pan; remove rim. Top cheesecake with strawberries just before serving. Store leftover cheesecake in refrigerator.


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