Life is uncertain. Eat dessert first.
— Ernestine Ulmer
This exquisite New York-style cheesecake would make an impressive conclusion to any meal. It’s so rich that it doesn’t need a topping of any kind. But, consider garnishing it with fresh strawberries, raspberries and blueberries in keeping with the theme of your Fourth of July celebration.
Carl Monson found the recipe in the first edition of Betty Crocker’s Pie and Pastry Cookbook, which was published in 1968. He and his six-year-old daughter, Hadley, created one of these over-the-top desserts for her grandma, Angie Loecken, for Mother’s Day. “This cheesecake truly melts-in-your-mouth,” Angie said. “It’s absolutely heavenly!” CJK
3 cups crushed graham crackers (about 2 regular-size pkg.)
6 tbsp. sugar
1/3 cup butter, melted
5 (8 oz.) pkg. cream cheese, softened
1 3/4 cup sugar
3 tbsp. flour
1 1/2 tsp. grated orange peel
1 1/2 tsp. grated lemon peel
1/2 tsp. vanilla
2 egg yolks
1/4 cup whipping cream
Lightly spray a 9-inch springform pan with no-stick cooking spray.
Mix crust ingredients and press into bottom of springform pan. Refrigerate crust while mixing cheesecake filling.
Preheat oven to 500°F.
In large mixing bowl, beat cream cheese, sugar, flour, orange and lemon peel, vanilla and 2 of the eggs only until smooth. Continue beating, adding remaining eggs and the yolks, one at a time, until blended. (Take care not to over-beat your filling mixture as over-beating can cause cheesecakes to crack.) On low speed, mix in cream. Pour filling mixture onto graham cracker crust. Bake at 500°F for 12 to 15 minutes.
Reduce oven temperature to 200°F and bake one hour longer. Cool. Refrigerate overnight or for 12 to 14 hours. Loosen cake from the side of the pan and remove the interlocking band. Leave the cake on the bottom round base of the springform pan.
Yield: 20 to 22 servings
A note from Carl: Don’t use more than one-third cup melted butter for the crust or it may leak out of the sides of your springform pan while baking.
When you reduce the oven temperature to 200°F, open the oven door for a moment to let some of the heat out.
A note from Carol: Carl and his wife, Laura, are members of St. Michael Parish in St. Cloud. Their daughters, Charlie (9) and Hadley (6) are both budding chefs. Laura’s mother, Angie Loecken, is the administrative assistant to the Office of Marriage and Family Director for the Diocese of St. Cloud.
If you choose to save this cheesecake recipe for a time later on, explore other summer dessert suggestions on FFF. “Red, White and Blue” was the theme in last year’s “All-American Desserts.” John Wocken’s Striped Ice Cream Cake and Frozen Strawberry Layer Cake both feature angel food cake combined with ice cream, sorbet or frozen yogurt. Yum…