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Lamar’s Basic Cheesecake Recipe

Cheesecake

Lamar’s Basic Cheesecake Recipe

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Lamar’s Basic Cheesecake Recipe
(adapted from “The Southern Cake Book” by Southern Living )

INGREDIENTS (all ingredients should be at room temperature)

For the crust you’ll need

1/4 cup sugar,
1-1/2 cups walnuts ( or you can use pecans, pistachios, almonds, graham crackers), and
2 Tbsp of butter, melted.

For the cheesecake you’ll need

3 – 8oz packages of cream cheese (I use American Neufchatel – it contains 30% less fat and I’ve suffered no consequences using it),
1 – 8oz package mascarpone,
3/4 cup sugar,
three large eggs (eggs from chickens that are pastured tend to have, at least in my experience, larger yolks and add some richness to the batter),
1 tsp vanilla or almond extract, and
1/4 tsp salt.

Prepare a 9-inch springform pan with cooking spray, preferably one that contains flour (not necessary if you are using a silicone pan, except you’ll want to butter the bottom of the pan).

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Combine the 1/4 cup sugar and other crust ingredients in a food processor and pulse to the consistency of sand. Drizzle in the melted butter, processing to thoroughly incorporate the butter into the dry mixture. Press the mixture firmly and evenly into the bottom of the pan. Bake it for 15 minutes then remove it to a cooling rack.
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Reduce the oven temperature to 300 degrees and put a roasting pan with about 1″ of water in it on the bottom shelf of your oven.

Blend the cream cheese, mascarpone, and 3/4 cup sugar on low to medium speed until blended, smooth, and creamy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating until just blended after each addition. Add the flavoring and salt and continue beating until blended and very smooth.

Pour the batter into the pan and shake slightly to ensure even distribution. Bake at 300 degrees for 1 hr and 20 mins, or until the center is almost set.

Turn the oven off and prop the door open with a wooden spoon; allow the cheesecake to cool in the oven for 45 mins to an hour.

Remove from the oven. If you’ve used a metal pan, gently run a warm, sharp knife around the edge to loosen; this is not necessary with a silicone pan. Allow the cake to cool for a couple more hours, then cover and chill for 8 hrs. Remove the sides of the pan, put the cheesecake on your cake plate and it’s ready to go. If planning to use later, return it to the refrigerator. If refrigerated, remove the cheesecake from the refrigerator about an hour before you plan to serve it.

TIP

When cutting your cheesecake, use a very sharp knife. Hold it under the hottest water you can get from your tap before cutting. Cut three slices, re-heating the knife in water before each cut. Remove the center slice, and if it looks like you want it to, use it. If not, put it aside to eat eat when looks don’t matter (like while you’re cleaning up after your meal).Then start plating with the slice on either side of the one first removed; use the heated knife to cut down, then slide slightly left or right to separate from the balance of the cake. You’ll be pleased.

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