As a child, I never understood what all the fuss was over repurposed cream cheese on top of graham crackers. I have memories of my mom making cheesecake cupcakes to bring to her family reunion in Philadelphia, Mississippi. She would place a single vanilla wafer at the bottom of a lined cupcake pan. Meanwhile, I was causing mischief in the kitchen by removing one (or two) of the vanilla wafers while she beat the cheesecake batter with an electric hand mixer in one hand and my little sister in the other. The cheesecakes would come out of the oven cracked, like the cement of a sunbaked Mississippi sidewalk, and she would spoon some canned blueberry pie filling on the top before ferrying them to the New Zion Pentecostal Church. Rumor has it my cousin Brian only attended the reunion for these cheesecakes.

Thank goodness our taste buds evolve as we grow older, otherwise I would just have wrinkles and sagging skin to look forward to. This is the cheesecake that I fell in love with and that my four-year-old son begs for. I assumed a four-year-old would have no interest in cheesecake. But when I saw several toddler sized finger craters in the side of the cheesecake I was photographing, I knew who the culprit was. Good thing the holes can be easily hidden with raspberry sauce.

There is only one person who requests cheesecake more often than my son…my Uncle Dale. And don’t let his Tom Selleck mustache and penchant for sitting in adult treehouses hunting deer throw you off…this man is a cheesecake aficionado. I’ve learned over the years not to show up at Dale’s house without a cheesecake in hand.

The excess amount of heavy cream in this cheesecake gives it a velvety texture and cooking the cheesecake in a water bath takes makes it next level. I struggled for years trying to get a watertight springform pan and wrapping the springform pan in layers of aluminum foil only to end up with a soggy graham cracker crust. The large turkey bag completely solves this problem. Most grocery stores carry these year-round, but you can also stock up on these around Thanksgiving and Christmas. I give all the credit to my mother for this idea. It is truly one of the most genius baking hacks I’ve come across.

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Cheesecake


  • Author: Christina
  • Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes (does not include time to chill in the refrigerator)
  • Yield: 12 pieces 1x

Description

The excess amount of heavy cream in this cheesecake gives it a velvety texture and cooking the cheesecake in a water bath takes makes it next level.


Ingredients

Units Scale

Crust

  • 1/2 stick butter, melted
  • 1 1/4 cups graham cracker crumbs (about 12 graham crackers)

Cheesecake

  • 1 1/2 pounds cream cheese, softened
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 1/2 Tbs all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 2 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup heavy cream

Instructions

  1. First make the crust: Mix melted butter with graham cracker crumbs.  Spoon into the bottom of a springform pan. To form the crust, press graham cracker mixture down with the bottom of a glass. Most springform pans are nonstick, so no need for buttering or lining the pan to prevent the cheesecake from sticking.
  2. Next make the cheesecake: Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.  In a standing mixer with a paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese and sugar for at least 5 minutes.  Add flour and salt. Mix to combine.  Add the eggs and egg yolks, one at a time mixing well after each addition.  Add vanilla extract and mix to combine.  With the mixer on low speed, add the heavy cream. Mix to combine.  Make sure to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl to ensure all cream cheese is well incorporated.
  3. Place the springform pan with the graham cracker crust into a large turkey bag. Do not tie the top over the cheesecake, just roll down the excess plastic along the top of the pan. Place the pan into a deep-dish casserole dish or lasagna pan.  Pour cheesecake mixture onto the graham cracker crust.  Move pan to oven.  It is usually easier to pour the water in once the pan has been place in the oven (so you aren’t trying to transport a pan filled with water across the kitchen).
  4. Pour water around the bag to create a water bath. You don’t have to have to the water come completely to the edge of the pan, but it should come up at least ¾ of the side of the pan.  Cook for about 1 hour, or until golden brown on top.
  5. When removing the pan from the water bath, it is easiest to remove the turkey bag and pan from the water bath. Allow the pan containing the water to cool overnight. Then you can safely remove the pan and room temperature water the next morning from the oven.  Refrigerate the cheesecake overnight to allow it completely set
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour
  • Category: Dessert
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: Dessert, Cheesecake

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