One of my favorite days in elementary school, was always book fair day. We would receive a thin paper catalog of the Scholastic books that would be available, a few weeks prior to the day of the fair. I would hurry home to tell my parents which books I wanted to get. There were a lot of extra chores done in the weeks and days leading up to the book fair. I wanted to be sure to have enough money to get all the books, pencils and stickers I wanted.
During the fourth grade book fair, I decided to buy a cook book. This was the first time that I had selected a cook book to purchase. My mom had many cook books at home and being the book worm I was, I would always select a chapter book when we went to the library or book store.
One recipe in particular has stuck with me since that time and that is the cheesecake recipe. That cookbook is long gone, but my first cheesecake remains.
The recipe has evolved a ton through the years, especially after The Cheesecake Factory displayed their rich, decadent desserts, using far more cream cheese then anyone used back in the day.
Here is my recipe:
4, 8oz packages of cream cheese, room temperature
1 1/2 cups white sugar
1/4 cup all purpose flour
1 tablespoon vanilla
pinch of salt
2 1/2 cups finely ground graham crackers
4 tablespoons butter, melted
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 cup blueberries
1. Wrap 9 inch spring form pan with heavy aluminum foil. Be sure that the entire pan is covered in the foil and that there are no openings to the pan.
2. Combine graham cracker crumbs and melted butter. Using back of measuring cup, press crumbs onto sides of your pan.
3. Bake crust in 325 degree oven for 10 minutes. This will help the crust set, so it remains firm when the cheesecake bakes. Place spring form pan onto a large cookie sheet and surround with 3 cups of water. This is called a water bath and will help contain moisture in your oven so the cheesecake does not crack.
4. Mix cream cheese on low setting until smooth. Add in sugar, vanilla and salt. Add in eggs, one at a time, mixing well between each addition. Mix in flour.
5. Pour batter into pan and bake at 325 degrees for 50-60 minutes, until top is firm and slightly golden.
6. Allow cheesecake to come to room temperature and then rest in the fridge for a minimum of 4-6 hours.
7. For cream topping, whisk together heavy cream, sour cream and powdered sugar. Spread onto top of cheesecake and arrange your favorite fruit.
8. Enjoy 🙂