Prep 20 mins
Cook 3 hrs
This is an easy recipe for a cheesecake with an unbelievably silky texture because the machine steams the cake as it bakes. Recipe is from Beth Hensperger and was printed in "Food & Wine" (November 2007). You must resist the urge to peek inside as it is cooking—the lid must stay closed to retain heat. Cake must be chilled for at least 4 hours.
- 3⁄4 cup graham cracker crumbs
- 2 1⁄2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 1⁄4 teaspoon cinnamon
- 2⁄3 cup sugar, plus
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1⁄4 teaspoon salt
- 12 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
- 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon almond extract or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup sour cream
- In a medium bowl, mix the graham cracker crumbs with the melted butter, cinnamon, 1 tablespoon of the sugar and a pinch of salt. Press the crumbs over the bottom and 1 inch up the side of a 6-inch springform pan that’s 3 inches deep.
- In a standing mixer fitted with a paddle, combine the cream cheese with the flour, the remaining 2/3 cup of sugar and 1/4 teaspoon of salt. Beat at medium-high speed until smooth, about 2 minutes. Scrape down the side of the bowl and add the eggs and the almond extract. Beat at medium speed until blended. Add the sour cream and beat until smooth. Pour the batter into the springform pan.
- Fill a 6- to 7-quart round or oval slow cooker with 1/2 inch of water and position a rack in the bottom. Set the cheesecake on the rack. Cover the slow cooker with a triple layer of paper towels and the lid. Turn the cooker to high and cook for 2 hours without peeking. Turn off the heat and let stand until the slow cooker has cooled, 1 hour.
- Remove the lid and the paper towels and transfer the cheesecake to a rack to cool to room temperature, about 1 hour. Cover the cheesecake with plastic wrap and refrigerate until chilled, at least 4 hours.
- Heat a sharp, thin-bladed knife under hot water; dry the knife. Carefully run the knife around the edge of the cheesecake. Release the spring and lift the cheesecake out of the mold. Cut into wedges and serve.
This worked perfectly. I made it in a 5 quart slow cooker, and my springform pan fit in well, with an inch or so on the narrow sides. I did not have a rack that fit, so used canning jar bands. These are just about 1/2 " high, which makes it easy to judge how much water to add. I also always put aluminum foil around the pan, to avoid any leaking. It was very quick to make, and then you just had to wait for it to steam and then cool. I hope to make different versions of this, as making it in the slow cooker is so much better than using an oven in the summer. Update: I made this again, but swirled some Nutella through the batter, creating a marbled effect - oh, man - was this ever good! I thinned the Nutella with some cream to make it easier to swirl.
To make low carb, I made this without the crust, and used Splenda for sweetening. It was excellent...firm, but still very creamy. I usually use vanilla for flavouring, but almond worked well for a delightful change.