I have finally found a balance between the grainy and the creamy part of a cheese cake and it is so easy using a food processor!
- 1 1⁄2 cups graham cracker crumbs
- 6 tablespoons soft margarine or 6 tablespoons butter, cut into small chunks
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 1⁄2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 24 ounces cream cheese, cut in chunks
- 8 ounces ricotta cheese
- 1 1⁄2 cups sugar
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 4 eggs
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- For the crust: (If you don't have prepared graham crumbs: use about 18 graham crackers and and process until coarse crumbs are formed). Add remaining crust ingredients: margarine/butter, sugar(s), and cinnamon and process until blended, approximately 5 to 6 seconds. Press into a sprayed 10-inch springform pan. Wipe bowl and blade with paper towels.
- For the filling: Process cheeses with sugar until blended, about 15 seconds. Add eggs and vanilla extract. Process until smooth and creamy, approximately 20 to 30 seconds. Pour over crust.
- Place a pie plate half-filled with water on the lowest rack of oven. Place cheesecake on the middle rack. Bake for approximately 50 to 60 minutes. When done, edges will be set but center will jiggle slightly. Turn off heat and let cheesecake cool in oven with door partly open for about 1 hour. It will firm up during this time.
- Refrigerate and chill approximately 3-4 hours.
- Variations: You can substitute chocolate or vanilla wafers in the crust. You can use all granulated white sugar or all brown sugar in the crust. You can substitute 4 egg whites for 2 of the eggs in the filling. You can substitute 2 Tbs. of lemon juice for the vanilla in the filling. Fresh berries is our favorite topping. For mini cheese cakes: Omit crust. Line muffin tins with 24 paper liners. Place a vanilla wafer in each liner. Top with cheesecake mixture. Bake in preheated 360 degree oven for approximately 12 minutes, until set. Refrigerate. You can top each with fresh berries or spoonful of thick jam.
I first reviewed this recipe on 10/22/2013 and it went like this:<br/>Oh my stars, this recipe goes into my BEST of 2013 category! I used the muffin tins with a vanilla wafer for the crust and guesstimated at the temp (360 degrees, somewhere between 350 and 375 markers). I let them cook for 17 minutes and think they turned out perfect. Next time I will try your lemon juice variation, instead of the vanilla flavoring. I can't thank you enough for sharing this recipe, baezus! Made for My 3 Chef's event<br/>I made this again last night 11/6/2013, and made it in a spring form pan using vanilla wafers for the crust, omitting the cinnamon, and using all granulated sugar. For the filling I cut back on the vanilla extract to use 1/2 tbsp. I did mix this in my stand mixer this time and found that, for me, it was easier. How did it taste? I'm glad you asked:) The smaller ones I made first time were cute and very good, but the whole cheesecake with a true crust is a must, altho, I may make the 'cupcake' version again, for the ease of a snatch and git snack. So happy to have stumbled across this 'gem'. Thanks again.