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Prep 20 mins
Cook 40 mins
Adapted from the recipe in SHAPE magazine 3/2009: Vanilla Bean Cheesecake with Blueberry Compote. The original has a blueberry compote from 2.5 c fresh or frozen blueberries, 1/3 c water, 1/4 c sugar, combined in a saucepan and simmered over low heat for 10 minutes, served warm over cake. The cheesecake also called for 2 vanilla beans (seeds only) but these are very expensive (at about $12 for two beans!) so I doubled the vanilla extract. I also doubled the applesauce in the crust, as it made it hold together better.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 9-inch springform pan with parchment paper (bottom only) and coat top with non-stick cooking spray.
- Combine graham cracker crumbs and applesauce to form coarse crumbs. Press crumbs tightly into bottom of pan. Bake for 5 minutes. Set aside.
- Cover outside and bottom of pan with tin foil. Foil should come up at least 3/4ths of the way up the sides of the pan.
- In food processor or blender, puree remaining ingredients until smooth. Pour over crust.
- Place foil-wrapped pan in a large shallow baking dish.Fill dish halfway with warm water. *I pour the water in AFTER I've put it in the oven, so I don't have to carry it across the kitchen this way!
- Bake for 40 minutes or until cake springs back when you press lightly on top.
- Remove from oven and run a knife around the edge to loosen cake.
- Refrigerate for 4 hours or overnight.
- When ready to serve, release from pan.
- If desired make compote (see notes above) and serve warm over cheesecake. You could also use cherry or strawberry pie filling (YUM!) and spoon that over the cheesecake, too!