Heavenly Lemon Cheesecake

Recipe by mom2alexjake
READY IN: 2hrs 15mins
SERVES: 12-16




  • For the crust: Adjust an oven rack to the lower-middle position and heat the oven to 325 degrees.
  • Press the crumbs firmly and evenly into the pan bottom, keeping the sides as clean as possible.
  • Bake until fragrant and golden brown, 15 to 18 minutes.
  • Cool on wire rack to room temperature, about 30 minutes.
  • When cool, wrap the outside of the pan with two 18-inch-square pieces of heavy-duty foil; set the springform pan in a roasting pan.
  • For the filling: While the crust is cooling, process ¼ cup sugar and lemon zest in a food processor until the sugar is yellow and the zest is broken down, about 15 seconds.
  • Transfer the lemon sugar to a small bowl; add the remaining 1 cup sugar.
  • In a standing mixer, using the paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese on low to soften slightly, about 5 seconds.
  • With the machine running, add the sugar mixture in a slow steady stream; increase the speed to medium and continue to beat until the mixture is creamy and smooth, about 3 minutes.
  • Scrape down the bowl with a rubber spatula as needed.
  • Reduce speed to medium-low and add the eggs one at a time; beat until incorporated-about 30 seconds.
  • Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl well after each addition as needed.
  • Add lemon juice, vanilla, and salt.
  • Mix until just incorporated, about 5 seconds; add the heavy cream and mix until just incorporated, about 5 seconds longer.
  • Give the batter a final scrape, stir with a rubber spatula, and pour into the prepared springform pan; fill the roasting pan with enough hot water to fill halfway up the sides of springform pan.
  • Bake 55 to 60 minutes and until the center jiggles slightly, the sides just start to puff, and the surface is no longer shiny.
  • An instant-read thermometer inserted in the center of the cake should register 150 degrees.
  • Turn off the oven and prop open the oven door with a potholder; allow the cake to cool in the water bath in the oven for 1 hour.
  • Remove foil and the transfer the cake pan to a wire rack; run a small paring knife around the inside edge of the pan to loosen, and cool the cake to room temperature, about 2 hours.
  • For the lemon curd: While the cheesecake bakes, heat the lemon juice in a small nonreactive saucepan over medium heat until hot but not boiling.
  • Whisk the eggs and yolk in a medium nonreactive bowl; gradually whisk in the sugar.
  • Whisking constantly, slowly pour the hot lemon juice into the eggs, then return the mixture to the saucepan and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until the mixture registers 170 degrees on an instant-read thermometer and is thick enough to cling to a spoon, about 3 minutes.
  • Immediately remove the pan from the heat and stir in the cold butter until incorporated; stir in the cream, vanilla, and salt, then pour the curd through a fine-mesh strainer into a small nonreactive bowl.
  • Cover the surface of the curd directly with plastic wrap (not just the bowl- to avoid forming a"skin") refrigerate until needed.
  • To finish the cake: When cheesecake is cool, spread the lemon curd onto the cheesecake using an offset spatula.
  • Spread the curd evenly over the top of the cheesecake.
  • Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or up to 24 hours.
  • To serve, remove the sides of the springform pan and cut into wedges.
  • This is a wonderful but RICH cheesecake, so keep the portions small!