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Cheesecake is a dessert consisting of a creamy filling usually containing cheese baked in a pastry or pressed-crumb shell.
There are several different recipes for cheesecake and this usually depends on the region the cake was baked in as well as the cultural background of the person baking it. These cheesecakes are typically baked before serving.
In the United States July 30 has been unofficially declared National Cheesecake Day.
Cheesecakes are perfect for parties, and with so many variations from which to choose, you will be able to make everybody happy!
There is a basic, traditional recipe for cheesecake made with a graham cracker crust and then not only variations in the crust, but also different flavors in the cheesecake. Everything from plain cheesecake to hot fudge oreo cheesecake can be made.
Basic Cheesecake Recipe
There are 3 steps to a basic cheesecake recipe.
1) Mix 2-8 oz. packages cream cheese with 1/2 cup sugar and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla. I use my electric mixer and mix until smooth. Add 2 eggs and mix until blended.
2) Pour into an already prepared graham cracker crust. (either home-made or purchased)
3) Bake at 350 degrees F for 40 minutes. Make sure center is set by inserting a toothpick. If it comes out clean, it is done. Cool and refrigerate 3 hours or overnight.
Graham Cracker Crust
Oreo Cookie Crust
Variations of Cheesecake Crusts
Basic Graham Cracker Crust
This recipe is from the Honey Maid graham crackers box.
1 individual pack graham crackers (about 1 2/3 cups crumbs)
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup softened butter
Finely roll graham crackers and pour into a bowl. Add sugar and butter. Blend with your fingers or fork.Place crumbs into 9 inch pie plate or spring form pan. Set an 8 inch pie plate on top of crumbs and press firmly on bottom and sides of 9 inch pie plate.
Bake in a moderate oven 375 degrees F 8 minutes. Cool on wire rack.
Substitute 12 Lorna Doone shortbread cookies for graham crackers.
Substitute 12 chocolate wafer cookies.
Substitute 12 gingersnaps.
Substitute 12 vanilla wafer cookies.
Substitute 12 Oreo cookies.
Strawberry Shortcake Cheesecake
Key Lime Cheesecake
Variations of Cheesecake
Cappuccino - Stir in 1 teaspoon instant coffee powder with the eggs.
Chocolate chip - Stir 6 oz chocolate chips after cheesecake mixture is blended.
Cranberry-Orange - Add 1/4 teaspoon orange zest and 1 can (16 oz) whole berry cranberry sauce. Garnish with orange slices.
Chocolate-Raspberry - Add 8 oz raspberries to mixture and swirl chocolate syrup throughout before baking.
Strawberry Shortcake - Add 8 oz strawberries blended with 1 Tablespoon strawberry jam. Top with whipped topping after cooled. Use shortbread cookies for crust.
Tropical Punch - Use a gingersnap crust. Add 1/4 teaspoon lime zest to cheesecake mixture. Top cheesecake with a mixture of 1 can pineapple chunks (drained and chopped), 2 kiwis (chopped) and 1 Tablespoon apple jelly. Top with coconut and maraschino cherries.
Key Lime - Add 1/2 cup key lime juice, increase sugar to 1 1/4 cups and add 1/2 cup sour cream to cream cheese mixture.
Chocolate Candy - Use chocolate cookie crust. Stir 2 Tablespoons M & M's into mixture. Drizzle with hot fudge sauce. Sprinkle with chopped Milky Ways and mini-M & M's.
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