Oh how I love a good cheesecake! I have tried many a cheesecake out there, some great, some good and some not so good. Some are kind of dense and dry others too light and fluffy. Some have crust and some don’t. To me the perfect cheesecake has to have a good crust, must be fairly dense but also smooth and creamy and have a perfect balance of flavors.
I have had this recipe for as long as I can remember. I think that I got it from my mom, who got it from a coworker about 30 years ago. I am not sure who created the original recipe but it has always been my most favorite.
I have tried other recipes out there but they are never quite as good. It has a crunchy, nutty crust and is dense but also smooth and creamy with the perfect balance of flavors. It is perfect plain and even better with a fruit topping. The hint of lemon in this cheesecake is perfect with a cooked berry topping like blueberry or blackberry. Sometimes I just serve it with fresh sliced strawberries tossed with a bit of sugar.
- 2 cups graham cracker crumbs
- 1/2 cup finely ground walnuts
- 4 tablespoons sugar
- 1-1/2 teaspoons grated lemon rind
- 3/4 cup melted butter
- 3- 8 ounce packages cream cheese
- 1 cup sugar
- 1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla
- 4 teaspoons lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons grated lemon rind
- 4 eggs
- 1 pint of ice cold sour cream
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
Crust- combine all ingredients with a fork, then line the bottom and part way up the side of spring-form pan with crumb mixture. Bake in 350 degree oven for 10 minutes.
Filling- beat cream cheese on medium speed until creamy, gradually adding sugar. Then add vanilla, lemon juice and lemon rind and blend well. Slowly add eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Beat at medium speed 10 minutes (no less) until fluffy. Pour filling into crust lined pan and bake at 300 degrees for 1-1/2 hours. Check occasionally during the last half hour to see if it is set and no longer runny. when it it no longer runny is done. Leave oven door open while making the topping.
Topping- combine sour cream, sugar and vanilla, whip for 10 minutes at high speed, until foamy. Put on top of baked cheesecake and bake at 250 degrees for ten minutes. Turn off oven and let cake sit in the oven with the door open for 1 to 2 hours. Chills thoroughly before serving.