This cherry cheesecake recipe lives up to the title. It is rich, smooth and creamy. The recipe was found among some recipes found at an estate sale. The handwriting was poor so some blanks had to be filled in. The previous owner of the recipe apparently made this recipe quite a lot. The card itself was yellowed, stained and bore the fingerprints of the baker. Judging by my family’s reaction, the blanks were filled in correctly. The recipe did not call for a topping layer.
To decide on the topping layer, blueberry season was past in Florida. There is no cherry season in Florida and they are fairly expensive. But, due to COVID-19, the grocery store only had frozen cherries. Therefore, cherry-topped cheesecake that is rich & creamy was the result. The topping can easily be omitted but, since I am not a cheesecake aficionado, cherry cheesecake seemed more palatable.
Palate is very subjective. For instance, I have a very sweet palate. The addition of more sweetness by adding a sweet topping to create a cherry cheesecake makes a cheesecake dish much more palatable. If you don’t need the additional sweetness, check out this recipe for a New York Style cheesecake from Bake From Scratch. If you are looking for blueberry flavor check out this Blueberry Crumble recipe. Both this cherry cheesecake recipe and the one from Bake from Scratch are a far cry from the origins of Cheesecake.
A Little History:
Cheesecake can be traced back 2000 years to Greece. Greek cheesecake was made with goat or sheep cheese and sweetened with honey. Similar to the Greek cheesecake, traditional Italian cheesecake is only sweetened with honey and the cheese is a blend of mascarpone and ricotta cheeses. Italian cheesecakes trace their ancestry back to ancient Rome. In addition to these early forerunners, other types of cheesecakes include Basque Cheesecake from the Basque region of Spain, Chicago-style cheesecake hailing from, where else, Chicago, Illinois, and the jiggly Japanese Cotton Cheesecake.
- The recipe did not include a water bath. I included one and it produced a crack free cheesecake.
- Do not over-mix, over mixing leads to cracks.
- Use room temperature ingredients. They incorporate better ans produce a smoother batter.
- When making the crust, a lot of recipes suggest using the bottom of a straight sided measuring cup to press the crust flat onto the bottom of the pan. For myself, a baggy with my hand inside seems easier.
Cherry Cheesecake (Rich & Creamy)
- Measuring spoons
- Measuring Cups
- Stand mixer
- 9" Springform pan
- Roasting pan
Graham Cracker Crust
- 2 cups chocolate graham cracker crumbs
- 1/2 cup butter softened
- 2 tablespoons Table Sugar
- 32 ounces cream cheese 4-8 ounce packages
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons corn starch
- 1 cup sour cream
- 10 ounce frozen cherries let them thaw in the refrigerator
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon almond extract
- 1/4 cup butter
- 2 tablespoons corn starch
- 1/4 cup cold water
For The Crust:
- In a medium size bowl, Combine the graham cracker crumbs, butter and sugar.
- Mix until the butter is distributed through the crumbs and no dry crumbs appear.
- Press crumb mixture into the bottom and up the sides of a 9" springform pan.
- Refrigerate for an hour or more.
For The Filling:
- Preheat oven to 450°F.
- In the bowl of a Stand Mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix the cream cheese and sugar until smooth.
- Beat in the eggs, vanilla and cornstarch. Mix just until blended; do not over mix.
- Stir in the sour cream by hand.
- Pour filling mixture into the prepared crust.
- Wrap The bottom of the spring form pan in foil and place the wrapped pan in a roasting pan.
- Place hot water in the roasting pan; make sure water does not go above the foil.
- Place roasting pan with spring form pan in the oven.
- Bake at 450°F for 8 minutes and then reduce the heat to 200°F and bake an additional 40 minutes.
- Turn off oven and let cheesecake continue to bake for an additional 3 hours.
- Remove from the oven, let cool, wrap in plastic and place the refrigerator overnight.
For the Cherry Topping:
- In a saucepan, combine cherries, butter, cinnamon, nutmeg, almond extract and sugar and let simmer over low heat.
- Stir the 2 tablespoons of corn starch in a 1/4 cup of water until dissolved.
- Bring the cherry mixture to a low boil.
- Stir the corn starch into the boiling cherry mixture and continue stirring until mixture thickens to a pie filling thickness.
- Remove from heat and let topping cool slightly.
- Pour over cheesecake and serve with whipped topping, if desired.