Monday, November 9, 2015

Vanilla Cheesecake With Cherry Topping

Ingredients for 16 servings


For the crust:

¼ cup sugar
¾ cup graham cracker crumbs
2 tablespoons butter, melted
2 teaspoons water

For the filling:

¼ teaspoon salt
1 (8-ounce) carton fat-free sour cream
1 cup sugar
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
2 (8-ounce) blocks 1/3-less-fat cream cheese, softened
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 (8-ounce) blocks fat-free cream cheese, softened
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
4 large eggs

For topping:

½ cup sugar
2/3 cup tawny port or other sweet red wine
2 (10-ounce) bags frozen pitted dark sweet cherries
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
4 teaspoons cornstarch
4 teaspoons water

Directions


Preheat oven to 400°.

To prepare crust, combine first 3 ingredients, tossing with a fork. Add 2 teaspoons water; toss with a fork until moist and crumbly. Gently press mixture into bottom and 1 ½ inches up sides of a 9-inch springform pan coated with cooking spray. Bake at 400° for 5 minutes; cool on a wire rack.

Reduce oven temperature to 325°.

To prepare filling, beat cheeses with a mixer at high speed until smooth. Combine 1 cup sugar, flour, and salt, stirring with a whisk. Add to cheese mixture; beat well. Add sour cream; beat well. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in vanilla extract. Scrape seeds from vanilla bean; stir seeds into cheese mixture, reserving bean halves.

Pour cheese mixture into prepared pan; bake at 325° for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until cheesecake center barely moves when pan is touched. Remove cheesecake from oven; run a knife around outside edge. Cool to room temperature. Cover and chill at least 8 hours.

To prepare topping, combine port, ½ cup sugar, cherries, and reserved vanilla bean halves in a large saucepan; bring to a boil. Cook 5 minutes or until cherries are thawed and mixture is syrupy. Remove vanilla bean halves; discard.

Combine juice, cornstarch, and 4 teaspoons water, stirring with a whisk until well blended. Stir cornstarch mixture into cherry mixture; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer 3 minutes or until mixture is slightly thickened and shiny. Remove from heat; cool to room temperature. Cover and chill. Serve over cheesecake. 
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