Thursday, June 3, 2010

Basically Delicious Cheesecake

My mother was a fabulous cook, and my Dad knew it. He made sure she always had whatever ingredients she needed to make wonderful meals and desserts for us when I was growing up. My parents lived through the Depression years and had often gone without food we take for granted today, eating only the most basic food items like beans, potatoes and bologna as children. When they married and left those years behind, my Dad vowed never to go hungry again. He made sure our shelves and freezer were stocked with plenty of good things to eat and cook with. And my mother would cook and bake to her heart's content.
One thing we all especially loved was Cheesecake. It seemed like the ultimate indulgence, with its rich, creamy texture and buttery graham cracker crust. There are many versions out there, but I like my cheesecake simple. Here is my favorite cheesecake recipe, which I am calling:

1 1/2 c. Honeymaid brand graham cracker crumbs (I buy them already crushed now)
3 Tbsp. sugar
4. Tbsp. butter, melted
3 8oz. pkg. Philadelphia brand cream cheese
1 c. Breakstone's or Knudsen's sour cream
1 c. granulated sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
2 tsp. grated lemon peel
4 eggs
1 c. Breakstone or Knudsen's sour cream

Preheat over to 325 degrees
Mix melted butter, 3 Tbsp. sugar and graham cracker crumbs together in a bowl, and press into the bottom and a little up the sides of a springform pan.

Beat together : cream cheese, sour cream, 1 c. sugar, lemon peel and vanilla until smooth. Pour over crust in springform pan.

Bake for 55 min or until set. Let cool. Remove sides from springform pan and put cheesecake on serving plate. Top with 1 c. sour cream.

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