It's no secret that we love our cheesecakes around here! Here's a citrus-y delicious cheesecake that made a big hit at a prime rib dinner this Spring. We've made it a few times since then and it is always a welcome addition.
You could easily substitute lime or orange for the lemon in this recipe and come out with a winner each time!
PS: That's a lovely blueberry syrup poured over the piece in the picture. Blueberry and lemon are a favorite combination of ours.
Set one oven rack in the bottom position and another to the center position. Preheat the oven to 350°. Spray the bottom and sides of 9-inch spring-form pan evenly with nonstick cooking spray.
For the crust: Combine the graham cracker chunks and sugar in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse until the mixture resembles course sand. Place the mixture in a medium mixing bowl and add the chopped nuts, stirring to combine. Stir in the melted butter. Using your hand or a flat-bottomed glass, press the mixture onto the bottom of your prepared spring-form pan. Bake the crust until fragrant and the edges are browned, about 10-15 minutes. Cool the crust on a wire rack while making the filling.
For the filling: In a stand mixer with a paddle mixer, beat the cream cheese and sugar until smooth. One at a time, add the eggs, combining well between each addition. Add in the lemon juice, lemon peel, vanilla and lemon extract, beating just until blended. Pour the filling into spring-form pan and smooth surface.
Set a roasting pan in the center of the bottom oven rack and pour enough boiling water into it to come about halfway up the sides. Place the cheesecake on the middle oven rack directly above the roasting pan. Bake for 55 minutes or until the center is almost set. Remove the cheesecake from the oven and set it on a cooling rack for 5 minutes.
For the topping: Combine the sour cream, sugar, lemon peel, vanilla and lemon extract. Spread the topping over filling. Return the cheesecake to the oven for 10 minutes.
Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Carefully run a knife around edge of pan to loosen, then let it cool 1 hour longer. Refrigerate overnight. Remove sides of pan. Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes before slicing.