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Sugar Dish Me

"if you can read, you can cook" -my momma

Let Them Eat (Cheese) Cake!

with 3 comments

Yesterday was my littlest brother’s 16th birthday!!!! Sixteen- WHAAAAT??? That’s crazy. That means he can drive a car. But in my head Spencer (that’s my little brother) is forever four years old driving toy cars around the living room. He is  the little kid with the giant blue eyes and the skinny little legs that stays up watching Jurassic Park in the middle of the night.

So Spencer has gotten bigger (he’s taller than me!) and I don’t think he watches Jurassic Park 5 times a week anymore, but some things have not changed. Like the request for my birthday cooking— he’s 16 years old and that is still holding strong. I actually find it very flattering that when I ask him what he wants for his birthday he tells me “cheesecake!”

Happy sigh.

I have found that most people WILL NOT attempt cheesecake at home. It’s like the Holy Grail of desserts that people will buy but not try to make.

Chad and I went to the bookstore this past weekend. I love the bookstore. I love coffee. And as soon as you walk into the bookstore your senses are bombarded with smooth glossy pages begging to be turned, that sound the spine of a brand new book being cracked open for the first time makes, display after display of bestsellers and educational toys, and the smell of coffee. I am seduced by the bookstore coffee bar everytime. Chad knows this, so he takes my arm, looks down at me and says, “Coffee?”

Yesss.

We get in the line- you know, the line where they make you stand in front of the giant glass case full of desserts that you do not need to eat at 11 o’clock in the morning? That line. We’re standing there talking ourselves out of cranberry cheese muffins and blueberry scones when I look in the bottom of the dessert case and spot a whole row of cheesecake- name brand cheesecake which means that it’s not freshly made but frozen and then thawed. It still looks beautiful though… until I look at the price. $4.95 a slice or $40 for a whole cake. Yes, I said FORTY DOLLARS.

That my friends is much crazier than Spencer being 16.

You CAN make cheesecake at home. It will not cost you anywhere near $40. And then your families will ask you to make it, too.

Graham cracker crumbs, brown sugar, and butter make an easy graham cracker crust. I lined my 9X13 cake pan with foil so I could easily take the whole cake out to cut and serve- sort of like a make-shift springform pan. Bake the crust for 10 minutes on 325 and then set aside.

In a large bowl mix together softened cream cheese, brown sugar, and vanilla.

Mix in the sour cream. I always use light sour cream. I can’t tell the difference between that and the real deal, so you might as well cut a few calories where you can!

Then you will add eggs one at a time, only blending until they are just combined. One secret to cheesecake is don’t over- mix!

Pour the  batter over the graham cracker crust, scraping down the sides of the bowl as you go to get every bit of cheesecake goodness into the cake pan.

Now your unbaked cheesecake needs toppings.

Toss chopped apples and pecans with some cinnamon and a little more brown sugar.

Sprinkle the apple pecan mixture evenly across the top of the cake and then bake at 325 for 65 minutes.

Easy Cheesy Apple Pecan Cheesecake

Ingredients

For the crust: 1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs

1/2 stick melted butter

2 tablespoons brown sugar

For the cake:   4 (8 )ounce packages of cream cheese, softened (use the light cream cheese if you like)

1 cup sour cream (the light version can be substituted here, too!)

1 cup packed brown sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla

4 large eggs

For the top:     3 apples (use a firm apple like granny smith or honey crisp), peeled, cored, and coarsely chopped

1 cup coarsely chopped pecans

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 cup brown sugar

To Make

Preheat the oven to 325 and line a 9X13 pan with foil (or lightly grease the bottom and sides). In a small bowl combine the graham cracker crumbs, 2 tablespoons of brown sugar, and melted butter with a fork. Press the crum mixture evenly across the bottom of the prepared pan and bake for 10 minutes. Set crust aside. In a large bowl mix together 1 cup brown sugar, cream cheese, and vanilla. Then mix in the sour cream. Add the eggs one at a time until just combined. Pour batter over the crust. Toss the apples and pecans with cinnamon and 1/2 cup brown sugar and then sprinkle the mixture evenly over the cake batter. Bake at 325 for 65 minutes. Let the cake cool completely at room temperature and then refrigerate for several hours before serving.

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Written by Heather @ Sugar Dish Me

December 1, 2011 at 3:53 pm

3 Responses

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  1. This was the best! Thank-goodness Spencer ate most of it!

    Peggy Campbell

    December 1, 2011 at 6:09 pm

  2. […] my knee and smudged rainy dirt on my jeans, but that morning both the bottle of wine AND the cheesecake came out unscathed (which is more than I can say for my […]

  3. […] my knee and smudged rainy dirt on my jeans, but that morning both the bottle of wine AND the cheesecake came out unscathed (which is more than I can say for my […]


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