Makes: 1 9-inch cheesecake
4 250 g packages cream cheese at room temperature
1 1/4 cups sugar
3 Tbsp cornstarch
1 Tbsp vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
2 tsp finely grated lemon zest
3 large eggs at room temperature
1/2 cup sour cream
1 ½ cups sour cream
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
2. For the crust, stir the graham crumbs, sugar and melted butter until evenly combined and press this into the bottom of an ungreased 9-inch springform pan. Bake this for 10 minutes, then cool. Brush the sides of the pan with a little melted butter.
2. For the filling, increase the oven temperature to 400°F. Beat cream cheese until very fluffy and smooth, scraping down the sides of the bowl often. Gradually add the sugar while beating, again, scraping down the sides of the pan often. Beat in the cornstarch, vanilla and lemon zest. Add the eggs one at a time on a lower speed, waiting until egg is fully incorporated before adding the next. On low speed, beat in the sour cream. Scrape batter into the pan and bake for 10 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 300°F and bake for 30 minutes.
3. While the cheesecake is baking, prepare the topping, Stir the sour cream, sugar and vanilla together until the sugar dissolves. While the cheesecake is just from the oven, carefully and gently spread the sour cream topping over cheesecake, taking care not to tear the surface of the cheesecake. Return to the oven and bake 15 minutes. Within 30 minutes of removing the cheesecake from the oven, run a spatula or knife gently around the edge of the cheesecake, to loosen it (this will prevent any cracking). Cool cheesecake to room temperature and chill overnight.
4. To serve, remove springform pan ring and slice with a hot, dry knife. Serve with fresh berries or a fruit compote, such as this blueberry compote (recipe follows)
1. Bring the blueberries, apple, sugar, citrus juice, zest and cinnamon up to a simmer over medium heat, stirring occasionally, cooking until the blueberries are soft and tender, about 10 minutes.
2. Whisk the cornstarch with a few tablespoons of cold water and add this to the blueberry compote, stirring and returning to a simmer until the filling has thickened and is glossy. Set aside to cool to room temperature, then chill until ready to use.