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Celebrating Twenty-One Years: Vanilla-Flecked Cheesecake + (an Optional) Quince Jam Smear


Twenty-one years of cheesecakes. If you have been following my blog for awhile, you probably know that I didn't have traditional wedding cake. Instead I opted to have a local-to-me baker make seven different cheesecakes for our reception. So, I've been celebrating our anniversary each year with cheesecake. This year was no different.


But this might be the first year that I was able to find a photo of our cheesecake table.

 
And photos of us cutting the cakes. We look like babies! 

This cheesecake is a little like marriage: there are some compromises. My husband likes Plain and White Cheesecake. I like to shake things up, as evidenced by my Matcha-Yuzu Cheesecake with a Meyer Lemon Gelée or my Lemongrass-Ginger Cheesecake. But, I've figured out that I can make a fairly plain cheesecake that makes him happy - such as my Honey-Lemon Cheesecake - and I can add something zingy that makes me happy.

See! Compromise. That give and take is the secret to a happy marriage. Well, that and something I heard Kevin Bacon say when I saw him perform with his brother several years ago: "The secret to a lasting marriage - keep the sex dirty and the fights clean." Sage advice.


I did add in some flavors that made this a little less than plain. I used beurre noisette in the crust and folded in vanilla paste into the cheesecake. Then I topped my slice with quince jam from a local shop. 


Everyone else had theirs plain and white.

Ingredients
Beurre Noisette [bur nwah-zet] noun, French Cookery. 
Literally 'butter the color of a hazelnut.'

Browned butter is one of those magical ingredients that transforms the flavor of just about anything be it sweet or savory. Its nutty taste and aroma are out of this world. And it can add a creative twist to any recipe that includes butter.

Crust
  • 3 cups crushed graham crackers
  • 8 Tablespoons beurre noisette (browned butter)*
  • 2 Tablespoons organic granulated sugar

Filling
  • 3 - 8 ounce packages cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 cup organic granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 cups organic sour cream
  • 1 Tablespoon pure vanilla bean paste

Topping
  • 2 cups organic sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla bean paste
  • 1 Tablespoon organic granulated sugar

For Serving, optional
  • quince jam
  • organic flowers

Procedure

Crust
*To make beurre noisette: place butter in a pan over medium heat. Swirl the pan occasionally to be sure the butter is cooking evenly. As the butter melts, it will foam and begin to darken. The color will progress from a pale lemon yellow to golden straw hue and, finally, to a hazelnut brown. Once you achieve the color and aroma you want, pour the beurre noisette into a glass container. The milk solids will continue to brown - and eventually burn - if you leave it in the pan.


Mix all of the ingredients together until moist clumps form. Press crumb mixture onto bottom and up sides of a springform pan that's been wrapped in foil. Chill crust while preparing filling.

Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.


Filling
Beat cream cheese in large bowl until fluffy. Beat in sugar. Beat in eggs 1 at a time. Mix in sour cream and vanilla paste.


Transfer filling to prepared crust. Place springform pan in large roasting pan or a rimmed baking sheet. If your springform fits in the roasting pan, pour enough boiling water into roasting pan to come halfway up sides of springform pan.


Bake until cheesecake puffs around edges, about 1 hour 15 minutes. Turn off oven. Let cake stand in oven 1 hour, leaving oven door ajar.


Topping
Mix the ingredients together in a bowl until well combined. Spread this evenly over the cheesecake and bake in a 350 degrees Fahrenheit oven again for 6 to 8 minutes. Transfer cake to rack. Run knife around pan sides to loosen cake. Cool completely.

Remove foil from pan sides. Cover cake and chill overnight. (Can be made 2 days ahead. Keep refrigerated.) Remove pan sides to serve.


For Serving, optional
Add a smear of quince jam on top of a slice. Garnish with organic flowers. I used geranium from our garden.

I do make cheesecakes throughout the year, but it's usually for our anniversary that I actually get around to photographing and writing down a recipe. Enjoy.

Comments

  1. Check out your new theme! It looks great! Happy anniversary!

    ReplyDelete

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