Thursday, June 25, 2009

Brown Sugar-Apple Cheesecake

Not surprisingly, this cheesecake was extremely delicious. But I have yet to meet a cheesecake I didn't like! Well there was the Godiva chocolate cheesecake from The Cheesecake Factory but I think I still ate that. (Which made me think I didn't like chocolate cheesecake but then I made this rich chocolate cheesecake that convinced me otherwise.) Anyway, this cheesecake is really creamy and luscious. It's like apple pie in cheesecake form, and since I'm not a big fruit pie person I would definitely go for this over apple pie any day! I will definitely be making it again.

The recipe suggests you cut the apples into eighths but I found the slices too fat (they weren't able to soften enough) so I'd just suggest slicing the apples a bit thinner. And to make it look prettier, I'd put additional apple slices on top of the cheesecake next time like Confections of a Foodie Bride. Also, make sure not to over bake the crust. I always want to bake it for longer than it says but this time it resulted in a super hard crust which I couldn't cut through very easily. I took this cake to serve at Easter dinner with my boyfriend's family (an indication of how far behind I am in posting food I've made!) and the slices ended up a mess because I couldn't get the crust to go with it. Once I got it home I was able to figure things out and chop through the hard crust though.

Abby loves sleeping behind the computer monitor. And yes we have our monitor propped up on the yellow pages!

If this sounds good, you might also like:
Cinnamon-Apple Scones
Lemon Cheesecake
Apple Pie with Brown Sugar Streusel Topping
Applesauce Spice Bars

Brown Sugar-Apple Cheesecake
Adapted from Baking: From My Home to Yours

For the Crust:
30 gingersnaps
2 tbsp light brown sugar
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 stick (4 tbsp) unsalted butter, melted

For the Apples:
1/2 stick (4 tbsp) unsalted butter
3 large apples, peeled, cored and cut into eighths
2 tbsp (packed) light brown sugar

For the Filling:
3 8-ounce packages) cream cheese, at room temperature
3/4 cup (packed) light brown sugar
6 tbsp sugar
3 tbsp apple juice
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
2 tsp ground cinnamon
3 large eggs
3/4 cup sour cream
1/3 cup heavy cream

To Make the Crust:
Butter the bottom and sides of a 10-inch springform pan. (I think I used a 9 inch springform pan.)

Put the gingersnaps in a food processor and whir until you have crumbs; you should have a scant 2 cups. (If you are using graham cracker crumbs, just put them in the food processor.) Pulse in the sugar and cinnamon, if you're using it, then pour over the melted butter and pulse until the crumbs are moistened. Turn the crumbs into the springform pan and, using your fingertips, firmly press them evenly over the bottom and up the sides of the pan as far as they'll go. Put the pan in the freezer while you preheat the oven.

Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 350F.

Remove the pan from the freezer and wrap the bottom tightly in aluminum foil, going up the sides. Place the pan on a baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes, or until the crust is set and lightly browned. Transfer to a rack to cool while you make the apples and the filling. Leave the oven at 350F.

To Make the Apples:
Melt 2 tablespoons of the butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. When the foam subsides, toss in half of the apple slices and cook, turning once, until they are golden brown, about 3 minutes. Sprinkle the apples with 1 tablespoon of the sugar and cook them, turning, just until coated, another minute or so. Scrape the apples onto a plate, wipe out the skillet and repeat with the remaining apples. Let the apples cool while you make the filling.

Getting Ready to Bake:
Have a roasting pan large enough to hold the springform pan at hand. Boil a kettle of water.

To Make the Filling:
Working with a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese on medium speed, scraping down the bowl often, for about 4 minutes, or until it is velvety smooth. Add the sugars and beat for another 2 minutes. Beat in the cider, vanilla, and cinnamon. Reduce the speed to low and beat in the eggs one by one, beating for 1 minute after each egg goes in. Finally, beat in the sour cream and heavy cream, beating just until the batter is smooth.

Pour about one third of the batter into the baked crust. Drain the apples by lifting them off the plate with a slotted spoon or spatula, and spoon them into the pan. Cover with the remaining batter and, if needed, jiggle the pan to even the top. Place the springform pan in the roasting pan and pour in enough boiling water to come halfway up the sides of the springform pan.

Bake the cheesecake for 1 hour and 30 minutes to 2 hours (I baked mine for 2 hours), covering the cake loosely with a foil tent at the 45-minute mark. The cake will rise evenly and crack around the edges, and it should be fully set except it will jiggle slightly in the center. Gently transfer the cake to a cooling rack, remove the aluminum foil and let it cool to room temperature, then refrigerate it for at least 6 hours; overnight is better.

Run a blunt knife around the edges of the pan to loosen the crust, open the pan's latch and release and remove the sides.


Anonymous said...

The texture of that looks unbelievably PERFECT! It would be very dangerous for me to try this...

The Duo Dishes said...

OMG. How do you manage to have these things in your house? If we made stuff like this all the time, we'd be in t-r-o-u-b-l-e.

Ricki said...

Just when I thought there couldn't possibly be any more variations on cheesecake for you to make. . . there's THIS!!! Yums. And that Abby, what a little scamp!

Deborah said...

I'm pretty sure I'd be in heaven with a slice of this!

Juliana said...

This cheesecake with apples looks delicious...yummie, would like to have a bite of it.

Steph said...

I was going to make this when I was deciding what cheesecake to bring, but then i thought I would play it safe and go with plain. It looks really good Ashley! I tend to bake my crusts a little longer because I have a real problem with soggy crusts.

That looks like a nice, decadent slice!

Anonymous said...

Awe Abby is so pretty!

You know I've always passed by the Cheesecake factory. Never went in. There is always a long line to get in the door. The wait for it there is normally at least 40 minutes....:-(

Sorry, for the late reply to your comment on my blog. I haven't been the timely blogger lately...

I should really try putting green onions & curry powder into my egg sandwich. I'm planning on making it again for today's lunch.

Loomis' ears are so cute! They flop so much. haha.

I have mixed feelings on the size of the apartment fitting for the dog. I feel that as long as you take him/her out frequently for walks/runs/dog parks, he/she should be fine. I find that Loomy sleeps in most of the time he's home, but then again maybe that's because he's a puppy still.

Anywho, wish you luck! Also think how cute it would be your pup and Abby sleeping together :-)

Grace said...

oh man. this looks soo good to me, and i'm not generally a fan of cheesecake at all. what a stellar creation, and your execution of this lengthy recipe doesn't appear to be beatable. fantastic.

Sara said...

oh my, that looks the like the perfect cheesecake.

Johanna said...

looks delicious - I love the idea of ginger snap base with the apples - and we have a monitor which is propped up by yellow pages - I have learnt when I can't find zinc to check behind it

Bren said...

great stuff here! i'm not a huge cheeseckake fan, but apple and brown sugar, i'll take it... the imperfection of the front looks so real and appetizing!

Hannah said...

Sounds like a perfect recipe to hold on to for Thanksgiving or Christmas!

Erin said...

What a beautiful slice! I loved this when I made it.

Vegetation said...

I love anything cheesecake and this one looks incredibly delicious!!

Cookie baker Lynn said...

Apple pie cheesecake - wow! I know several people who would be my willing slave for life if I made this for them. Oh, the power I'll wield! Bwaaahaaahaa! (Excuse me, got carried away there. I'll go bake now.)

Karine said...

I want a huge piece of that cheesecake! :)

Anonymous said...

aw abby is so pretty!

Justine said...

what a lovely combination- it sounds so delicious!

Stacy said...

This looks sooooo delicious!!! I have never heard of it before but I think I would LOVE it!!! My husband gave it the two thumbs up as well, so I know he's totally into it too! Thanks for sharing!

Liz said...

Wow! This cheesecake is just gorgeous. Mmm! apples, brown sugar and cream cheese...

Lisa said...

Goodness, I don't eat desserts very often but cheesecake I can never resist. Just gorgeous Ashley!

Colleen said...

Wow what a great idea! This is very impressive!

Kevin said...

That apple cheesecake looks so good!

pigpigscorner said...

Gorgeous cake! Love everything about it!

Megan B said...

I'd like to try this, but the only baking pan I have right now is a loaf pan. I thought I'd probably have to cut the recipe in half. Any thoughts on making this work?

eatme_delicious said...

Megan B: Yea you could cut the recipe in half and make it in a loaf pan. Though I'm not sure how successfully you'd get it out in one piece. Maybe you could line the pan with parchment paper or aluminum foil, and after it's done baking and cooling you can lift the whole thing out with the parchment paper?

Amanda W. said...

Hi! I love your blog. I tried to make this last night in preparation of thanksgiving, and it turned out great except for a few small things. I baked it without a water bath because I didnt have a pan large enough to fit the 9 inch springform. It all seemed to be going well, except at 1hr 45 min the whole thing was kind of jiggly. I thought it wasnt done so I put it in for another 15 minutes. the top became a dark brown and the crust burnt. Is that because I didnt use the water bath?

eatme_delicious said...

Amanda W: I don't think the top being dark brown would have anything to do with the water bath. If whatever you're baking is getting too brown but you want to bake it longer because it's not done, you can put aluminum foil over the top. As for the burnt crust, that one could be due to the water bath but I'm not sure. Sorry to hear that it didn't turn out as well as you'd hoped! I hope the cheesecake filling part of it was good!

Emily @ Foodie/Nutritionist said...

Cannot even put into words how amazing this looks. I am definitely making this within the next week. Can't. Wait.

Emily @ Foodie/Nutritionist said...

I made this!! Your step-by-step directions were really great and easy to follow (I'm not much of a baker).

Here's my post:


elizabeth said...

Made this from the recipe here this weekend! It turned out terrific! I will be bringing it to my family Thanksgiving celebration this year. I think the filling could use a little less cinnamon. But otherwise it was perfect. Took a while to make but the directions made it easy as long as you followed closely. I baked it for 2 hours since I used a 9" pan.

eatme_delicious said...

elizabeth: Hope your family likes it!