Gingerbread Cheesecake

Gingerbread cheesecakeThe New Year is just days away and I bet many of you are still in Christmas-recovery mode.  I know I ate a TON over the holiday, and that will likely not change until after New Year’s Eve when I intend to eat at least twice my body weight.

I did have time on Christmas to make a Gingerbread Cheesecake for a family dinner.  The recipe is fairly standard (as far as cheesecake recipes go) and nothing was at all difficult or unexpected.  I found this to be a great winter flavor and our guests all seemed to agree.

I used Sweetzel Spiced Wafers for my crust (and decorative topping).  As I understand it, these may only be available regionally.  If you cannot find them, gingersnaps would be a good substitution.

I do not use a “water bath” for cheesecake (a common technique to try to reduce cracks in the top of the cheesecake).  I trust that it’ll turn out OK, and if it doesn’t I either find a way to cover cracks (with a topping) or I accept that the flavor will outshine the aesthetics.  Small cracks do not bother me.

Gingerbread Cheesecake
adapted from: Martha Stewart

Gingerbread cheesecake½ c Sweetzel Spiced Wafers (or gingersnap) cookie crumbs
4 T unsalted butter, melted
1 3/4 c granulated sugar, divided
2 pounds cream cheese, room temperature
5 t cornstarch
1 t vanilla extract
4 large eggs, room temperature
¼ c molasses
¼ t salt
1 ½ t ground ginger
1 t ground cinnamon
1 t nutmeg
¼ t ground cloves
½ t grated lemon zest
Extra Sweetzels (or gingerbread cookies) and whipped cream for decoration (optional)

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix together 2 cups ground Sweetzels (or gingersnaps), melted butter, and ¼ cup sugar in a bowl until evenly combined and moist.  Press into the bottom of a springform pan and about one-third of the way up sides of prepared pan. Bake until set, about 10 minutes. Let cool on rack.
  • Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees. Beat cream cheese with a mixer on medium speed until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Beat in cornstarch, the remaining 1 ½ cups sugar, and the vanilla, scraping down sides of bowl as needed.
  • Reduce speed to low. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition and scraping sides of bowl as needed. Beat in molasses, salt, spices, and lemon zest. Pour filling into cooled crust.
  • Transfer to oven, and bake until cheesecake is set but still slightly wobbly in center, 60 to 65 minutes. Carefully remove springform pan from oven and let cool on a wire rack.
  • After about 30 minutes, run a knife around the edges of the cheesecake and loosen springform ring. Refrigerate, uncovered, for at least 8 hours (preferably overnight).
  • Optionally, arrange gingerbread cookies around the cake, using whipped cream* to attach.

*Whipped Cream Topping (optional): using a whisk attachment, combine 1 c heavy whipping cream with 1 T sugar until it becomes whipped cream.

 

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One Response to Gingerbread Cheesecake

  1. Bud says:

    You made it, We ate it. I loved it! A great dessert for the holiday season.

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