This weeks recipe, provided by Rachael and SoNo, features a dessert! Not just any dessert, but one of Rachael’s favorite cheesecake recipes! I personally haven’t had much success in baking cheesecake, but I did buy a springform pan a couple of years ago…so it’s about time I try it again. The combination of pistachios, raspberry, vanilla, and apricot sounds very interesting to me, and it makes such a beautiful dish! Give it a try, and let us know what you think!
**Rachael left this comment on the post, but I’m adding it here to make sure everyone sees it! “I know it says not to use a springform, but I always do! Just make sure, if you use a springform, to wrap it up tightly in tinfoil (the extra wide is best so there aren’t seams) so that the water bath doesn’t seep in!”
Raspberry Pistachio Cheesecake
Pistachio Graham Cracker Crust
- ¼ cup shelled, unsalted pistachios
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- ¼ teaspoon coarse salt
- 1 ¼ cups graham cracker crumbs
- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
- 2 pounds cream cheese, at room temperature for at least 6 hours
- 1 1/3 cups granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon coarse salt
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon vanilla paste, or seeds from 1 whole vanilla bean
- 5 large eggs, at room temperature
- 2/3 cup sour cream
- ½ cup apricot jam
- ½ cup shelled, unsalted pistachios, pulsed in a food processor until coarsely ground
- 3 (1/2-pint) containers raspberries
- Confectioners’ sugar, for dusting (optional)
1. Preheat the oven to 300°F. Bring water to a boil for a water bath. Butter the bottom and sides of a 9 by 2-inch cake pan; set aside.
2. To make the crust: In a food processor, pulse the pistachios with the sugar and the salt until coarsely ground. Transfer to a large bowl, add the graham cracker crumbs and butter, and mix to combine. Press the graham cracker mixture over the bottom of the buttered pan. Set aside.
3. To make the filling: In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese, sugar, salt, vanilla extract, and vanilla paste or seeds on medium-high speed, scraping down the bowl several times, until the mixture is completely smooth, about 5 minutes.
4. Turn the mixer to low and beat in the eggs one at a time, until blended, scraping down the sides of the bowl after each addition. Beat in the sour cream until blended.
5. Place the cake pan in a roasting pan. Pour the cream cheese mixture into the cake pan-it will come all of the way to the top of the pan. Place the roasting pan in the oven and pour in the boiling water to come about ½ inch up the sides of the cake pan. Bake until the filling is set but still jiggles slightly in the center, 1 hour 15 minutes to 1 hour 20 minutes. Remove from the water bath and let cool to room temperature. Chill for 4 to 6 hours, or overnight, in the pan.
6. To finish, heat the bottom of the pan over a flame or an electric element to loosen the crust. Invert the pan onto a 9-inch cake round or large plate. Remove the pan from the cake and invert once more onto a 9-inch round or large plate so the crust is on the bottom. In a small saucepan, warm the strained jam over low heat until liquid. Strain through a fine strainer. Brush the top and sides of the cheesecake with the strained jam. Cover the top of the cake with a single layer of raspberries. Holding the cake with one hand under the bottom, and working over a sheet pan to catch the excess, gently press the ground pistachios all around the side of the cake. Dust with confectioners’ sugar, if desired.
TECHNIQUE TIP: Cheesecakes are traditionally made in springform pans wrapped in aluminum foil and placed in a water bath. Water often leaks into the pans, creating a soggy crust. Instead, as with this recipe, try making cheesecakes in a regular cake pan to ensure that water won’t leak into the pan. To serve the cake, remove it from the refrigerator, then heat it over a flame or electric element just enough to warm the sugar and butter in the crust; invert the pan and the cake will release easily.