Oh my. This cake. Oh. This cake was just so good. Allow me to tell you about how this cake came to be. See, I live in the South where peaches are abundant. Every summer, us Southerners just go crazy with the peach recipes…or just eating them plain. Well, it occurred to me that peach season is coming to an end, and I hadn’t even eaten a single peach this summer! This is a travesty. But have no fear, an occasion arose where I was called upon to make a dessert (Sunday School party on the lake – yes!). I thought about doing the typical peach cobbler or pie, but I don’t know, I just wanted to do something unique. Whenever I cook for a party or something I like to make things that stand out in their minds. Everybody around these parts has had their fair share of peach cobblers and pies, but when I ran across a recipe for peach cheesecake, it was something new to me, and I figured it would be new to them too.
Thus, the idea for the peach cheesecake was born. I am so glad that I made this! It was a HUGE hit at the party. And I’ve made several desserts for this same group of people before (like Key Lime Cheesecake Bars, Strawberry Pretzel Salad, and Fudge Lovers Strawberry Truffle Cake), and I think this one was their favorite. It got totally devoured and everyone was raving about it, asking for the web address to my food blog.
I’ll admit, I was a little nervous about making “peach compote” because, let’s be honest, I don’t know what a compote is. But it seemed simple enough. And this cheesecake wasn’t all that hard to make. It’s not like something you can whip up in 20 minutes or anything, but the instructions are easy to follow. My only problem with it was that I had to cook my cheesecake about 25 minutes longer than it said. And also, the original recipe called for a gingersnap crust, I didn’t want to use that so instead I used shortbread cookies. It was a delicious crust, but I think I’m partial to the classic graham cracker crust. Try out different ones and see which kind you like best!
- 25 gingersnap cookies (about 6 ounces), coarsely broken (I used shortbread cookies, the amount is the same and the crust directions are the same)
- 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted
- 4 small peaches (about 1 1/4 pounds), peeled, pitted, sliced 1/4 inch thick
- 2 tablespoons plus 1 1/4 cups sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
- 4 8-ounce packages cream cheese, room temperature
- 4 large eggs
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup peach preserves
- 1 1/2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 large peach, peeled, pitted, very thinly sliced
- For crust Preheat oven to 350°F. Grind gingersnaps in processor to coarse crumbs. Add butter and blend until evenly moistened. Press crumbs over bottom and 1 inch up sides of 9-inch-diameter springform pan with 2 3/4-inch-high sides. Bake crust until beginning to brown, about 8 minutes. Cool on rack. Reduce oven temperature to 325°F.
- For filling Combine peaches, 2 tablespoons sugar and lemon juice in heavy large saucepan. Cover and cook over medium-high heat until sugar dissolves and peaches are juicy, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes.
- Uncover and cook until peaches are tender and juices thicken, about 5 minutes. Cool compote.
- Using electric mixer, beat cream cheese in large bowl until fluffy. Gradually add 1 1/4 cups sugar and beat until smooth. Beat in eggs 1 at a time. Mix in sour cream and vanilla.
- Spoon half of cheese mixture (about 3 cups) into crust. Spoon peach compote over by tablespoonfuls, spacing apart. Top with remaining cheese mixture.
- Place large piece of foil on oven rack. Place pan with cheesecake on foil. Bake until puffed, set in center, and beginning to brown, about 1 hour (mine took 25 extra minutes). Place hot cheesecake on rack; cool 5 minutes. Run small sharp knife around pan sides to loosen. Place cheesecake, uncovered, in refrigerator and chill overnight.
- For glaze Combine preserves and lemon juice in heavy small saucepan. Stir over medium heat until glaze comes to simmer. Strain into small bowl. Release pan sides; place cheesecake on platter. Spread glaze over top of cheesecake to within 1/4 inch of edge. Chill cheesecake until glaze sets, at least 30 minutes and up to 8 hours. Arrange peach slices in center of cake and serve.
Filling can be made up to 2 days ahead. Just cover and keep chilled.
Source: Bon Appetit