Copyright Thomas Saaristo  All Rights Reserved
Famous NY style cheesecake
The granddaddy of them all

Cheesecake gets better with age. Overnight refrigeration is required after allowing
the cake to cool completely to room temperature ... but I prefer 1 or 2 days

To start
Wrap the exterior of a 9 inch springform pan with a double layer of heavy duty
aluminium foil

Heat oven to 550 degrees Fahrenheit


For the crust
2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup very cold butter, cut into 1 tablespoon size pats
2 tablespoons honey

Place the graham cracker crumbs, brown sugar, butter and honey into the bowl of a
food processor fitted with the metal chopping blade. Pulse in 1 second intervals 5
times then in 1 second intervals until a mostly even crumb is achieved

Press the crumb mixture into the bottom and up the sides of the springform pan.
Place the prepared crust in the freezer while you prepare the filling

Make ahead
Graham cracker crust can be made 2 weeks ahead stored in a zero degrees Fahrenheit


For the cheesecake
Five 8 ounce packages Philadelphia brand cream cheese, at room temperature
1 3/4 cups sugar
3 tablespoons flour
Finely grated zest of 1 orange
Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
5 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Beat together cream cheese, sugar, flour, and zests with an electric mixer until
smooth. Add eggs and yolks, 1 at a time, then vanilla, beating on low speed until each
ingredient is incorporated and scraping down bowl between additions.

Put a roasting pan on the middle oven rack. Put the springform pan with the crust in
the pan. Pour the cheesecake filling into the crust (the springform pan will be almost
completely full). CAREFULLY pour very hot tap water into the roasting pan (you don't
want any water to get on the cheesecake filling) until it comes half way up the sides of
the pan. Carefully slide the oven rack into the oven and shut the door

Set a timer for 12 minutes or until the cheesecake puffs. Reduce the oven temperature
to 200 degrees and continue baking until the cake is mostly firm (the center should
still wiggle like Jell-O when the pan is GENTLY shaken), about 1 hour more (do not
allow the top to take on any color)

Remove the cheesecake from the roasting pan (the roasting pan can stay in the oven
until it is completely cool) and run a long thin blade around the top edge of the cake
to loosen it and prevent sticking

Cool the cheesecake on a cooling rack to room temperature (the bottom of the pan
will be completely cool to the touch). Cover the cake loosely with plastic wrap and
refrigerate at least 8 hours

Release the side of the pan and transfer cheesecake to a plate. Allow the cake to come
to room temperature before slicing and serving

Cheesecake keeps, covered and under refrigeration up to 10 days and in a zero
degrees Fahrenheit freezer indefinitely