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    Lemon Cheese Cake – New York Style
    This is one of Liz and I favorites! One note though, when cooking for the first time, watch the top of the cake it can become too brown or even blacken in some ovens. Check it at 10 minutes if it is not brown at all, go on to 12 minutes. If the top is starting to brown, stop then, if not continue on to the full 15 minutes.

    1 1/2 cups (5 oz) finely ground graham crackers or cookies such as chocolate or vanilla wafers or gingersnaps
    5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
    1/3 cup sugar
    1/8 teaspoon salt
    Stir together crust ingredients and press onto bottom and 1 inch up side of a buttered 24-centimeter springform pan. Fill right away or chill up to 2 hours.
    5 (8-oz) packages cream cheese, softened
    1 3/4 cups sugar
    3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
    Finely grated zest of 1 orange
    Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
    8 tablespoons of lemon juice (juice from two small or one large lemon)
    5 large eggs
    2 large egg yolks
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla

    Preheat oven to 500°F.
    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. Mix in lemon juice, until smooth.

    Put springform pan with crust in a shallow baking pan. Pour filling into crust (springform pan will be completely full) and bake in baking pan (to catch drips) in middle of oven 12 minutes, or until puffed. Reduce temperature to 200°F and continue baking until cake is mostly firm (center will still be slightly wobbly when pan is gently shaken), about 1 hour more.

    Run a knife around top edge of cake to loosen and cool completely in springform pan on a rack. Chill cake, loosely covered, at least 6 hours. Remove side of pan and transfer cake to a plate. Bring to room temperature before serving.
    For Plain New York Style Cheese Cake, omit the lemon juice.
    For Marble Cheese Cake, omit the lemon juice and both zests. Substitute almond extract for the vanilla. Melt 4 oz of semi sweet chocolate chips (Ghirardelli works best). Pour half of filling into springform pan. In four spots, pour three quarters of the melted chocolate onto the filling. Pour rest of filling into springform pan. Pour the remaining chocolate in three spots on the top of the filling. Insert a butter knife into the filling, until it is almost to the bottom of the pan (don’t go all the way to the bottom or you will mess up your crust!), make several S shaped passes through the filling. This will spread the chocolate out into lines. Bake as detailed above.

    Getting Dems together and keeping them that way is like trying to herd cats, hopped up on crank, through LA, during an earthquake, in the rain. -6.25, -6.10

    by Something the Dog Said on Mon Jan 26, 2009 at 08:01:10 AM PST

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