Pecan Caramel Cheesecake
Creamy cheesecake with a gooey caramel base and a pecan streusel swirl. About as close to Pecan Praline ice cream as you can get in a cheesecake!
Preheat oven to 325°F [160°C]. Prepare a 9" by 2 ¾" [23 by 7 cm] spring form pan by greasing the bottom and sides.
Cover the outside with a double layer of heavy-duty aluminum foil to prevent seepage (for the water bath).
Have ready a larger (11") [28 cm] baking pan for the water bath.
Grind pecans with sugar in processor until finely ground. Add melted butter and mix well.
Press into bottom of prepared pan.
Unwrap caramels and place in glass bowl with cream. Cook on high in microwave until they begin to melt (about 1 minute - watch carefully). Stir until smooth. Drizzle evenly over crust. (This is sticky and difficult to spread once on the crust, so pour it on as evenly as possible.)
Bring cream cheese to room temperature (1 or 2 minutes in microwave at low temperature).
Beat the cream cheese, sugar and vanilla until very smooth.
Add the eggs, 1 at a time, beating after each. Beat until smooth, scraping down sides.
Prepare streusel by mixing sugar and flour, then cutting in butter until mixture resembles coarse meal. Mix in pecans.
Pour half the batter into the prepared pan. Sprinkle Streusel over batter. Pour remaining batter over streusel. Swirl batter with knife to distribute streusel. (Be careful not to mix in caramel on the bottom).
Set the pan in the larger pan and surround it with 1 inch of very hot water.
Remove to a rack and cool to room temperature (about 1 hour).
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