10 oz (1 2/3 cup) ginger snaps, finely crushed
1/4 cup sugar (only 2 tbsps if cookies are sugared)
1/4 tsp cinnamon
6 tbsps soft or melted butter
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 tbsp lemon zest
1/4 cup lemon juice
3 - 227g (3 -8 oz) cream cheese, at room temperature
4 eggs, at room temperature
2 tsps vanilla extract
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup 35% cream
Store bought or this microwave curd that is so easy to make
Use a food processor to pulverize the gingersnaps to a fine crumb. These ginger cookies had a sugar coating so I cut the sugar from 1/4 cup to 2 tbsps. Add cinnamon and butter.
Line the bottom of a 9" springform pan with parchment paper and cover the outside tightly with 3-4 layers of foil. Press the crumb mixture onto the bottom with a little up the sides. I used the bottom of a glass to press the crumbs into the edge of the pan.
On the lowest rack bake the crust at 325F for 10 minutes.
Now I should have covered the outside of the pan with foil before making the crust but only got to it here. The foil is to protect the pan from leaks when it goes into the water bath. (More about that later)
Mix sugar and lemon zest together and set aside.
In a large mixer bowl cream all the cream cheese, then gradually add the lemon sugar. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and beat until smooth.
Add eggs one at a time, then the lemon juice, vanilla and salt. Again scrape down the sides and finally add the cream, mixing 1-2 minutes more.
Spray the sides of the pan with cooking oil and pour the filling into the pan.
Now to that water bath. The cheesecake should be sat in a pan of hot water in the oven to bake. This keeps the cheesecake moist and helps keep it from cracking. Thing is you don't want water seeping into the foil. Believe me when I tell you I said a prayer before sitting the cheesecake in the pan of water.
Bake the cheesecake on the lowest rack in the water bath with hot water 2/3 up the side of the cake for 60 minutes. When done it should still be a little giggly in the middle and the top will have lost it's shine. If not, add 5 or so minutes to the baking time but do not overcook.
When it looks to be done turn the oven off BUT leave the cheesecake in. Crack the door opened propped with a wooden spoon and leave to cool for another hour. (There's the cheesecake lounging in it's water bath)
Finally remove from oven and slide a knife around the side to loosen but do NOT remove the side of the pan yet. Let it cool on a rack for yet another 2 hours.
Very pleased that there were no cracks! Now for the unveil... the sides come off and voila!
Spread a thin layer of lemon curd over the top and chill.
Here it is in all it's glory.
Serve with whipped cream
and garnish with lemon curd and a ginger cookie.