Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Apple Pecan Autumn Cheesecake

It is getting to be that time of the year when most of the people in my circle have their B-days! What does that mean for me?? Baking! From now till January it seems that someone is celebrating every week. If there is one thing that I love, it is making birthday cakes, pies, cookies, cheesecake... you name it. I know that I have talked about this before but I will say it again. My Mom was the "birthday cake queen" in our little community (see Reese's Peanut Butter Cup Cheesecake.) She made every birthday during my childhood memorable with one of her fabulous custom cakes. In our house, a cake from the grocery store was unheard of. While shopping at the local market, we would walk past those cakes encrusted in mountains of jumbo, blue-tinged roses and cringe. What poor person is going to celebrate another year of life with Happy Birthday written in an illegible smear? My Mom was determined that we never would!!

She has passed that ideal on to both my sister and I. No store bought birthdays here!! Even my little sister who would hide every time that baking was even mentioned, has morphed into a Birthday Cake artist; every year making amazing cakes for her son. She stresses out about the task for about 2 months beforehand, but she pulls them out and they are beautiful! When asked why she does it, she says that she wants her son to remember his Mom, taking the time to do something really special like our Mom did.  And he does!  He is amazingly proud every year of what his Mom has made.

Happy Birthday, Nancy! Another Year, Another Cheesecake!!

Apple Pecan Cheesecake

1 1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs                                    

1/4 cup chopped pecans
1/4 cup cold butter
1/2 cup brown sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). In a large bowl, stir together the graham cracker crumbs, 1/2 cup finely chopped pecans, 3 tablespoons sugar, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon and melted butter; press into the bottom of a 9 inch springform pan. Bake in preheated oven for 10 minutes.

In a large bowl, combine cream cheese and 3/4 cup sugar. Mix at medium speed until smooth. Beat in eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Blend in vanilla; pour filling into the baked crust.

In a small bowl, stir together 1/3 cup sugar and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon. Toss the cinnamon-sugar with the apples to coat. Arrange apples over cream cheese in layers. Mix 1/4 cup chopped pecans cold butter and brown sugar together and crumble on top of cheesecake.

Bake in preheated oven for 60 to 70 minutes. With a knife, loosen cake from rim of pan. Let cool, then remove the rim of pan. Chill cake before serving.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

As a mom, you never realize at the moment what your efforts will mean to anyone. As a young mom dealing with every day "stuff of life" you stress over every detail but know you pulled it off as everyone arrives and seems to enjoy the day. It's nice to know that it really did have a lasting memory for everyone. Baking for others makes me happy and seeing you do the same is awesome. Seeing our grandson's pride in his mommy's priceless!

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