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John Clancy's Cheesecake

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Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups Graham cracker crumbs
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 24 ounces cream cheese (at room temperature)
  • 1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 6 eggs, separated
  • 1 cup dairy sour cream
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • Grated rind of 1 lemon
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon

Instructions

  1. Generously grease a 9 x 3-inch springform pan with butter. Place pan in center of a 12-inch square of aluminum foil; press foil up around sides of pan.
  2. Combine Graham cracker crumbs, the 3 tablespoons sugar, cinnamon and melted butter in a small bowl until well blended. Press 3/4 cup of crumb mixture into bottom and sides of pan. Chill while making filling. (Reserve remaining crumb mixture for topping.)
  3. With electric mixer on low speed or with a wooden spoon, beat cream cheese in a large bowl until soft.
  4. Gradually beat in 1 1/4 cups sugar until light and fluffy.
  5. Beat in egg yolks, one at a time, until well blended.
  6. Stir in sour cream, vanilla extract, rind and lemon juice until smooth.
  7. Beat egg whites until they hold stiff peaks. Fold whites into cheese mixture, soufflé-fashion, until well blended. Pour into prepared pan.
  8. Bake at 350 degrees F for 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until top is golden; turn off oven heat and allow cake to cool in oven for 1 hour. (Do NOT open oven door.)
  9. Remove cake from oven and allow to cool on a wire rack at room temperature. Sprinkle remaining crumbs on top.
  10. Chill overnight before serving.
  11. Dust with confectioners' sugar just before serving.