I am thankful at times that my grandparents have difficulty using the internet... if my grandmother knew I was storing this in public view, she would decimate me. Still, this cheesecake is so amazing that it simply must be shared. The water bath bit may seem hard and overwhelming, but I promise it's really not! It makes the cake so much moister, and helps keep it looking beautiful, as well!
1 ½ cups finely ground or crushed graham crackers
½ t. cinnamon
1 T. sugar
3 T. butter, melted
You may substitute chocolate or vanilla wafers for the graham crackers. Pecan Sandies or Lorna Doone cookies make a nice crust as well.
Combine ingredients together with a fork until evenly moistened. Lightly coat the bottom of a 9-inch spring form pan with non-stick cooking spray. Firmly press the mixture over the bottom and one inch up the sides of the pan, using fingers or the bottom of a smooth glass. Cook crust 7 minutes at 375 degrees to set. Set aside and cool. Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees for baking cheesecake.
3 eight-ounce blocks cream cheese, room temperature
1 cup sugar
3 eggs, room temperature
1 t. vanilla
1 pint sour cream
Beat the cream cheese on low speed for one minute until smooth and free of lumps. Gradually add the sugar and beat until creamy, 1 to 2 minutes. Periodically scrape down the sides of the bowl and beaters. Add the eggs, one at a time, and continue to beat slowly until combined. Stir in the vanilla. Blend in the sour cream. The batter should be well mixed, but not overbeaten, which will cause the cheesecake to puff when baking, then fall and crack when cooling. Pour filling into the crust-lined pan and smooth the top with a spatula.
Set the cheesecake pan on a large piece of aluminum foil and fold up the sides. This will prevent water from seeping into the seams of the spring form pan. Carefully set the cake pan in a larger roasting pan. Pour boiling water into the roasting pan until the water is about halfway up the sides of the cheesecake pan.