<Simple, classic cheesecake. From the first cheesecake recipe our Backstage Baker ever used!
Perhaps you recall James’s Cheesecake Bake-offs of past years (and posts!) Well, here is the very first cheesecake recipe James ever used. (Just imagine young James reading the New York Times, then toddling around his mother’s Milwaukee kitchen, surrounded by cheese curds, cream and cows, mixing up this luscious treat! Okay, perhaps it didn’t go quite like that . . .)
In James’ own words: “Here it is. First published in the New York Times as Jon’s Cheesecake. I did a few modifications, mostly making my own crust.” I searched the Times’ archives for the original recipe, but came up empty. But who cares? This recipe is delicious! James served it up at a Jitney Wine and Unwind and it was gone in minutes!
For Graham cracker crust:
1 cup Graham crumbs
¼ cup cocoa
2 tbsp sugar
¼ cup melted butter
2 packages (8 oz) cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
For Topping: (don’t skip this, it really makes the whole cake sing!)
1 pint sour cream
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
In a small bowl, mix together the graham crumbs, sugar, cocoa, and melted butter and press into a 9 inch springform pan.
Mix cream cheese and sugar. Add eggs one at a time. Add vanilla. Mix until well combined.
Spoon over graham crust.
Bake at 350 degrees for 20-30 minutes until set. Let cool on a rack while you make the topping.
For topping combine sour cream, sugar and vanilla. Spread carefully over top of baked cake. Refrigerate overnight
Garnish with fresh fruit just before serving.
Carra Patterson (Rena) enjoying a slice
Harvy Blanks (Shealing) and Ray Anthony Thomas (Philmore) fighting over the last piece