One of the things I love about summer are the fresh, juicy peaches that are so plentiful at the market this time of the year. However, I have never been one to just bite into a peach as there is something about that fuzzy skin that gives me shivers. Lately, I have a lot of bizarre reactions to the textures of certain foods. Still I love to eat peaches once they have been peeled and was glad to come across a recipe that puts them to perfect use. It’s been a while since I have made a cheesecake and while rummaging through a box of old recipes last week, I a Fresh Peach Cheesecake Recipe from the July 2002 issue of Bon Appetit. I modified the recipe slightly and am thrilled with the results.
This is by far the best cheesecake I have ever made. The New York style cheesecake has a hidden layer of sweet peach compote that is truly to die for. I opted for a graham cracker crust for this cheesecake, since that’s what I had on hand. I think next time I will go with the gingersnaps. As wonderful as this cheesecake was, I think the gingersnap crust will put it over the top.
It’s Peach Perfection!
This is a do ahead dessert. You’ll need to begin preparing this dessert at least one day in advance. But trust me when I say that this cheesecake is worth every bit of love and effort you put into it.
- 2 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted
- 4 small peaches (about 1 1/4 pounds), peeled, pitted, sliced 1/4 inch thick
- 2 tablespoons plus 1 1/4 cups sugar
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 4 8-ounce packages cream cheese, room temperature
- 4 large eggs
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup peach preserves
- 2 1/4 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 large peach, peeled, pitted, very thinly sliced
- For Crust: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Add butter to graham cracker crumbs and stir until evenly moistened. Press crumbs over bottom and 1 inch up sides of a 9-inch-diameter springform pan with 2 3/4-inch-high sides. Bake crust until beginning to brown, about 8 minutes. Cool on rack. Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees F.
- For Filling: Combine peaches, 2 tablespoons sugar, and lemon juice in heavy large saucepan. Cover and cook over medium-high heat until sugar dissolves and peaches are juicy, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes. Uncover and cook until peaches are tender and juices thicken, about 5 minutes. Cool compote.
- Using electric mixer, beat cream cheese in large bowl until fluffy. Gradually add 1 1/4 cups sugar and beat until smooth. Beat in eggs 1 at a time. Mix in sour cream and vanilla. Spoon half of cheese mixture (about 3 cups) into crust. Spoon peach compote over by tablespoonfuls, spacing apart. Top with remaining cheese mixture.
- Place large piece of foil on oven rack. Place pan with cheesecake on foil. Bake until puffed, set in center, and beginning to brown, 60 to 75 minutes, until brown on top and center is set. Place hot cheesecake on rack; cool 5 minutes. run small sharp knife around pan sides to loosen. Place cheesecake, uncovered, on rack in refrigerator and chill overnight. (Can make up to 2 days ahead. Cover and keep chilled.)
- For Glaze: combine preserves and lemon juice in heavy small saucepan. Stir over medium heat until glaze comes to simmer. Strain into small bowl. Release pan sides; place cheesecake on platter. Spread glaze over top of cheesecake to within 1/4 inch of edge. Chill cheesecake until glaze sets, at least 30 minutes and up to 8 hours. Arrange peach slices in center of cake and serve.
- Note: This recipe has been updated since original posting to add an optional 15 minutes of baking time. I realized my oven temp was off at the time of original posting. Please bake until beginning to brown on top and center is set.