Snagged from Food & Wine magazine (August 2020), this delicious cheesecake teams a traditional graham cracker crust with a luscious cheesecake topped with a sweetened sour cream topping. The scrumptious crown on top is a mixture of fresh blueberries and sugar, cooked just long enough to dissolve the sugar and have the berries start to release a little purple-blue juice.
Back in the day when I taught cooking classes, someone would always ask about substituting low-fat sour cream, or reduced fat cream cheese. Often, I would say “sure.” But not here. Use the original cream cheese and full-fat sour cream. Eat a smaller piece – if you can.
The recipe isn’t complicated, but there are intervals of times necessary for cooling and chilling, so it is the kind of dish you want to make when you are “stuck” at home (perfect for a quarantine).
St. Louis-Style Cheesecake with Blueberries
Yield: about 12 servings
2 cups crushed graham crackers (from about 16 cracker sheets)
1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick), melted
1/2 packed cup plus 2 teaspoons light brown sugar, divided use
2 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
4 large eggs, separated
3/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons granulated sugar, divided use
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract, divided use
2 cups sour cream
2 cups fresh blueberries
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Stir together crushed graham crackers, melted butter and 1/2 cup light brown sugar in a bowl. Press mixture into bottom of a 10-inch springform pan. Place on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake in preheated oven until golden brown, about 8 minutes. Let cool 10 minutes. Leave oven on.
2. MEANWHILE, beat cream cheese, egg yolks, 3/4 cup granulated sugar and 1 teaspoon vanilla in a electric mixer on medium-high speed until smooth, about 2 minutes, stopping to scrape down sides as needed. In a separate clean bowl, beat egg whites in electric mixer on high speed until stiff peaks form, about 2 minutes. Fold egg whites into cream cheese mixture in 3 additions. Pour mixture into prepared crust and smooth top. Bake at 375 degrees until filling is puffed and top begins to dry out, about 25 minutes. Let cool on a wire rack for 1 hour.
3. Whisk together sour cream, 2 teaspoons brown sugar and remaining 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract in a bowl. Gently spoon onto cheesecake and smooth using an offset spatula. Bake until center is set (center will still be slightly wobbly), 18 to 22 minutes. Let cool on wire rack 1 hour. Place in refrigerator until chilled, at least 6 hours or up to 8 hours or overnight.
4. Meanwhile, stir together blueberries and 3 tablespoons granulated sugar in saucepan; cook over medium-high heat, stirring often with a silicone spatula, until blueberries start to release juices and sugar dissolves, about 4 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
5. Run knife around edges of cheesecake in pan. Release and remove ring from cheesecake. Transfer to serving platter. Spoon blueberries and sauce over top just before serving.
Make Ahead: Cheesecake can be made up to 1 day in advance and refrigerated airtight. Top with blueberries and sauce just before serving.