This silky cheesecake gets sweetness and tang from a blend of cream cheese and sour cream. Matzo meal and ground almonds replace the usual graham crackers in the crust for a nutty, toasty crunch. Topped with sugary strawberries and toasted almond slivers, this cake makes a beautiful centerpiece at any table.
Slideshow:More Cheesecake Recipes
1 cup sliced blanched almonds
3 matzo crackers, or 2/3 cup matzo meal
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup granulated sugar
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted, plus more softened for greasing
3/4 cup, plus 1 tablespoon granulated sugar, divided
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup sour cream
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
3 large eggs
1 pound strawberries, hulled and quartered
How to Make It
Make the crust Preheat the oven to 350°. Wrap a 9-inch springform pan with foil and lightly grease with butter. On a large rimmed baking sheet, spread the sliced almonds in a single layer and toast in the oven until fragrant and lightly golden, about 5 minutes. Let cool for 30 minutes.
In a food processor, pulse 3/4 cup of the toasted almonds with the matzo, salt, and sugar until finely ground. Transfer the crumbs to a small bowl and stir in the butter. Press the crumbs evenly over the bottom and halfway up the side of the prepared pan. Bake for about 15 minutes, until the crust is set and slightly darker. Let cool completely on a rack.
Make the cheesecake Reduce the oven temperature to 300°. In a standing electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese with 3/4 cup of the sugar and the salt at medium-low speed until smooth, 1 to 2 minutes. Beat in the sour cream and almond extract until incorporated. Beat in the eggs one at a time; scrape down the side of the bowl after each addition.
Scrape the cheesecake batter into the pan and place the pan in the center of a large roasting pan. Place the roasting pan in the oven, and carefully pour in enough hot water until it reaches halfway up the side of the pan. Bake the cheesecake, until it is set around the edge and slightly jiggly in the center, 60 to 70 minutes. Turn off the oven and let the cheesecake stand in the cooling oven for 1 hour.
Remove the cheesecake from the water bath and discard the foil. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool room temperature for 1 hour. Run a sharp, thin-bladed knife around the cake and remove the ring. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour until chilled and firm.
In a medium bowl, toss the strawberries with the remaining 1 tablespoon of sugar and let sit until juicy. Garnish the cheesecake with strawberries and remaining 1/4 cup of toasted sliced almonds.
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