“Pecan Pie” Cheesecake with Caramel-Bourbon Sauce
Pecan pie and cheesecake are both hot commodities on holiday tables. This year, try starting a new seasonal tradition by combining these two favorites in a single pull-out-all-the-stops holiday dessert.
FOR THE CRUST, PROCESS:
FOR THE CHEESECAKE, BEAT:
FOR THE SAUCE, COMBINE:
The better the quality of the bourbon you use, the better the flavor in the cheesecake and sauce. For a simpler dessert, skip the cheesecake and serve the scrumptious sauce over pound cake or ice cream.
Preheat oven to 375°. Coat a 9-inch springform pan with nonstick spray and wrap entire outside of pan in foil.
For the crust, process chocolate wafers and the 1/2 cup pecans in a food processor until fine. With processor running, drizzle in melted butter. Press mixture into the bottom of the pan; bake 10 minutes. Cool crust completely before filling. Reduce oven to 325°.
For the cheesecake, beat cream cheese, butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar, and salt in a bowl until fluffy, periodically scraping sides of the bowl. Add eggs one at a time, fully beating to incorporate into batter after each addition. Add cream, bourbon, and vanilla; beat until ingredients are completely incorporated.
Pour filling over crust, smoothing the top. Transfer cheesecake to a roasting pan; place in the oven. Pour boiling water into the roasting pan a third of the way up the sides of the pan.
Bake cheesecake until it reaches 155° and sides are set but center still jiggles, about 1 hour. Turn off the oven; leave cheesecake inside for 1 hour with oven door closed. Remove cheesecake from oven; cool to room temperature. Cover cheesecake with plastic wrap; chill 3–24 hours. Remove cheesecake from the refrigerator 30 minutes before serving.
For the sauce, combine brown sugar, cream, butter, bourbon, and salt in a saucepan; bring to a boil over medium-low heat. (Don’t stir, but keep a close eye on it so it doesn’t boil over.) Simmer sauce 10 minutes.
Stir pecans into caramel sauce. Let sauce stand until slightly thickened and cooled to room temperature, 15–20 minutes. To serve, spoon sauce over cheesecake. (Serve remaining sauce on individual slices.)
Tamping the crust with a heavy, flat-bottomed object like a glass or measuring cup ensures a firm crust.
For an ultra-smooth cheesecake, fully incorporate each egg into the batter before adding the next.
Per slice (made with neufchatel) with 2 Tbsp. sauce
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 53g 81%
Saturated Fat 24g 120%
Cholesterol 158mg 52%
Sodium 564mg 23%
Carbs 54g 18%
Fiber 2g 8%
*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.