Linzer Strawberry Cheesecake
I was inspired to make this cake because when I first arrived in NYC my friends took me to eat cheesecake from Juniors which anyone who has ever been to NYC or eaten a Junior's cheesecake knows that it is the gold standard. So this is my tribute to that memory.
LINZER STRAWBERRY CHEESECAKE
6 to 8 servings
Prep Time: 2 hrs 55 mins
Cook Time: 1 hr 20 mins
Total Time: 4 hrs 15 mins
5 tablespoons unsalted butter (melted, plus extra for greasing)
1 and 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/8 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
4 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese (softened)
1 cup granulated sugar
3 eggs (lightly beaten)
1 and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup store-bought strawberry jam (to garnish)
Linzer Cookie Dough:
6 tablespoons unsalted butter (room temperature)
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 and 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
powdered sugar (for garnish)
For the Crust:
Position a baking rack into the middle of the oven. Preheat the oven to 325ºF. Grease a 9-inch springform pan with butter. Place the springform pan in the center of a large piece of aluminum foil and wrap the bottom of the outside of the pan.
In a medium bowl, add butter, graham cracker crumbs, sugar, salt, cinnamon, and cloves. Stir until thoroughly combined. Transfer graham cracker mixture into the prepared springform pan and using a dry measuring cup, evenly press the mixture into the bottom of the pan.
Transfer the pan into the oven and bake for 8 minutes. Remove from oven, set aside and allow to cool completely.
For the Filling:
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, add cream cheese and beat on medium speed until smooth, about 1-2 minutes. Add the sugar and continue to beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Reduce speed to medium-low and add 1 egg at a time, making sure the egg is fully incorporated before adding the next but being careful not to overmix. Add the vanilla and mix until just incorporated.
Pour mixture over the cooled crust and gently wiggle pan to remove any excess air. Place springform pan inside of a roasting pan and fill the roasting pan with water until it reaches halfway up the sides of the springform. Bake for 45 minutes. The center of the cheesecake will still be jiggly.
Turn the oven off and allow the cheesecake to sit in the oven for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and place on a cooling rack to cool completely for 1 hour.
Pour the strawberry jam onto the center of the cheesecake and using an offset spatula, evenly spread the jam across the top.
For the Linzer Cookie Dough:
Preheat the oven to 350ºF.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, add butter and sugar. Mix together on medium speed until just combined. Add egg and vanilla and mix on low speed until just combined.
In a large bowl, sift the flour, salt, cinnamon and cloves together.
Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture and mix on low speed until the dough starts to come together.
On a light floured surface, transfer the dough and shape into a flat disk. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and transfer to the refrigerator to chill for 30 minutes.
Using a lightly floured rolling pin, roll the dough into 1/4-inch thickness on parchment paper.
Using the spring form pan as a guide, cut a 9-inch circle into the dough. Using a 6-inch biscuit cutter, cut another circle on the inside of the 9-inch circle. Next, using a 4 inch biscuit cutter, cut another circle. Finally, using a 1-inch biscuit cutter, cut the last circle. Leave the 1-inch circle in tact, remove every other round, ending with the 9-inch cookie on the outside. Place parchment paper onto a cookie sheet.
Bake 10-12 minutes, until light browned.
Carefully place the cookie rounds on top of the strawberry-covered cheesecake. Lightly sprinkle with powdered sugar.
Tip: Get creative! Use cookie cut outs to create your own cookie design for the top of the cheesecake!