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Cheesecake, Hazelnut (D, TNT)
Source: "New Recipes from Moosewood Restaurant"
Serves: 16

1 cup graham cracker crumbs
1/4 cup sugar or equal amount sucralose-type sweetener
1/2 cup butter, melted

2 pounds cream cheese, softened
5 eggs
1-1/2 cups sugar or equal amount sucralose-type sweetener
1 tsp. lemon peel, finely grated
1 cup hazelnuts, toasted and finely ground

1 cup sour cream
1 tablespoon powdered sugar
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract

12 whole hazelnuts

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter the sides of a 9" springform pan.

Make Crust:
Make graham cracker crumbs by rolling the crackers between 2 sheets of waxed paper with a rolling pin or by grinding them in a blender or food processor. (I cheat and buy the ready made crumbs.)

Lightly blend the crumbs, butter and sugar with a fork and press this mixture into the bottom of the springform pan. (I also press them up the sides; the cake looks nice with the crust going up the sides, and since I double the crust I have more to work with.)

Make Filling:
Using a food processor or an electric beater, whip the cream cheese and add the eggs one at a time until the batter is thin and smooth. Add the sugar and whip again until smooth. Add the lemon peel and ground hazelnuts and blend well.

Pour the batter onto the crust. Bake for 1 to 1-1/2 hours until golden brown and firm. Allow the cheesecake to cool in the pan (at room temperature) for at least one hour. It will sink slightly in the center when cooling.

Make Topping:
When cake is completely cool, remove it from the pan to a serving plate. Combine the sour cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla and spread on top of the cheesecake.

Garnish with the whole hazelnuts.

Poster's Notes:
For the cream cheese, use Neufchatel.

I have always made a cheesecake from a recipe in "New Recipes from Moosewood Restaurant." It is TNT, and everyone LOVES it. The only adjustment to the recipe I make is that I double the crust recipe since my family favors a thicker crust. It is a deliciously fattening recipe, not for those avoiding carbs or fat. However, I have made it with replacements that make it healthier and it tasted just as good. I indicate the healthy replacements in parenthesis. (Note: use FRESH lemon peel, it makes ALL the difference!)

Posted by Rachel Stern

Nutritional Info Per Serving: N/A