The KitchenAid stand mixer has been a staple tool for home cooks for decades. I love my purple KitchenAid, which I use several times a week (especially like the dough hook, which I'll use this weekend to make Hot Cross buns). This year, KitchenAid is celebrating the 90th anniversary of this icon with a dreamy recipe concocted by well-know chef and dessert-meister Anna Olsen (I'm a big fan of Anna, who recently signed a promotional deal with Home Hardware.) If you haven't decided on a fitting finale to a family Easter/Passover meal, this one might just fit the bill.
ANNA OLSEN'S CELEBRATION CHEESECAKE (Serves 12 to 16)
1 cup all purpose flour
1 cup graham crumbs
4 tsp sugar
dash of salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
2 1/2 lb. cream cheese, softened
1 3/4 cups sugar
3 tbsp all purpose flour
1 vanilla bean
1 tbsp vanilla extract or 1 vanilla bean
1/4 tsp salt
5 eggs, room temperature
fresh berries, for garnish
icing sugar, for garnish
For crust, preheat oven to 350°F. Combine flour, graham crumbs, sugar and salt in a bowl. Add melted butter and mix until an even crumbly texture. Press crust into a lightly greased 10-inch springform pan, pressing up the sides a bit. Bake for 12-15 minutes, then cool.
For filling, reduce oven temperature to 300°F. Cream cheese in a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until smooth and fluffy, scraping sides of the mixer work-bowl frequently. Gradually add sugar, again scraping sides often. Add in flour, scraped seeds from vanilla bean, vanilla extract and salt and mix well. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition and again, scraping sides. Scrape filling into springform pan. Place into a baking pan with edges, and fill pan with boiling water 1 inch up the sides.
Bake cheesecake for 90 minutes with the oven door cracked open slightly. Allow cake to sit at room temperature for an hour before chilling. It is essential to chill overnight. Gently run a knife around the edge of the cheesecake before removing springform ring. Top cheesecake with fresh berries and dust with icing sugar. Cheesecake cuts best with a hot, dry knife.