Cajeta Caramel Cheesecake

This past weekend my daughter had her school Sadie Hawkins dance. She and her friends organized a group date with five couples that included dinner at our house. My husband and I had fun waiting table and preparing dinner for them. For dessert I made this crustless caramel cheesecake which everyone enjoyed. The recipe is adapted from The New York Times Dessert Cookbook by Florence Fabricant. I use cajeta (my favorite Mexican goat’s milk caramel), but feel free to use dulce de leche or caramel ice cream topping. It is a very creamy cheesecake and the caramel flavor comes through nicely. Make it a day ahead so it sets up well and for the flavors to develop. This is a good make-ahead dessert option for the upcoming holiday season.

Cajeta Caramel Cheesecake
2 (8 oz.) pkgs. cream cheese, room temperature
3 large eggs, room temperature
1/2 c. heavy cream
1 c. cajeta or other caramel
1 tsp. vanilla
pinch of kosher salt
generous pinch of ground cinnamon

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Bring 6 cups of water to a boil for the water bath. Grease a 9-inch pie plate. Pulse the cream cheese in a food processor until smooth, then add eggs one at a time with the food processor running. Add cream and cajeta and pulse until smooth. Add vanilla, salt, and cinnamon and blend until smooth. Pour into prepared pie plate. Place the pie plate in a roasting pan and carefully set in the oven. Pour boiling water into the roasting pan to come half-way up the pie plate. Bake for 40-45 minutes until cheesecake is set in the middle. Remove from oven and cool on rack. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill overnight. Serve with a drizzle of caramel or a dollop of whipped cream. Serves 8.


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