Favorite Cheesecake

Crumb crust
8 ounces finely ground graham crackers
8 tablespoons butter, melted
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt

Filling
5 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
1 3/4 cups sugar
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
5 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
1 teaspoon vanilla

Instructions:

Crumb crust: Stir together crust ingredients and press onto bottom and sides, stopping one inch below rim, of a buttered 9 1/2-inch springform pan. Chill in refrigerator while preparing filling.

Filling: Preheat oven to 475 F degrees. Beat together cream cheese, sugar, flour and zest until smooth. Add vanilla and eggs/yolks – one at a time, beating on low speed until incorporated, scraping bowl between additions.

Put springform pan with crust on a cookie sheet to catch any spillover. Pour filling into crust (will fill to very top of springform pan) and place in the middle of the oven for 10 minutes. Watch carefully so that top doesn’t brown too quickly. Reduce the temperature to 200 degrees and continue baking until cake is mostly firm (center will still be slightly wobbly when pan is gently shaken), about 1 to 1.5 hours more.

Run a knife around the top edge of the cake to loosen it and cool the cake completely in springform on a rack, then chill it, loosely covered, at least 6 hours.

Top with fresh berries and enjoy!

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