Banana Cream Cheesecake
- 1 cup vanilla or butter cookie crumbs
- ¼ cup unsalted butter, melted
- 1 teaspoon banana essence
- 3 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
- ½ cup + 2 tablespoons granulated white sugar
- 2 tablespoons fine cornstarch
- 3 large eggs
- ½ cup + 2 tablespoons heavy whipping cream
- 2 teaspoons banana essence
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup ripe bananas, finely mashed or pureed
- 1 cup ripe bananas, thinly
- ¼ cup light brown sugar, loosely packed
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- ½ cup heavy whipping cream, chilled
- 2 tablespoons confectioners' sugar
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly butter a 10-inch springform pan with 3 inches height. Set aside.
- Combine together cookie crumbs, melted butter and banana essence. Mix until well blended. Press onto the bottom and up the sides of pan until about ½ an inch below the rim. Crust may be a little thin at the bottom. Chill until needed.
- Beat cream cheese on low speed until smooth and creamy. Increase to medium and add sugar, cornstarch and eggs, beating well after each addition. Beat in cream, banana essence and vanilla. Fold in bananas.
- Carefully pour batter over chilled crust and smoothen top. Set springform pan on a rimmed cookie sheet. Bake at 350°F for 15 to 20 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 200°F and continue baking for another 60 to 70 minutes or until center of cake is nearly set.
- Remove pan from oven and allow to cool on a wire rack for 10 to 15 minutes. Run a thin knife around the sides of pan to loosen cake. Allow to cool completely, about 1 more hour or so. Cover pan with plastic wrap and chill for 6 hours or overnight.
- Combine bananas and sugar in a pan and set over medium-high heat. Cook until sugar melts. Stir in lemon juice and continue cooking, with frequent stirring, until nearly caramelized but still pourable. Remove pan from heat and allow to cool.
- Whip cream with confectioners’ sugar until nearly stiff. Pipe over cake top. Spoon cooled caramelized bananas over cream topping.
- Cut cake into wedges before serving.
- Aside from bananas, you can also add ¼ cup chopped apples or nuts to cheesecake layer ingredients for a little crunch.
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