Strawberry Pineapple Cheesecake
- 1-½ cups strawberry-filled vanilla sandwich cookies (including filling), coarsely crushed
- 1/3 cup unsalted butter, melted
- 2 tablespoons granulated white sugar, packed
- 1 tablespoon pineapple syrup
- 1 tablespoon unflavored clear gelatin
- 2 tablespoons pineapple syrup
- ¼ cup boiling water
- 2 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
- ½ cup granulated white sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- ½ cup all-purpose cream, chilled
- 1 cup crushed pineapples, well-drained (reserve syrup as needed)
- ½ cup fresh strawberries, diced
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons water
- 2 tablespoons pineapple syrup
- 2 tablespoon sugar
- ¼ cup fresh strawberries, pureed
- Combine together sandwich cookies, melted butter, sugar and pineapple syrup in a food processor. Pulse until cookies are fine and mixture is well-blended. Press firmly onto the bottom and about 1 to 2 inches up the sides of an ungreased 9-inch springform pan. Chill for at least 1 hour before using.
- Dissolve gelatin in pineapple syrup and allow to “bloom” for at least 5 minutes. Stir dissolved gelatin into boiling water until completely dissolved and translucent. Set aside.
- Beat together cream cheese and sugar until smooth and creamy. Beat in gelatin and vanilla until well incorporated. Set aside.
- Whip cream until nearly stiff. Fold into cream cheese mixture until well blended. Fold crushed pineapples and diced strawberries into cream cheese mixture. Spread into prepared pan and smoothen top. Gently tap pan onto countertop to release any air pockets. Cover with plastic wrap and chill for at least 8 hours, or up to 24 hours.
- When cake is ready, run a thin, sharp knife around sides of cake. Remove pan sides. Carefully loosen bottom of pan and slide cake onto a serving platter.
- Before serving cake, dissolve cornstarch in water and pineapple syrup. Add sugar and pureed strawberries. Pour into a pan and cook over medium heat until thickened and cornstarch is translucent. Allow to cool to lukewarm, then spoon over cake top, allowing topping to run down the sides of cheesecake. Decorate with more strawberry or pineapple chunks, if desired. Cut into wedges before serving.
- If strawberries used are very juicy, drain diced strawberries used in cheesecake layer. Add any drained strawberry juice to topping ingredients for added flavor.
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