From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...Tucked into my bag of garden tricks is the use of pansies to span the seasons. I plant them as soon as the fall mums fade and our window boxes are begging for spots of color to break the monotony of winter gray. I've done this for years and actually keep cardboard boxes to cover them when temperatures drop to freezing levels. We've lived lots of places and, except for areas of heavy ice and snow, I've found I can protect them from most of winter's vagaries. My goal is to keep them alive until my favorite red begonias become available for summer planting. As a child, I loved pansies. Their vibrant colors and soft velvet touch fascinated me. The moth-like imprint on their petals opened other doors for me as well and for a time I was a bug-brat with a pretty impressive collection of insects and spiders. I was the pansy person in the family and from the time I was four or so, I was responsible for their planting and general care. In those early years, I'm sure my stature was nearly dwarfed by the size of the watering can, but I refused to use the hose because it beat my beauties down. I was convinced they thrived because of the care I gave them. It never dawned on me that they were nearly to impossible to kill.
This cheesecake pie is not unlike my pansies. It is easy to make and it has a soft velvet texture that is hard to beat. However, I must be honest and tell you that if it weren't for those two qualities, I wouldn't bother making this cheesecake again. I found the cake on Pinterest and was charmed by its appearance. The original recipe came from the Real Simple site, so I was fairly certain the cake would be fine, if not top drawer. It uses a pre-baked pie crust and the filling can be made in 5 minutes if you have your ingredients at room temperature. The filling is quite tangy due to the lemon juice and cheeses that are used to make it, but I think the addition of lemon zest would have greatly improved the flavor. I also think you'll enjoy the cake more if you allow it to ripen for a full day before you serve it. I am keeping the recipe because the cake is so easy to make and I have been known to have days when time forces something less than ambrosia from my kitchen, There is nothing wrong with this cake, but it is not a standout. I let you decide for yourself. Here is the recipe.
Lemon Cheesecake Pie...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite courtesy of Real Simple
2 (8-oz.) bars of cream cheese, softened
1 cup sugar
1 cup sour cream
2 large eggs
1/3 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice + zest for topping garnish
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 9-inch blind-baked commercial pie crust
1) Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
2) In food processor, combine cream cheese, sugar, sour cream, eggs, lemon juice, vanilla and salt pulsing until smooth.
3) Pour into crust and bake until center is set but still slightly wobbly. (40 to 50 minutes.) To keep pie crust from burning, cover pie crust edges with foil.
4) Let cool to room temperature, then chill til firm (4 - 5 hours.)
5) Before serving, top with thin layer of whipped cream and lemon zest. Yield: 8 servings.
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