I created this recipe for a cheesecake without a graham cracker crust because I prefer not to use the graham crust. The store-bought variety is designed for pies and cannot contain all the cheesecake filling. Instead, I opted for a straightforward flour base, which provided a more traditional texture and was easier for me to prepare. The flour crust also ensures a sturdy foundation for the dense cheesecake layer, preventing any leaks or collapses. You can prebake the crust for a crispier edge.
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- 1 What I Love About This Cheesecake Without A Graham Cracker Crust Recipe
- 2 Kitchen Equipment Needed
- 3 FAQs
- 4 Toppings
- 5 Why Tomato Jam Enhances This Recipe
- 6 Cheesecake Without A Graham Cracker Crust
- 7 The Final: Cheesecake Without A Graham Cracker Crust Recipe
What I Love About This Cheesecake Without A Graham Cracker Crust Recipe
My mother used to make this gourmet (read: time consuming) cheesecake with a graham cracker crust. My sister and I used to take cans and roll them over the graham crackers (inside a zipper bag) to crush them. She would add butter and then form the crust. I have fond memories of these cheesecakes, although not so fond memories of making the crust.
But you don’t need to go through all that hassle. You might say that making a regular flour crust is just as annoying, but I find it is a lot easier because I have all the ingredients on hand. Graham crackers tend to disappear in this house … and then I don’t have said crackers when I have a craving for some cheesecake.
This recipe is kind of like making a pie, except with that yummy cheesecake filling. See how simple it can be! It also uses some cottage cheese for an added flavor profile.
Also, this cheesecake is not a fruit-based cake. Rather, it features garlic, basil, and some cooked cherry tomatoes.
Kitchen Equipment Needed
- Food processor
- Mixing bowls
- Measuring cups and spoons
- Pie or tart pan
- Plastic wrap
- Rolling pin
- Cutting board
- Wooden spoon or spatula
- Baking weights or dried beans
- Baking paper or foil
- Wire rack for cooling
- How do I store leftovers?
Store any leftover cheesecake in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. It’s best enjoyed cold or at room temperature after being taken out of the fridge for a few minutes.
- Can I freeze this savory cheesecake?
Yes, you can freeze the cheesecake for up to a month. Wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and then in foil. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before serving.
- What are some pairing suggestions?
Serve with a light salad dressed in Dijon vinaigrette, or for wine pairings, choose a Chardonnay, Chenin Blanc for white wines, or a light Beaujolais or Pinot Noir if you prefer red wine.
- Are there gluten-free options for the crust?
Yes, substitute the regular flour with a gluten-free flour blend for the crust. Ensure it’s a 1:1 baking blend to avoid altering the texture.
- Is there a dairy-free substitute for cream cheese and cottage cheese?
You can use dairy-free cream cheese and cottage cheese alternatives available in most health food stores. Keep in mind the texture and flavor might slightly differ.
- Can I add other vegetables to the topping?
Absolutely. Consider adding roasted red peppers, caramelized onions, or sautéed spinach to the topping for additional flavor.
- How do I ensure the cheesecake doesn’t crack?
Avoid overmixing the filling and don’t open the oven door while baking. Let the cheesecake cool gradually in the oven with the door slightly ajar.
- Can I make this cheesecake ahead of time?
Yes, you can prepare the cheesecake a day in advance. Keep it refrigerated until ready to serve.
- What kitchen equipment will I need?
Essential equipment includes a food processor, mixing bowls, a pie or tart pan, a skillet, and basic measuring tools.
- Can I use store-bought crust?
For convenience, a pre-made crust can be used, but making your own crust as detailed in the recipe offers a fresher taste and allows for customization.
- For a twist, consider using half-cooked roasted or smoked vegetables as a topping or mixed into the filling for an added flavor dimension.
- Experiment with the toppings based on seasonal vegetables or your preferences to create a unique variation each time you make this cheesecake.
Why Tomato Jam Enhances This Recipe
Tomato jam adds a unique depth to the savory cheesecake, transforming simple tomatoes into a rich, concentrated condiment. By cooking down the tomatoes, their natural sugars caramelize, creating a layer of sweetness that complements the savory, creamy base of the cheesecake. The texture of the jam contrasts nicely with the filling and crust, offering a more complex eating experience.
The cooking process intensifies the tomato flavor, making the jam a standout addition that balances the cheesecake’s richness. The cream cheese in the jam ensures it blends well with the overall dish, enhancing both flavor and texture. This component allows for flavor customization, making the recipe adaptable to different tastes and seasons.
Visually, the jam’s vibrant color makes the dish more appealing, inviting you to dive in. Its inclusion turns the cheesecake into a sophisticated dish, perfect for impressing guests or enjoying a special meal at home. The success of the tomato jam in this recipe lies in its ability to elevate basic ingredients into an impressive culinary creation.
For the crust
- 2 1/2 cups flour
- 3/4 cup butter
- 1 teaspoon salt
- cold water
- 1 egg
For the filling
- 1 1/4 cups cream cheese
- 3/4 cup cottage cheese
- 4 eggs
- 1/4 cup finely chopped basil
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1 tablespoon flour
- salt and white pepper to taste
For the topping
- walnuts (optional)
- 2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
- 2 tablespoons cream cheese
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon sugar (optional)
- 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar (optional)
- Fresh herbs (optional, to taste)
- Cut the cold butter into small cubes. In a food processor, combine the flour, butter, salt, and egg for the crust. Pulse until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs with pea-sized pieces of butter.
- Add cold water, 1 tablespoon at a time, pulsing after each addition. Stop adding water once the dough starts to form a cohesive mass.
- Turn the dough onto a work surface, form it into a disk without overworking, dust with flour on all sides, wrap in plastic, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit (190 degrees Celsius). Roll out the dough and fit it into a pie or tart pan. Blind bake the crust for about 30 minutes, or until it's partially cooked and starting to turn golden.
- In a bowl, combine the cream cheese, cottage cheese, eggs, basil, garlic, flour, salt, and white pepper for the filling. Mix until smooth.
- Pour the filling into the pre-baked crust and bake for another 30 minutes, or until the filling is set and the top is lightly golden. Optionally, garnish with the cherry tomato jam before serving.
For the cherry jam
- Heat the olive oil in a non-stick skillet over medium heat.
- Add the halved cherry tomatoes to the skillet, and sprinkle them with the salt (and sugar, if using). Cook for 5-7 minutes until the tomatoes begin to break down.
- Lower the heat to medium-low and continue to cook the tomatoes, stirring occasionally, until they reach a jam-like consistency, which may take around 10-15 minutes. If the mixture starts to stick to the pan, you can add a small splash of water.
- Once the tomatoes have mostly broken down, stir in the cream cheese until well combined and the mixture takes on a creamy, orange hue.
- If desired, add a splash of balsamic vinegar for added flavor and complexity.
- Finish by stirring in fresh herbs, if using, and adjust the seasoning with additional salt to taste.
- Remove from the heat and let the tomato-cream cheese jam cool slightly before using it as a topping for the cheesecake.
Let the cheesecake cool completely before slicing. This savory cheesecake pairs well with a light salad for a complete meal.
Amount Per Serving Calories 530Total Fat 37gSaturated Fat 21gTrans Fat 1gUnsaturated Fat 13gCholesterol 205mgSodium 853mgCarbohydrates 36gFiber 2gSugar 4gProtein 14g
Nutrition automatically generated.