Chocolate cookie crust
1 c. chocolate cookie crumbs (boxed or make your own by scraping the filling off the sides of one package of Oreos, and then grinding them to crumbs with a mortar and pestle)
3 tbs. sugar
½ stick unsalted butter, melted
16 oz. cream cheese at room temperature
1 c. sugar
1 tbs. cornstarch
3 eggs at room temperature
2 tbs. lemon juice
1½ tsp. vanilla
¼ tsp. salt
3 c. sour cream
White Chocolate frosting
12 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
9 oz. white chocolate, melted and cooled to room temperature
1½ sticks unsalted butter at room temperature
1 ½ tbs. lemon juice
Sour cherry topping
½ c. sugar
1 ½ tbs. cornstarch
1 16 oz. can tart, pitted, water packed cherries
1/8 tsp. red food coloring
1/8 tsp. almond extract or favorite flavoring
To make crust:
Grease an 8” springform pan, and line with wax paper. Grease paper. Mix ingredients, and pat into the bottom of the pan. Chill for 30 minutes to an hour.
To make the cheesecake:
Set oven at 350F. In a large bowl, beat cream cheese and sugar until smooth with an electric mixer. Add cornstarch. Add eggs one at a time, beating until smooth after each one. Mix in lemon juice, vanilla, salt. With a rubber spatula, fold in sour cream. Place a large pan (i.e. a roasting pan) filled to 1” with boiling water in the oven on the rack. Pour mixture into springform pan, and place pan in the large pan in the oven. Bake until firm, about 45 minutes. Turn off oven and let cake sit in closed oven for 1 hour. Cool cake in pan on a wire rack to room temperature, cover, refrigerate overnight. The following day, heat bottom of pan to loosen crust, remove cheesecake from pan. Invert onto plate to remove pan bottom and wax paper, then onto serving platter for frosting.
To make cherry topping:
Drain cherries, reserving 1/3 c. of juice. Combine sugar and juice in a small saucepan over medium heat. Gradually add cornstarch, and whisk until smooth. Add food coloring, and bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Reduce heat, and simmer until thick and clear, about one minute. Remove from heat, stir in flavoring, and cool to room temperature.
To frost the cheesecake:
Beat cream cheese until smooth with an electric mixer. Add white chocolate, and beat until smooth and fluffy. Add butter and lemon juice, beating until smooth after each addition. Spoon approximately 1 ¾ c. of frosting into a piping bag with a large floret or star shaped tip. Spread remainder on top and sides of cheesecake, covering completely. Create a wall on top of the cheesecake and decorate along the bottom with reserved frosting. Spoon prepared cherry topping inside the wall. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes to set.