I'm a big fan of the slow cooker. Use it all the time. Mainly for tender roasts or stews. I knew you could make desserts in it, but was shocked when I read you could make a cheesecake in one too! This recipe is adapted from Food & Wine and is a absolute stunner. It basically steams in the slow cooker, creating a silky, smooth, luscious cheesecake. And the gradual cooling ensures a crack free top. (Yes. CRACK FREE!!!) So it's not only does it taste supreme, it looks it as well. I serve mine with fresh berries. But salted caramel or a drizzle of chocolate would be heavenly with it too.
1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup vanilla wafer crumbs
2 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
2/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar
12 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1 tablespoon flour
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1/2 teaspoon coconut extract
1/2 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 cup sour cream
In a medium bowl, mix the graham cracker and vanilla wafer crumbs with melted butter, 1 tablespoon sugar and a pinch of salt. Pour crumbs in a 6-inch springform pan that's about 3 inches deep. Press crumbs evenly on bottom and 1 inch up sides.
In the bowl of standing mixer with paddle attachment, combine the cream cheese with the flour, the remaining 2/3 cup of sugar and 1/4 teaspoon of salt. (This can also be done in a bowl with a handheld mixer). Beat for 2 minutes, at med-high or until smooth. Scrape down the sides of bowl. Turn mixer to low and add eggs, one at time, until fully incorporated, and then add extracts and lemon juice. Once blended, add the sour cream and continue to mix on low until smooth. Pour the batter into the springform pan.
In a 6- to 7-quart round or oval slow cooker, add 1/2 inch of water and place a rack in the bottom. (An upside ramekin or small shallow dish works too). Place the cheesecake on the rack. Layer 3 paper towels over slow cooker and place on the lid. Cook on high for 2 hours and don't lift lid until done. Once 2 hours is up, turn off and let stand for 1 hour, covered still.
Remove from slow cooker and place on rack to cool to room temperature, about 1 hour. Cover with plastic wrap and chill in refrigerator for at least 4 hours. Serve with fresh berries or topping of your choice.