• Arizona Sunset Cheesecake

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    • (Shortbread Crust):
    • 1 1/2 c. Flour
    • 1/2 c. Finely grnd pecans
    • 1/3 c. Sugar
    • 1 lrg Egg, separated
    • 1/2 c. Butter, softened (Cranberry Glaze Filling)
    • 1 can Whole berry cranberry- sauce Or possibly 2 c. cranberry orange relish
    • 2 Tbsp. Sugar
    • 1 Tbsp. Cornstarch
    • 1 Tbsp. Grated lemon zest
    • 1 Tbsp. Lemon juice (White Chocolate Filling):
    • 1 1/2 c. Fresh orange juice
    • 1 x -3 Inch x 1 inch piece- of orange peel (orange part only)
    • 4 x 8 ounce pkgs cream cheese
    • 2/3 c. Sugar
    • 1 Tbsp. Grated orange zest
    • 2 Tbsp. Cranberry Liqueur (such- as Crantasia Schnapps)
    • 8 ounce White chocolate, melted
    • 4 x Large eggs (Candied Oranges Topping):
    • 4 c. Water
    • 2 c. Sugar
    • 3 x Seedless oranges (unpeeled)- cut into paper-thin slices (Garnish): Whipped Cream


    1. Shortbread Crust: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Working on a large flat surface, such as a pastry board, place flour, pecans, and sugar in the center of the surface and mix together. Form a small depression or possibly well in the center of the mound. Add in the egg yolk and the softened butter to the well, then blend these with the dry mix. Mix the ingredients thoroughly using your hands - there is no substitute for hot hands. Shape the dough into a ball and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigeratefor at least 10 min. Roll out the dough to a thickness of about 1/4-inch. You should have a circle of about 11 inches in diameter. For best results, roll out your dough between 2 sheets of waxed paper, then peel away the paper and cut the crust in a 9 inch circle. Place the circle inside a 9 inch springform pan. Prick the crust several times with a fork to keep the crust from puffing up during the baking. Place the springform pan in the oven and bake for 15 to 20 min, or possibly till light brown. Allow to cold. Using the leftover dough, line the sides of the springform pan. Press the dough against the sides of the pan, smoothing it so as to have a continuous layer of crust all the way around the sides of the pan. Make sure which the side crust meets the bottom crust all the way around. Brush the reserved egg white onto the shell, covering the bottom and sides. This will seal the dough and keep it from becoming soggy. Set aside till ready to use.
    2. Cranberry Glaze Filling: Mix the sugar and cornstarch together in a small saucepan. Stir in the cranberry sauce. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, till thick. Stir in the lemon zest and lemon juice. Set aside to cold slightly.
    3. White Chocolate Filling: Reset the oven to 350 degrees F. Boil the orange juice and piece of orange peel in a heavy medium saucepan till the juice is reduced to 3 Tbsp - about 12 min. Remove and throw away the strip of orange peel and set aside the reduced orange juice. Using an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese, sugar, grated orange zest, Crantasia, and reduced orange juice till smooth. Beat in the melted white chocolate and then the Large eggs, one at a time, beating just till combined. Pour the cranberry glaze filling into the prepared crust, spreading proportionately. Pour the white chocolate filling over the cranberry layer and bake about 50 min
    4. (the top will be dry and the sides puffed slightly - the center won't be set). Move cheesecake to a wire rack and cold completely to room temperature. Refrigeratein the refrigerator overnight.
    5. Candied Oranges Topping: Cover a wire rack with waxed paper. Set aside.
    6. Combine the water and sugar in a heavy shallow wide skillet. Stir over medium heat till the sugar dissolves. Simmer 5 min longer. Add in the orange slices 1 at a time and adjust the heat so which the syrup bubbles only around the edges of the pan. Cook the oranges for one hour. Turn over the top layer of oranges and cook till the oranges are translucent/soft and the orange peels tender, about another one hour longer. Lift and drain each orange slice out of the syrup, and arrange the slices in a single layer on the prepared rack. Let dry 1 hour. Boil the orange-sugar syrup till thick, about 6 min.
    7. Loosen and remove the sides of the springform pan. Set the cheesecake on a serving dish. Overlap the candied orange slices around the top of the cheesecake. Reheat the orange syrup, if necessary, and brush over the orange slices. Drizzle any remainder over each serving. Garnish: whipped cream
    8. NOTE: You may substitute grapefruits for the oranges in the Candied Oranges Topping if you prefer.

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