Monday, September 20, 2010

Berry Cheesecake Tart

I found it in "Taste of Home" magazine and made it this summer, and Ian declared, "This is what I want for my birthday!"
When I found out the neighborhood was having a Dessert contest at the annual Chili Cook-Off, I knew exactly what I wanted to make. Lo and behold, I won first prize!
With the combination of a shortbread crust, cheesecake, mixed berries, and an oatmeal crisp top, it is the best of every possible dessert. (Oops, pardon me. It is missing chocolate - so it's almost the best of every possible dessert!)

So, there are a few steps, but don't let that scare you off. It is actually pretty easy.

Berry Cheesecake Tart

2 cups flour
2/3 cup sugar
1 cup cold butter

1/2 cup strawberry jam (added after crust is'll see!)

Cheesecake Filling:
2 80z. packages cream cheese, softened
2 eggs, lightly beaten
2 tsp. vanilla extract

2 cups fresh or frozen mixed berries (if frozen, thaw and drain them)

3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/3 cup old fashioned oats
1/2 cup flour
1/4 cup butter

In a small bowl, combine flour and sugar (crust ingredients). Cut in butter until crumbly. Press onto the bottom and sides of a greased 10 inch springform pan.
Bake at 375 for 10-12 minutes, or until lightly browned. Cool on a wire rack.

Once crust is cooled, spread jam over the bottom of it.

Beat cream cheese and sugar (cheesecake ingredients) until smooth. Add eggs and vanilla and beat just until combined. Pour over jam.

Sprinkle berries evenly over the cheesecake.

In a medium bowl, combine the brown sugar, flour and oats (topping ingredients). Cut in the butter. Sprinkle over berries and gently press down evenly.

Bake tart at 375 for 45-50 minutes or until bubbly and golden brown. Be sure to place a cookie sheet either directly under the pan, or on the rack underneath. It gets quite juicy and it drips down.

Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Run a knife between the tart and the pan to loosen the edges. Cool for another 30 minutes.
Run the knife around again and release the sides of the pan.
Serve warm or cold. (I prefer cold.)

**Note: The original recipe is a little different than what I have posted above. I changed it by doubling the quantities of the ingredients for the crust and the cheesecake filling. All of the other ingredients are the same as the original. I have made it all three times like this because I wanted more cheesecake than just a thin layer, and the crust wasn't covering my pan. If you want the dessert to be a little less rich, simply halve the amounts of the ingredients in the crust and cheesecake filling.

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