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Blossom Cheesecake

 Blossom Cheesecake
With delightful decorations and fabulous flavor, this bright bloom is sure to become a perennial favorite! Plus it's easier to prepare than you might think. After baking a creamy white chocolate cheesecake, our crafty kitchen staff mixed pink and white candy coating. Then they brushed onto edible leaves and let harden, creating petal shapes. To finish, our cooks tinted additional candy coating yel
12 ServingsPrep: 1 hour Bake: 55 min. + chilling

Ingredients

  • CRUST:
  • 1-1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs (about 24 squares)
  • 1 cup quick-cooking oats
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • FILLING:
  • 3 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 teaspoons McCormick® Pure Vanilla Extract
  • 16 ounces white baking chocolate, melted and cooled
  • 4 egg whites
  • 1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon confectioners' sugar
  • TOPPING:
  • 2 cups (16 ounces) sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 3 teaspoons McCormick® Pure Vanilla Extract
  • DECORATIONS:
  • 9 ounces white candy coating, divided
  • 8 ounces pink candy coating disks
  • Yellow gel food coloring
  • Lemon or rose leaves that have not been treated with chemicals

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Blossom Cheesecake (continued)

Ingredients (continued)

  • Small pastry brush or new paint brush

Directions

  • In a food processor, combine the cracker crumbs, oats and sugar.
  • Cover and process until fine crumbs form. Add the butter and process
  • until combined. Press onto the bottom and 1-1/2 in. up the sides of
  • a greased 10-in. springform pan. Place on a baking sheet. Bake at
  • 350° for 8-10 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on a wire
  • rack.
  • In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese, sugar and vanilla until light
  • and fluffy. Beat in the melted white chocolate just until combined.
  • In another bowl, beat the egg whites, cream of tartar and salt on
  • medium speed until soft peaks form. Add the confectioners' sugar
  • beating on high until stiff peaks form. Fold into chocolate mixture.
  • Pour into crust. Place pan on a baking sheet. Bake at 350° for
  • 45-55 minutes or until center is almost set.
  • In a bowl, combine the sour cream, sugar and vanilla. Spread over top
  • of cheesecake. Bake 10 minutes longer. Cool on a wire rack for 10
  • minutes. Carefully run a knife around the edge of pan to loosen.
  • Cool 1 hour longer. Refrigerate overnight. Remove sides of pan.
  • BLOSSOM: Wash lemon or rose leaves and set aside to dry.
  • Set aside 1 oz. of white candy coating for flower center. In a
  • microwave melt remaining white candy coating and the pink disks.
  • Stir until blended. Using a pastry brush or new paint brush, brush a
  • thin even coat of the pink mixture onto the bottom side of each
  • leaf. Place leaves with coated side up on a waxed paper. Refrigerate
  • for 10 minutes or until set.
  • Coat leaves with a second pink layer the same as before. Chill until
  • set. Gently peel leaves away from pink petals. Refrigerate until
  • ready to assemble.
  • Melt reserved white candy coating. Stir in yellow food coloring until
  • blended. Spread into a 3-1/2-in. circle on waxed paper. Refrigerate
  • until set.
  • ASSEMBLY: For flower center, remove yellow circle from waxed paper
  • and place in a center of cheesecake.
  • Referring to the photo at left for position, arrange petals around
  • flower center, overlapping petals slightly and positioning larger
  • ones at the outside.
  • Place cheesecake on a cake plate. Yield: 12-14 servings.

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Blossom Cheesecake (continued)

Editor's Note: Be sure to properly identify leaves before using them for this project. Verify that they have not been treated with chemicals.