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Pistachio Cardamom Cheesecake

 Pistachio Cardamom Cheesecake
Cardamom has a sweet and warm taste that makes you think of clove, allspice and pepper all wrapped in one spice. Mix it with pistachios and add to cheesecake for a dessert that suggests the exotic flavors of India. —Carolyn Harkonnen, Loomis, California
12 ServingsPrep: 30 min. Bake: 35 min. + chilling


  • 1-1/4 cups finely crushed animal crackers
  • 3 tablespoons packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 2 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
  • 1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons ground cardamom
  • 1 drop green food coloring, optional
  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup pistachios, finely chopped
  • Sweetened whipped cream, optional
  • Additional chopped pistachios and animal cracker crumbs, optional


  • Place a greased 9-in. springform pan on a double thickness of
  • heavy-duty foil (about 18 in. square). Securely wrap foil around
  • pan.
  • In a small bowl, combine cracker crumbs and brown sugar; stir in
  • butter. Press onto the bottom of prepared pan. Place pan on a baking
  • sheet. Bake at 325° for 15 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.
  • In a large bowl, beat cream cheese until smooth. Beat in the milk,
  • lemon juice, cardamom and, if desired, food coloring. Add eggs; beat

2 of 2

Pistachio Cardamom Cheesecake (continued)

Directions (continued)

  • on low speed just until combined. Fold in pistachios. Pour over
  • crust. Place springform pan in a large baking pan; add 1 in. of
  • boiling water to larger pan.
  • Bake at 325° for 35-40 minutes or until center is just set and
  • top appears dull. Remove springform pan from water bath; remove
  • foil. Cool cheesecake on a wire rack for 10 minutes; loosen edges
  • from pan with a knife. Cool 1 hour longer. Refrigerate overnight.
  • Remove rim from pan. Top cheesecake with whipped cream and sprinkle
  • with pistachios and cracker crumbs if desired. Yield: 12 servings.
Nutritional Facts: 1 slice (calculated without garnishes) equals 375 calories, 26 g fat (14 g saturated fat), 118 mg cholesterol, 259 mg sodium, 30 g carbohydrate, 1 g fiber, 9 g protein.