11/7/12 - Maple Pear cheesecake

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· 6 ounces cookies (about 12 graham crackers, 46 vanilla wafers, or 30 chocolate wafers, such as Famous)

· 3 tablespoons sugar

· 1/4 teaspoon coarse salt

· 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a food processor, pulse cookies until finely ground (you should have about 1 1/2 cups). Add sugar, salt, and butter and pulse until combined.

2. Firmly press crumb mixture into bottom and up sides of a 9-inch pie plate. (If using a springform pan, press crumbs halfway up sides.) Bake until crust is dry and set, about 12 minutes. Let cool completely in plate on a wire rack before filling.


· 2 bars (8 ounces each) cream cheese, room temperature

· 3/4 cup pure maple syrup

· 1 cup cold heavy cream

· 2 tablespoons confectioners' sugar

· 1 Easy Press-In Pie Crust, made in a 9-inch springform pan with vanilla wafers

· Nonstick cooking spray

· 3 medium pears, such as Bosc or Bartlett, sliced lengthwise 1/8 inch thick


1. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat cream cheese on high until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add 1/2 cup maple syrup; beat until smooth. In a medium bowl, beat cream and sugar on high until soft peaks form, about 3 minutes. With a rubber spatula, stir about one-third the whipped cream into cream cheese mixture, then fold in remainder. Transfer to crust and refrigerate until firm, 3 hours (or up to 1 day).

2. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Coat a parchment-lined rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray. Arrange pear slices in a single layer on sheet and brush with 2 tablespoons maple syrup. Roast until pears are soft, 20 minutes. Remove from oven and heat broiler. Brush pears with 2 tablespoons maple syrup and broil until browned in spots, about 4 minutes, rotating sheet frequently. Let cool. To serve, arrange pear slices, overlapping slightly, on cheesecake.