Apple Butter & Rum Cheesecake
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Ideally you will want to use a springform pan that is 8-1/2". If you like a thinner cheesecake, use one that is 9-1/2" (as pictured in this post).
Ingredients
  • GRAHAM CRACKER CRUST:
  • 2 cups crushed graham crackers
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 4 tablespoons melted butter
  • CHEESECAKE:
  • 24 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • ¾ cup white sugar
  • 2 tablespoons frozen apple juice concentrate (thaw, but don't add water!)
  • 2 teaspoons flour
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 3 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 cup apple butter
  • TOPPING:
  • 1½ cup brown sugar
  • ⅓ cup milk
  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • ½ cup rum (I used dark, spiced rum)
  • 3 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
Instructions
  1. Heat oven to 350 F. Place one rack near the bottom and one in the middle or just above middle.
  2. Grease an 8-1/2" springform pan. (You may use a 9-1/2" pan - cheesecake will not be as tall.) Place a strip of parchment around inside ring, trapping it with the bottom of the pan if possible before latching.
  3. Combine graham cracker crumbs, brown sugar, and melted butter until thoroughly combined. With the help of a flat-bottomed glass or measuring cup, press the mixture firmly and evenly into pan.
  4. Place in upper rack of oven and bake for 8 minutes. Remove carefully and place on a rack.
  5. Fill a large cake pan with 1 inch of hot water and place on bottom rack to heat while you are mixing the cheesecake.
  6. In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese well - for at least 2 minutes.
  7. Add the sugar and beat for an additional 2 minutes, scraping the bowl often.
  8. Add the apple juice concentrate, flour, salt, and the sour cream, beating until combined.
  9. Add the eggs one at a time, beating just until each is incorporated. Don't over-mix!
  10. Pour mixture over crust in pan.
  11. Put the apple butter in a pastry bag (or plastic zipper bag with tip cut off) and swirl throughout the cheesecake mixture, bringing the tip from the bottom to the top of the batter several times.
  12. Place the pan in the oven and bake for 15 minutes.
  13. After 15 minutes, WITHOUT OPENING THE OVEN DOOR, lower the heat to 325. Bake for 1 hour. don't remove the cheesecake, but wiggle it gently. It should be just slightly jiggly in the center.
  14. Turn oven off and prop door slightly open (I use a wooden spoon handle) for 1 hour.
  15. Move cheesecake to a rack and cool completely.
  16. Move to the refrigerator and chill for at least 4 hours. (Overnight is better!)
  17. Remove the ring of the pan. Use a long flat spatula to loosen the crust from the bottom pan and slide it onto a serving plate.
  18. Generously pour warm topping over the top. You can serve the cheesecake as soon as the topping is firm, or refrigerate it for later.
  19. TOPPING:
  20. In a tall pan, combine the brown sugar, milk, and butter. Stir over medium heat until it comes to a boil. Cook at a low boil for 2 minutes.
  21. Remove from heat and wait a minute for the bubbles to calm down. Stir in the rum.
  22. Add the powdered sugar and cinnamon and whisk briskly until mixture thickens and a spoonful drizzled over the top keeps its shape for 10 seconds. (About 5 minutes.) It should be thick but pourable.
Recipe by The Rowdy Baker at http://www.therowdybaker.com/?p=3933