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Baked Peach Surprise Cheesecake

INGREDIENTS

Crust (double this if you like a thick crust)

200g gingersnap biscuits blended to a crumb

1/4 cup melted butter

Compote Filling

600g fresh peaches, peeled, pitted, sliced 

2 tablespoons sugar

1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

Cheesecake Filling

1 & 1/4 cups sugar

4 x 250g packages cream cheese, room temperature

4 large eggs

1/2 cup sour cream

1 & 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Glaze

300g sliced peach, 200g sugar 

1 & 1/2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice

1/2 large peach, peeled, pitted, very thinly sliced

PREPARATION

For crust:

Preheat oven to 180°C. Grind gingersnap biscuits in processor to coarse crumbs. Add butter and blend until evenly moistened. Press crumbs over bottom and slightly up sides of 23 cm springform pan with high sides. Bake crust until beginning to brown, about 8 minutes. Cool on rack. Reduce oven temperature to 160°C.

For filling:

Combine peaches, 2 tablespoons sugar, and lemon juice in heavy large saucepan. Cover and cook over medium-high heat until sugar dissolves and peaches are juicy, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes. Uncover and cook until peaches are tender and juices thicken, about 5 minutes. Cool compote.

Using electric mixer, beat cream cheese in large bowl until fluffy. Gradually add 1 & 1/4 cups sugar and beat until smooth. Beat in eggs 1 at a time. Mix in sour cream and vanilla. Spoon half of cheese mixture (about 3 cups) into crust. Spoon cold peach compote over by tablespoonfuls, spacing apart. Top with remaining cheese mixture.

Bake 160°C until set in centre, and beginning to brown, about 1 &1/2 hours. Place hot cheesecake on rack; cool 5 minutes. Run small sharp knife around pan sides to loosen. Refrigerate, chill overnight. (Can be made 2 days ahead. Cover; keep chilled.)

For glaze:

Combine peaches, sugar and lemon juice in heavy small saucepan. Stir over medium heat until glaze comes to simmer. Strain into small bowl. Cool slightly.

Remove cheesecake from pan and place on platter. Spread glaze over top of cheesecake. Chill cheesecake until glaze sets, at least 30 minutes and up to 8 hours. Arrange fresh peach slices in centre of cake and serve.

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