Lemon is one of the favorite flavors in our house. I use lemon for all different kinds of food but cheesecake is a guilty pleasure that I allow myself to eat on special occasions. The nice think about this recipe is it has very few ingredients. This can be assembled fairly quickly but it does have to bake for almost an hour. You then have to let it cool and refrigerate it for several hours prior to serving.
I always set out all of the ingredients needed prior to cooking or baking anything. I do this primarily to be sure I have everything I need before starting. It is a real drag to get halfway through a recipe and discover you are missing a key ingredient. In this recipe, all ingredients are key.
Preheat your oven to 325 degrees F.
The first step is to prepare the crust. Place 25-30 lemon wafer cookies into a food processor and turn them into crumbs as shown. Add 1/4 cup of melted butter and mix until well blended. Press into the bottom of a greased 9-inch springform pan and place in the freezer while preparing the filling.
To prepare the filling, process the cream cheese and sugar in a food processor until smooth. Add the eggs one at a time and scrape the sides of the bowl. Add the lemon juice, lemon zest, and vanilla until blended.
Pour the filling into the frozen crust. smooth mixture evenly in pan. Place the cheesecake into a turkey bag and place it in a large roasting pan containing approximately 3 inches of preheated water. Be very careful when placing the cheesecake into the water bath. This is the best method I have found to keep the cheesecake from cracking. If you aren’t worried about this, you can bake the cheesecake without the water bath. Bake in a preheated 325-degree oven for 55 minutes or until the center of the cheesecake jiggles slightly when the pan is tapped.
Remove cheesecake from the water bath and place on a wire rack to cool for two hours. Be VERY careful when removing the cheesecake from the water bath. Take your time to avoid getting burned. After the cheesecake has cooled, cover with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for at least six hours prior to serving.