Our test kitchen staff discovered that Pepperidge Farm Bordeaux cookies make a great crumb crust.
2 1/4 cups Bordeaux cookie crumbs
1/4 cup butter or margarine, melted
1 (16-ounce) can whole-berry cranberry sauce
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
3 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
4 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Garnishes: sweetened whipped cream, fresh cranberries, fresh mint
How to Make It
Combine cookie crumbs and melted butter; stir well. Press crumb mixture onto bottom and 1" up sides of a lightly greased 9" springform pan. Bake at 350° for 10 minutes. Let crust cool completely on a wire rack.
Position knife blade in food processor bowl. Add cranberry sauce and spices; process until smooth. Set aside.
Beat cream cheese at medium speed of an electric mixer until smooth. Add sugar and cornstarch; beat well. Add eggs, one at a time, beating just until blended after each addition. Stir in vanilla.
Pour half of batter into cookie crust; spoon 1/2 cup cranberry mixture over batter. Swirl gently with a knife. Top with remaining batter. Spoon 1/2 cup cranberry mixture over cheesecake, and swirl gently with a knife.
Bake at 350° for 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 225°. Bake 1 hour and 10 minutes.
Remove from oven, and immediately run a knife around sides of cheesecake to loosen it from pan. Turn oven off; return cheesecake to oven, and let cool in oven 1 hour. Remove from oven; let cool completely in pan on a wire rack. Chill, uncovered, until ready to serve. (Cheesecake will continue to firm up as it chills.)
Remove sides of pan. Garnish, if desired. Serve cheesecake with remaining cranberry mixture, if desired.