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Hot Pepper Jelly Cheesecake

Here's another very simple recipe. This cheesecake, a layer-and-chill recipe, can be reduced in size to serve to smaller groups. Try varying the nuts and herbs -- but not the pepper jelly!

  • 1/4 cup pine nuts
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1 cup hot pepper jelly, preferably red
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 5 ounces sharp Cheddar cheese, grated (about 1 1/4 cups)
  • Sliced bread, crackers or Belgian endive cups, as accompaniment

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Place the pine nuts on a baking sheet and toast in the oven until golden, about 8 minutes. Set aside.

Place the cream cheese, 1/2 cup of the jelly, garlic, cilantro and Cheddar cheese in a food processor. Process until evenly blended.

Line the bottom of a 7-inch springform pan with parchment paper. Spray the sides of the pan with nonstick spray. Add the cheese mixture. Refrigerate at least 2 hours.

Spread the remaining jelly evenly across the top surface and sprinkle the pine nuts on top. The recipe can be completed to this point up to 24 hours before serving.

To serve, carefully remove the sides of the pan. Transfer the cheesecake to a serving plate. Serve chilled with sliced bread, crackers or endive cups. Makes 4 to 8 servings.

"Fast Appetizers" by Hugh Carpenter and Teri Sandison

Monday, November 25, 2002

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