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The BEST Dessert of 2007

With only hours left in 2007, I tried a new recipe on December 30, that was my absolute favorite dessert of the year.

cheesecake.jpg

Salted Caramel Cheesecake (from Food and Wine)

Cheesecake:
1/2 lb. cream cheese (room temp)
1/2 c. sugar
3 large eggs (room temp)
1/2 c. sour cream

Caramel:
6 T. light corn syrup
1/2 c. plus 2 T. sugar
3 T. unsalted butter
1/2 c. heavy cream
Fleur de sel

Make cheesecake: Preheat oven to 325. In a large bowl, beat cream cheese and sugar at medium speed until smooth. Add eggs one at a time, then beat in sour cream. Pour batter into 5 ramekins or custard cups.

Set the ramekins in a pan (I used a roasting pan) in center of oven. Add enough hot water to reach half way up sides of the ramekins. Bake cheesecakes for 10 minutes, until edges are set, but still jiggly in center. Turn off oven and leave cheesecakes in for 1 hour. Transfer ramekins to a rack and cool completely.

Meanwhile, make caramel. In a heavy medium saucepan, heat corn syrup. Stir in sugar and cook over moderately high heat, undisturbed, until a deep amber caramel forms (about 9 min.). Take off heat, and carefully stir in butter until melted. Stir in cream in a thin stream. Transfer caramel to a heatproof pitcher and let cool. Stir in 3/4 t. of fleur de sel.

Pour 1 1/2 T. of caramel over each cheesecake and swirl to coat tops. (If caramel is too thick, microwave at 10 second intervals.) Chill 3 hours. Sprinkle with a little fleur de sel just before serving.

*Can be made up to 2 days ahead.

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