Margarita Cheesecake

For the Crust:
4 ouncespretzels
1/3 cupsugar
4 tablespoonsbutter, melted
For the Filling:
3 packagescream cheese, 8-ounces each
1 cupsour cream
3/4 cupsugar
2 tablespoonsGrand Marnier
1 tablespoontequila
1 tablespoonlime zest, grated
4 largeeggs


Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F, with rack in the center of oven.

For Crust
Pour pretzels into food processor and pulse. Once pretzels have turned into crumbs add butter and sugar. Continue to process until butter and sugar are evenly distributed throughout. Pour mixture into a 9-inch nonstick springform pan. Press evenly into pan and up the sides. Place on a baking sheet and bake 5 to 7 minutes or until light golden brown. Remove from oven and set aside to cool.

For Filling
Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees F.

In a large bowl, with electric mixer, beat cream cheese for 1 minute. Mix in sugar, Grand Marnier, sour cream, tequila, and lime zest. Beat until well blended. With mixer running on low, add eggs one at a time. Fully incorporating each before adding the next.

Pour filling into cooled crust (filling will be higher than crust). Bake 1 hour with or without a water bath, or until set. Refrigerate and allow to cool completely, about 4 hours, before serving.

To serve, circle the outer edge of the pan with a knife to ease release of springform.

For Water Bath (optional)
After baking the crust, cover the outside of the spring form pan with aluminum foil, to prevent water from seeping into pan. Place in a deep roasting or cake pan. Place filled spring form pan into center of cake pan. Pour hot water into cake pan until it comes halfway up the side of the springform pan. Bake as above.

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