To Make the Crust:
• 2 ½ Cups Cracker crumbs from vanilla wafers, chocolate
• Cookies or graham crackers (your preference)
• 4 Tbs unsalted butter – melted
• ¼ Cup light brown sugar
• A few Tbs of water as needed for crust
In a medium bowl, combine the crumbs with the melted butter and brown sugar. Add water one teaspoon at a time until the mixture is crumbly. Press onto bottom and sides of a 9″ springform pan and refrigerate until ready to use, or at least 15 minutes.
Preheat oven to 375°
To Make the Filling:
• 1 ½ Lbs Mascarpone Cheese – softened*
• 3 Eggs
• ¾ Cup Sugar
• 3 Tsp Fresh Lemon Juice
• 1-2 Tsp Fresh Lemon Zest
• 1 Tsp Vanilla or Almond Extract
In a mixing bowl combine the cheese, eggs, sugar, lemon juice, lemon zest and extract. Beat with an electric mixer until smooth and creamy. Remove crust from refrigerator and carefully pour filling into crust. Bake for about 40 minutes.
Remove from oven and increase oven heat to 450°.
To Make the Topping:
• 1 Cup Sour Cream
• 1/3 Cup Sugar
• 2 Pints Fresh Strawberries – rinsed, hulled, sliced
Whisk together the sour cream and the sugar until well combined. Spread over entire cheesecake and return to oven to bake for 15 minute. Let cool on rack for 30 – 45 minutes and then refrigerate for at least 4 hours but preferably 8 hours or overnight. Remove from pan.
Top with strawberry slices and serve.