Saturday, January 10, 2015

Pecan Caramel Cheesecake {Egg-free, Gluten-free}

During all of our egg-free and gluten-free Christmas festivities and celebrating with family, I also made this Pecan Caramel Cheesecake.  This is a slight adaptation of my previously posted recipe for Cheesecake (EF, GF), which was shown served with fresh berries.  

If you need a gluten-free cheesecake, I especially like how the ground pecans enhance the taste of crust when made with gluten-free cookie crumbs.  I think it adds some flavor and richness to the crust.

Pecan Caramel Cheesecake

3 pkg 8 oz cream cheese
1 c sugar
1 pkg gelatin (1 oz)
3 T cold water
1 c evaporated milk (8 oz)
2 t vanilla
1 3/4 c graham cracker crumbs or gluten-free cookie1
¼ c finely ground pecans
6 T butter or margarine, softened
1/3 c sugar
Caramel sauce2
8-10 Pecan halves

Be sure the cream cheese and butter are at room temperature prior to starting.

Preheat oven to 325o.  Mix graham cracker crumbs, ground pecans, butter and 1/3 c sugar and press into the bottom and slightly up the sides of a spring form pan.  Set aside while preparing the filling.

Sprinkle gelatin over water to soften.  Set aside.  Using an electric mixer, cream the cream cheese until fluffy.  Gradually add sugar and vanilla.  Bring evaporated milk to a soft boil.  Remove from heat and add softened gelatin, stirring until dissolved.   Let cool slightly.  Very gradually while mixing constantly, add the milk and gelatin mixture to the cream cheese mixture.  Once fully incorporated, scrap the sides of bowl to make sure all of the cream cheese is mixed in.  Pour into pan over prepared crust.

Bake at 325o for 1 hour.  Turn oven off.  Leave cake in oven and set the door ajar for 1 additional hour.  Chill overnight or 4 hours before serving. 

While cheesecake is chilling, toast pecan halves at 350o for 8-10 minutes in oven.  Remove and cool.  Prior to serving, top cheesecake with caramel sauce and toasted pecan halves.
Serves 8-10

1I use gluten-free S’moreables Graham Style Crackers and they work great.  Depending on how sensitive you are to eggs, they were noted as may contain eggs.  My husband is not as sensitive as some.  He cannot have anything with egg ingredients but he can have something that may be proceeded on equipment with items containing egg. 

2Check your labels carefully on the caramel sauce.  Several had gluten and or egg!  I used Smucker’s Simple DelightSalted Caramel Topping.  This topping had, well, simple ingredients.  If you are allergic to gluten, it does have vanilla extract and does not specify that it is gluten free.  So, if you are fairly sensitive, you may want to check with the manufacture or try a different brand.

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