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Cheesecake

5 oz. (150 gr) simple cookies (to obtain 1-1/4 cups crumbs)
1/4 cup walnut or pecan halves
3 Tbsp sugar
6 Tbsp (a little less than 1/2 cup) unsalted butter, melted

15 oz. (450 gr) cream cheese, cut in pieces and softened
1/2 cup sour cream
3/4 cup sugar
3 large eggs
grated rind of 1 large lemon
1 tsp vanilla extract

1-1/2 cups sour cream
3 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 F (160 C). Process cookies in a food processor
to fine crumbs, or put them in a bag and crush them with a rolling
pin. Measure 1-1/4 cups. Chop nuts. Mix crumbs with nuts and sugar.
Add melted butter and mix well. Lightly butter a 9-in. (23-cm)
springform pan. Press nut mixture in an even layer on bottom and
about 1 in. (2-1/2 cm) up sides of pan. Bake 10 minutes. Let cool
completely. Leave oven at 350 F (160 C).

Beat cream cheese with sour cream at low speed until very smooth.
Gradually beat in sugar. Beat in eggs, one by one. Beat in lemon
rind. If using a vanilla bean, scrape its seed with point of a
knife into cheese mixture; or stir in vanilla extract. Carefully
pour filling into cooled crust and bake about 45 minutes, or until
firm in center. Remove from oven and cool 15 minutes. Raise oven
temperature to 390 F (200 C).

Mix together sour cream, sugar and vanilla. Carefully spread topping
on cake in an even layer, without letting it drop over crust.
Return cake to oven and bake 7 minutes. Remove from oven and cool
to room temperature. Refrigerate at least 2 hours before serving.
(Can be kept 3 days in refrigerator.) Remove sides of springfrom
pan just before serving. Makes 8-10 servings.

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