Now that the Presidential debate is over and the High Holy Days are quickly approaching, we can all focus on the more essential, important and sweeter things in life, namely what you’re making for Rosh Hashanah dessert. Since I’m preparing a meat meal, because after all, what would Rosh Hashanah be without beef enchiladas, I wanted to come up with a non-dairy dessert that incorporated our tradition of eating apples on Rosh Hashanah. I am making an apple cheesecake but without the cheese, by using non-dairy cream cheese and non-dairy sour cream. If you prefer to make this a dairy dessert, the recipe is versatile enough for you to replace non-dairy for dairy ingredients.
It occurred to me that While in Morocco two years ago, my daughter Anita and I had taken a cooking class where we learned how to make the delicious apple crepes which were served each morning for breakfast in our Riyadh (lodging in the Old City of Marrakesh). I decided to use that filling recipe and combine it with a pareve (non-dairy) cheesecake to create something new and original.
- 1 cup graham cracker crumbs (plain or cinnamon flavored)
- 3 tablespoons of margarine, at room temperature
- 1 tablespoon sugar plus 1 cup sugar
- 12 ounces non-dairy sour cream
- 1 pound non-dairy cream cheese
- zest of one lemon
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 4 eggs
- 2 additional egg yolks
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon kosher brandy (optional)
- 4 apples peeled, cored, and thinly sliced in food processor
- 1 tablespoon margarine
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees F.
Grease the bottom of a 9 inch springform pan. Place 2 packets of graham crackers in the blender, pulse and then blend until they have become fine crumbs. In a medium mixing bowl combine graham cracker crumbs, margarine and sugar, and mix well. With your hands press crumbs evenly and compactly into the bottom of the prepared pan.
Place pan in 375 F. degree oven for 8 minutes (it will become golden brown), remove and then lower oven temperature to 350 degrees F . When pan has cooled, line the outside with aluminum foil.
In a large mixing bowl, combine sour cream, cream cheese, cup of sugar, lemon zest and vanilla. Mix well with electric mixer. Add the eggs, egg yolks, flour and brandy and mix again until smooth. Pour mixture into the prepared pan. Place the pan inside a roasting pan which you have filled with water (just enough water to come half way up the sides of the springform pan. Bake for 90 minutes.
APPLE TOPPING PREPARATION:
While cake is baking, peel, core and slice the apples. Melt the 1 tablespoon of margarine in a large saucepan, and add the apples. Mix for a few minutes at medium high heat then add sugar and cinnamon. Keep cooking and stirring until all liquid has evaporated, remove from heat. When cool gently place apples on cooled cake and arrange decoratively with your fingers.
Refrigerate until serving time.
Enjoy the Non-Dairy Apple Cheesecake, and Chag Sameach!