2cupsapples,your favorite variety (peeled, cored and sliced)
¼ cupgranulated sugar,plus 2 tablespoons
¼ cup light brown sugar,packed
¾teaspoon apple pie spice
1½tablespoons cold water
13.4ouncesdulce de leche caramel
¼cup chopped pecans,optional garnish
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line the bottom only of a 9-inch springform pan with parchment paper. Generously spray the lined springform pan with nonstick cooking spray. Set it aside.
Using a small mixing bowl, stir together the graham cracker crumbs, melted butter, granulated sugar and cinnamon, until well incorporated.
Evenly press the crumb mixture into the bottom of the prepared pan.
Bake for 6 minutes.
Reduce the oven temperature to 325°F.
Using either a stand mixer, or a large mixing bowl and a handheld mixer on medium-low speed, beat the softened cream cheese and sour cream for 1 to 1½ minutes until smooth.
Add in the granulated sugar and cornstarch, continue mixing for 1 minute.
Lower the mixer speed to low.
Add the eggs in 1 at a time. Beat just until the eggs are well incorporated.
Add the vanilla extract.
Wrap the outside of the springform pan in 2 layers of foil.
Evenly pour the cheesecake batter over the crust.
Place the wrapped cheesecake in a larger baking dish, and add 1½ to 2 inches of water to the larger baking dish.
Bake the cheesecake for 1 hour 30 minutes. Turn the oven off and crack the oven door open. Let the cheesecake rest in the oven for an additional 20 minutes.
Remove the cheesecake and let it cool on a cooling rack for 30 minutes. Gently run a knife around the edge of the pan to make certain the cake edge will come away clean.
Cover the top of the cheesecake and allow it to chill in the fridge for 8 hours to overnight.
Just before serving, carefully release the sides of the springform pan.
Toss sliced apples in the lemon juice, and set it aside.
Using a 3 to 4-quart saucepan over high heat, add the coated sliced apples, water, granulated sugar, light brown sugar, and apple pie spice. Bring to a low boil, and reduce to medium heat. Allow the apple mixture to cook for 5-7 minutes.
Using a small mixing bowl, or measuring cup, stir together the cornstarch and the cold water until smooth.
Stir the cornstarch mixture into the cooked apples. Because the mixture will thicken quickly, stir constantly to keep lumps from forming. Remove the apple topping from the heat and allow the topping to cool.
Using a small heat safe mixing bowl, combine the dulce de leche caramel topping with the heavy cream. Heat in the microwave for 30 seconds. Stir well.
Using an offset spatula, or a spoon, evenly spread the caramel topping.
Just before serving, spoon the apple topping on top of the caramel topping.
Sprinkle with the chopped pecans.
Use the bottom of a drinking glass to press the crust down then use the edge of a rubber spatula to go around the edge of the pan to push the crust down along the edges.
Oven temperatures vary and may need to be recalibrated periodically to ensure they are accurate. Make sure to keep a close eye on your crust as the suggested baking time approaches.
It’s important to keep the mixer speed low when mixing the cheesecake batter. The more air in the batter, the higher the possibility for cracks in the top of the cheesecake.
To make it easier, put the cheesecake in the pan, put the pan on the oven rack, and then add the hot water.
If you wish to transfer the cheesecake, before topping, to a serving plate, spray a piece of parchment paper with nonstick spray and place it on top of the cheesecake. Gently flip the cheesecake over, remove the parchment paper under the crust. Place the serving plate on top of the crust. Carefully flip the cake right side up and remove it from the top layer of cheesecake.