Maybe one of these days I'll actually use the fancy springform cheesecake pan my aunt and uncle got us for our wedding 2-1/2 years ago, but until then, premade crusts in disposable dishes it is.
They may not be pretty, but they sure are useful. I suppose I'd care more if I actually enjoyed eating crust, but all I'm ever really going for is what's in the middle. As far as I'm concerned, the crust is just there to hold it all together. And besides, it's so much easier to bring to a party because then I don't have to worry about my pan at the end of the evening.
Excuses, excuses. I really did consider making a pretty cheesecake this time, but when I saw that most recipes for the pans call for four bricks of cream cheese, I decided 32 oz. of fat and cholesterol was a bit much for a potluck dessert party.
Oh, come on, if I really cared about my friends, I'd make something like a cranberry-orange nut loaf. But I'd really rather just hear them compliment the cheesecake recipe that was handed down to me from Dad's mom, to my mom after she came to this country more than 40 years ago, that then became a staple at all of our holiday events, and became one of the first recipes I mastered. (Except for the one time when I made the cheesecake at Mom's house, and the "vanilla" was actually sesame oil because she's all about reusing, but not about relabeling. Bryan will never let me live that one down. Thanks, Mom.)
UPDATE: I have just been informed that the recipe isn't actually from Dad's mom, but from his sister, my Aunt Cindy. She says: "I got it from my 1969 Better Homes and Garden Cookbook (wedding gift typical of that era and before) and have been baking it for 40 years!!! It is always a hit and loved by everyone who has tried it."
8 oz.-package cream cheese
1/2 c. plus 2 T. sugar
1 T. lemon juice
1 t. vanilla, divided
1 c. sour cream
Graham cracker crust
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
Soften cream cheese, then beat until fluffy. Blend in 1/2 c. sugar, lemon juice, 1/2 t. vanilla and salt. Add eggs, one at a time while beating. Pour into crust.
Cook for about 50 minutes. While cheesecake is in oven, prepare the topping. Mix sour cream, 2 T. sugar and 1/2 t. vanilla. Alternatively, use only 1/2 c. sour cream, then add 1/2 c. fruit of your choice.
Spoon topping on top of cooked cheesecake. Bake for 10 more minutes.