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Saffron Vanilla Bean Basque Cheesecake

A holiday recipe by Jackie Young



  • 20 oz room temperature cream cheese (2 ½ blocks)
  • 230 g granulated sugar
  • ⅔ cup cream
  • 3 eggs + 1 egg yolk
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • ½ tsp kosher salt
  • 1 vanilla bean
  • 1 large pinch Moonflowers Co saffron 



  • Make the Vanilla Bean Saffron mixture: Slice vanilla bean in half lengthwise and scrape out seeds. Add pod and seeds to a small saucepan with cream and a large pinch of saffron. Stirring occasionally, heat over medium until cream is steaming and color has released from saffron, about 5 minutes. Discard vanilla pod and transfer cream mixture to a bowl. Allow to cool while completing the next steps. 
  • Prepare oven: Place rack in the middle of the oven. Preheat oven to 475 degrees. 
  • Prepare pan: Crumple 2 sheets of precut parchment paper and uncrumple. This will help the paper mold to the pan. Lay one sheet of parchment in a 7 inch springform pan, then lay the second piece on top crosswise. Press along bottom and sides of pan. There should be parchment covering the entire interior of the pan. 
  • Make the batter: Using a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, beat cream cheese and sugar on medium until completely smooth, approximately 5 minutes. Scrape sides of the bowl. Add salt and eggs and mix on low until combined, about 2-3 minutes. Add saffron cream mixture and mix on low for 30 seconds untiil homogenous. Sift flour into mixer bowl and mix on low until completely incorporated, taking care to scrape the sides to eliminate any dry patches.
  • Bake: Pour batter into pan. Optionally place pan on a baking sheet for easy handling. Bake for 30-35 minutes until surface is caramelized a deep brown and edges are set. Your cheesecake may rise above the rim of the pan, that’s okay! The middle will still be jiggly- that’s normal and it will set with rest. 
  • Cool and Serve: Remove cheesecake from oven and place on a cooling rack for at least 3 hours before removing outer ring of springform pan. Gently peel away edges of parchment and serve. Center of cheesecake will still be a bit custardy and soft. For optimal texture, place in fridge overnight and bring to room temperature before serving. 






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