Hi everyone, I'm back! We actually got back into town yesterday but I was exhausted and I spent the entire day today catching up on your blogs. There were a lot of them so I'm just now getting around to my birthday cheesecake tart with strawberries and posting about our "Hill Country" adventures. Truth be told, it's not very hilly.
We had a great time in Fredericksburg at the B&B. My only complaint (because there's always one!) was that it was so freakin' hot! We would go out and browse shops, eat breakfast or lunch and walk around. We could only do this for a couple hours at a time, then take a break from the heat. We'd go back to the cottage, strip down to our skivvies and turn all the fans on and lay around. Probably more info than you'd like to know, but it was necessary :-)
On our first day we stopped in Stonewall, TX, home and resting place of President Lyndon B. Johnson and his wife, Lady Bird. He owned an expansive amount of ranch land where cattle roam and the Pedernales River flows. his home, the cemetery and the surrounding land were all really beautiful. I took tons of pictures, but this would be a very long post if I were to post them all, so here are just a few.
And if I haven't lost you yet...
- 6 graham crackers (2 1/2 by 5 inches each)
- 1/3 cup whole almonds
- 1 1/4 cups sugar
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 2 bars (8 oz. each) cream cheese, room temp.
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- pinch salt
For the crust: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a food processor, grind graham crackers, almonds, and 1/4 cup sugar until finely ground; add butter, and process until moistened. Transfer to a 9-inch removable-bottom tart pan. Using the base of a dry measuring cup, press mixture firmly into the bottom and up sides of pan. Freeze at least 15 minutes.
For the filling: Carefully wipe processor blade and bowl clean. Place cream cheese, sour cream, 1/2 cup sugar, egg, vanilla, and salt in food processor; blend just until smooth. Place tart pan on a rimmed baking sheet; fill with cheesecake mixture. Bake until filling is just set, 30 to 35 minutes. Transfer tart pan to a wire rack to cool completely.
Top with fresh sliced fruit or a blueberry-plum topping.
NOTE: This crust was a little crumbly and kept breaking away, so be very gentle when handling. Perhaps a little more butter would keep it together???
This tart was delicious. It was creamy, yet dense, but not hard. And it was the perfect amount of filling to crust ratio. The crust was nutty and buttery and crunchy, just like I like it. My husband didn't like the nuts in the crust though, he would have preferred it plain. But this tart was not for him!
I'll be back in a couple days to tell/show you more of my trip!