This delectable dessert melds two favorites among those with a sweet tooth — cheesecake and baklava — and tops things off with a flaky Phyllo crown.
- 1 12-ounce package sugar cookies, finely crumbled
- 1/2 cup butter, softened
- 4 8-ounce packages cream cheese, softened
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 4 eggs
- 1 cup walnuts, chopped
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 3 tablespoons†butter, melted
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 15 sheets Athens® Phyllo Dough (9″ x 14″ ), thawed
- 1/2 cup butter, melted
- 1/2 cup light corn syrup, heated
Thaw one roll of phyllo, following thawing instructions on package. Preheat oven to 325ºF.
To prepare crust, combine cookie crumbs and butter with fork. Press crumbs on bottom and up sides of 9″ springform pan.
To prepare cheesecake, in large bowl, beat cream cheese and sugar on high speed for about 10 minutes until fluffy. Add lemon juice, vanilla and eggs, one at a time. Beat until smooth. Pour into springform pan.
To prepare baklava, combine walnuts, sugar, butter and cinnamon in bowl.
Unroll and cover phyllo sheets with plastic wrap, then a slightly damp towel to prevent drying out. To cut phyllo sheets into 9″ rounds, cut a pattern out of wax paper that is 9″ round, and fold in half. Fold 15 phyllo sheets in half so short ends meet. Place the straight edge of the wax paper round on the folded edge of the Phyllo. Cut the phyllo following the pattern. Layer and butter 5 sheets and place on cheesecake filling. Spread the walnut mixture over the phyllo. Layer and butter another 5 sheets of phyllo including top layer and place on top of walnut mixture. Layer and butter another 5 sheets, lightly score into 10 equal sections without cutting all the way to center or outer edge. Place on top of cheesecake. Trim phyllo rounds to fit pan, if needed.
Bake in preheated 325°F oven for 1 1/2 hours or until golden brown. Slowly spoon warm syrup over cheesecake to avoid runoff. Cool to room temperature. Refrigerate for 6 to 12 hours before slicing.