Limoncello Cheesecake Squares

From Giada’s Family Dinners book, and I quote: “Refreshing, light, and decadent, these squares are a cross between mini cheesecakes and everyone’s favorite lemon bars.

 

Nonstick cooking spray

8 ounces purchased biscotti

6 Tbsp. (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, melted

3 Tbsp. grated lemon zest

1 (12 ounce) container fresh whole-milk ricotta cheese, drained

2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, at room temp.

1 1/4 cups sugar

1/2 cup limoncello

2 tsp. pure vanilla extract

4 large eggs

 

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spray the bottom of a 9x9x2 inch baking pan with nonstick cooking spray. Break the biscotti into pieces and grind them to fine crumbs in a food processor. Add the melted butter and 1 Tbsp. of the lemon zest, and process until the crumbs are moistened. Press the crumb mixture over just the bottom (not the sides) of the prepared pan. Bake until the crust is golden, about 15 minutes. Transfer the pan to a cooling rack and cool the crust completely.

Clean out the food processor bowl and blend the ricotta until smooth. Add the cream cheese and sugar, and blend well, stopping the machine occasionally and scraping down the sides. Blend the limoncello, vanilla, and the remaining 2 Tbsp. of lemon zest. Add the eggs and pulse just until blended.

Pour the cheese mixture over the crust in the pan. Place the baking pan in a large roasting pan. Pour enough hot water into the roasting pan to come halfway up the sides of the smaller pan. Bake until the cheesecake is golden but the center of the cake moves slightly when the pan is gently shaken, about 1 hour. (the cheesecake will firm up as it cools)

Transfer the pan to a rack, cool for 1 hour. Refrigerate until the cheesecake is cold, at least 8 hours, and up to 2 days. Cut the cake into squares and serve.

Enjoy!

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