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Blue Cheesecake Recipe

This savory blue cheese cheesecake has become one of my go-to appetizer/potluck dishes. I usually serve it with Pain la Ancienne baguettes and some of the infamous Blueberry Habanero Chutney. The sweet and tangy chutney complements the creamy cheesecake and a bread like the ancienne - a simple white baguette with a well developed, nutty flavor - provides a neutral, yet not bland, base.

At a party, the bread, cheesecake, and chutney invariably end up getting swapped in with other dishes too, which is always amusing. I knew this was a great thing the first time I took one to a party (sleepover Saturnalia bash at a friend's B&B) and could overhear "OMG! Have you tried the chutney with that?" and, in response, "...and the cheesecake with that...!" from the next room. (I have no idea what they were pointing at, but I swear that many a combination was tried and they were mostly very, very good...)

Blue CheeseCake

This recipe is based on the  Oregon Blue Cheesecake from the Vintner's Inn that is the Northwest Best Places cookbook, vol 2. In theory, this is a 20-24 serving recipe - in my experience, if you have up to a dozen people it will disappear without anyone feeling cheated. With more people than that, I'd make extra.

pain la ancienne

cream cheese, 1 lb
blue cheese, 1/2 lb
sour cream, 6 oz  (laughably, I use Tillamook low fat)
AP flour, 1/4 cup
salt, 1/4 tsp
chives, 1/4 cup  or scallions, 1/2 cup - chopped
fresh herbs, 1-2 tsp - finely chopped (I often use thyme or rosemary)

ground crackers, nuts, or combination, 1 cup (Cheddar cheese crackers work, as do hazelnuts, and lots of things in between. Depends on your audience. This is divided and half is sprinkled on the buttered pan, the other half on top of the unbaked cheesecake. The original recipe uses cheese crackers on the bottom and walnuts on top. I vary this along with the herbs.)

Butter a 9-10 inch springform or tart pan and sprinkle with half of the ground crunchy stuff.

Mix rest of ingredients until smooth. This is easiest using a mixer, although you can do it by hand or pulse the mixture briefly in a food processor. Pour mixture into prepared pan. Bake at 325 for ~45 min, until set. Cool to room temp and refrigerate for at least 6 hours.

Serve with baguette slices and Blueberry Habanero Chutney.

When I went to the website of the Vintner's Inn to get a link for this article, I ran across this proviso in their  bed and breakfast info:

One pet up to 200 lbs. may be welcomed with prior notice only. Guests, however must accept complete responsibility for any damage or extra cleanup and there is a $10/night surcharge per pet . Pets that bark, meow loudly, or have a tendency to roar or hiss during the night or those that shed, will  not be appropriate or welcomed by other guests- we can help you find alternate kenneling facilities.

200 pounds? (200 pounds!) Roar and hiss? What the heck are people taking on vacation with them? Never mind, I don't want to know. But you'd think shedding would be welcomed as normal in comparison to the rest of that list.

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