Shrimp and Bacon Creole Cream Cheese Cheesecake

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Makes 12 slices Recipe by Cynthia LeJeune Nobles. Served as an appetizer or lunch entrée, this rich, savory cheesecake is best baked a day ahead so the flavors can mingle. Top with tomatoes and pepper jelly up to eight hours before serving.

 

Nonstick vegetable spray

2 tbls. fine bread crumbs

2 tbls. vegetable oil

½ cup minced onion

½ lb. shrimp, cleaned, deveined and coarsely chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

6 slices bacon, cooked crisp, drained and crumbled

2 tbls. minced green onion (plus extra for garnish)

2 11.5-oz. cartons Creole cream cheese (or neufchatel cheese)

½ cup heavy cream

3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

3 large eggs

¼ tsp. liquid crab boil seasoning

¾ tsp. salt

½ tsp. ground black pepper

⅛ tsp. cayenne pepper

1½ pints grape tomatoes, washed and thoroughly dried

½ cup red pepper jelly

 

1. Preheat oven to 325°. Coat bottom and sides of an 8 or 9-inch springform pan with nonstick vegetable spray and dust with breadcrumbs. Set aside.

2. Heat oil in a small skillet over medium heat until hot and sauté onion until translucent. Add shrimp and sauté until beginning to turn pink, about 1 minute. Add garlic and sauté 1 minute. Remove from heat and stir in bacon and green onion. Set aside.

3. In a large bowl, beat cream cheese, cream and flour on medium speed 2 minutes. On low speed, add eggs 1 at a time, blending well after each addition. Beat in crab boil, salt, black pepper and cayenne pepper.

4. Thoroughly combine shrimp and Creole cream cheese mixtures. Pour into prepared pan. Bake until set but still jiggly in the middle, about 1 hour.

5. Cool in pan until room temperature. Cover and chill thoroughly. Remove sides of pan from cheesecake. In a small saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon water and pepper jelly until jelly melts. Remove from heat. Arrange tomatoes on top of cheesecake and brush with melted jelly. Pour remaining jelly over tomatoes. Refrigerate until jelly sets, about ½ hour. Garnish slices with green onion.