Talk about sophisticated!  This Honey Roasted Pineapple Creme Fraiche Cheesecake is sure to wow your family and guests!

1 cup graham cracker crumbs
1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
1 tablespoon sugar

3 8-ounce packages cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise (you can substitute 2 tsp vanilla extract here)
2 large eggs, beaten
3/4 cup prepared crème fraîche (you can substitute store-bought sour cream here)

1 extra-sweet pineapple, peeled, cut into 1/2-inch-thick rounds, cored
(you can substitute canned chunked pineapple here)
1 cup water or 1 cup pineapple juice from can
1/4 cup honey
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons dark rum – you can leave this out, if you wish


For crust:

  1. Preheat oven to 325°F.
  2. Blend all ingredients in bowl.
  3. Press mixture over bottom of 9-inch-diameter springform pan with 2 3/4-inch sides.
  4. Bake until golden, about 12 minutes.
  5. Transfer to rack; cool.
  6. Wrap outside of pan with 2 layers of foil and set aside.

For filling:

  1. Using electric mixer, beat cream cheese in large bowl until fluffy.
  2. Gradually beat in sugar. Scrape in seeds from vanilla bean and blend 1 minute.
  3. Mix in crème fraîche.
  4. Beat in eggs 1 at a time.
  5. Transfer filling to crust.
  6. Bake cake until top is dry-looking and slightly puffed, about 1 hour.
  7. Turn off oven. Let cake cool in closed oven 1 hour.
  8. Refrigerate uncovered until cold, at least 6 hours. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and keep refrigerated.)

For topping:

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  2. Place the pineapple on a large rimmed baking sheet.
  3. Boil remaining ingredients in small saucepan 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. Pour syrup over pineapple.
  5. Roast pineapple at 400ºF for 12 minutes.
  6. Turn pineapple over; roast until tender and syrup thickens, turning pineapple every 5 minutes, about 20 minutes longer.
  7. Cool pineapple on sheet. Cut into 1/3-inch cubes; transfer pineapple and syrup to bowl. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Chill.)
  8. Drain pineapple, reserving syrup. Cover top of cheesecake with some pineapple; stir remainder back into syrup.
  9. Serve cake, passing remaining pineapple in syrup separately.

As a side note, you can substitute pears or apples in this recipe!

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