Autumn Apple Caramel Cheesecake
1-1/4 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/4 cup finely chopped walnuts
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/4 cup melted butter
2 large Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, thinly sliced
3 tablespoons butter
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
4 pkgs. (8 oz. each) cream cheese, room temperature
1 cup sugar
5 large eggs
1/2 cup sour cream
3/4 cup toasted walnuts, chopped (see note)
1-1/2 cups caramel ice cream topping
Preheat oven to 350ºF. In a small bowl, mix together all the crust ingredients. Press into a 9-in. springform pan bottom. Bake in oven for 10 minutes. In a saucepan, sauté the apples in butter about 8 minutes. Mix in
cinnamon and nutmeg. Set aside.
In a large bowl, mix the cream cheese with sugar until smooth. Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each. Blend in the sour cream, then fold in the walnuts and apple mixture. Pour into springform pan and bake for 60 minutes. Transfer to a rack and cool.
Refrigerate at least 4 hours. Release sides of pan and either pour caramel topping on top of cake, or microwave caramel sauce until warm and pour over slices of cheesecake.
Note: To toast walnuts: place on cookie sheet and bake at 300ºF for 8-10 minutes until golden brown.