• For Figs:
  • 1 1/2 cups tawny Port
  • 1 cup chopped dried Calimyrna figs
  • 6 whole cloves
  • For Crust:
  • 18 vanilla wafer cookies
  • 1 cup hazelnuts, toasted (about 5 ounces)
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • For Filling:
  • 4 8-ounce packages cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups plus 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup Frangelico (hazelnut liqueur)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons grated orange peel
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 orange
  • 2 dried figs
  • 10 hazelnuts
  • For Port Sauce:
  • Makes About 1 Cup
  • 2 cups tawny Port
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch


Make Figs:
Combine Port, figs and cloves in heavy medium saucepan
and bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover
and simmer until figs soften, about 20 minutes.
Uncover and simmer gently until liquid evaporates,
stirring often, about 40 minutes. Cool. Discard
Make Crust:
Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 350F.
Combine vanilla wafers and hazelnuts in processor and
grind finely. Add butter and process until moist
crumbs form. Press crumbs onto bottom and halfway up
sides of 9-inch-diameter springform pan with 2 /4-inch-
high sides. Freeze crust 20 minutes. Spread fig
mixture onto bottom of crust.
Make Filling:
Using electric mixer, beat cream cheese and 1 1/2 cups
sugar in large bowl until smooth. Add eggs 1 at a time,
beating just until blended after each addition. Mix
in liqueur, vanilla and peel. Spoon filling over fig
mixture in crust. Gently shake pan to distribute
filling. Bake cheesecake until filling is golden
around edges and center moves only slightly when pan
is shaken, about 1 hour 5 minutes. Transfer to rack.
Press down edges of cake to flatten if necessary.
Maintain oven temperature. Combine sour cream and
remaining 3 tablespoons sugar in small bowl. Spread
mixture evenly over top of cake. Return to oven and
bake 10 minutes. Transfer cheesecake to rack. Run
small sharp knife around sides of cheesecake. Cool.
Refrigerate cake overnight. (Can be prepared 2 days
ahead. Keep chilled.) Release pan sides from cake;
transfer cake to platter. Cut 5 slices from orange.
Cut each slice in half. Cut each fig lengthwise into
5 slices. Arrange orange slices, cut side toward
center, around top edge of cake. Place 1 fig slice
atop each orange slice. Place hazelnuts between orange
slices. Serve with sauce.
Make Port Sauce:
Stir Port and sugar in heavy small saucepan over low
heat until sugar dissolves. Increase heat to medium-
high and boil until mixture is reduced to 1 cup, about
13 minutes. Mix water and cornstarch in small bowl.
Whisk into Port mixture and boil until slightly thickened,
stirring constantly, about 1 minute. Cool. (Can be
made 2 days ahead. Cover and chill. Bring to room
temperature before serving.)

12 servings

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Submitted 6/13/05.
Submitted By: Teresa Johnson