Today is the forth day of the Lenten Season. Are you ready to take the train that leads to Crab-Pesto Cheese Wheel for Saint Patrick’s Day? Here goes . . .
I adore salmon. It is one of my favorites. Strong, bold flavor that plays nicely with lemons and garlic and butter and, well you get the idea.
Dreaming of salmon made me remember a wonderful salmon I cooked up a while back for Saint Patrick’s Day, my Irish Roasted Salmon. That got me to thinking – hum, wonder what else would be good on Saint Patrick’s Day that has been kissed by the Irish (or in this case, the green of the Irish) that isn’t Corned Beef and Cabbage. I ran with the idea, and created an entire menu around my Irish Roasted Salmon. Yet something else was needed. Something with that same Green touch. That’s when I found this recipe at Taste of Home. So pretty, don’t you think? It’s in keeping with the whole Green Patty’s Day and the bounty of the sea. Perfect!
Crab Pesto Cheese Wheel
1 cup crushed Vegetable-Flavored Butter Crackers
3 tablespoons Butter, melted
Place a greased 9-inch spring form pan on top of a double thickness of heavy-duty foil (about 18-inches square). Securely wrap the foil around the pan. Set aside.
Heat oven to 350 degrees.
In a small bowl, combine cracker crumbs and putter. Press crumb mixture into the bottom of the prepared pan. Place the pan on a baking sheet.
Bake for 8 minutes. Cool crust on a wire rack.
Crab Pesto Filling
3 packages (8 oz each) Cream Cheese, softened
1 cup sour Cream
¾ cup Asiago Cheese, shredded
3 tablespoons prepared Pesto
1 teaspoon grated Lemon Zest
½ teaspoon salt
2 large Eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup fresh Crabmeat
1 cup canned Artichoke Hearts, water-packed, chopped
Additional prepared Pesto for garnish
Small Basil leaves for garnish
Assorted Crackers for serving
Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees.
In the bowl of a standing mixer, beat the cream cheese, sour cream, Asiago cheese, pesto, lemon zest and salt until smooth.
Add lightly beaten eggs, one egg at a time and beat on low speed until just combined. Remove bowl from standing mixer.
Pick through and flake crab meat. Set aside.
Drain artichoke hearts and pat dry. Chop, leaving in a paper towel to absorb the excess liquids.
Fold in crab meat and artichokes.
Pour filling over cooled crust.
Place spring form pan in a large rimmed baking pan, add 1-inch of hot water to the baking pan to create a bath.
Bake in the 325-degree oven until the cent is just set and the top appears dull, about 55 minutes to 1 hour.
Remove baking pan from the oven. Carefully remove spring form pan for the water bath.
Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes.
Carefully run a knife around the edge of the pan to loosen. Continue to cool for another hour.
Cover and refrigerate overnight.
To serve, remove the sides of the pan and place cheesecake on a round serving platter or plate large enough to hold cake.
Drizzle around the edge of the cheesecake with additional pesto; allowing some to drip down the sides. Garnish the top with a few bail leaves.
Serve with crackers.