The Family Cheesecake


The Family Cheesecake

There was a great battle of baking titans that took place around the year 1970.  The combatants, masters of cheesecake: the battlefield, Ann Arbor Michigan.  The coveted tile of “Strawberry Festival Prize Winner”, hung in the balance.  Tensions, I am sure, were high as the contestants attempted to whisk and bake their way into the annuals of Strawberry Festival glory.   Each with A spatula and a dream.  The dust settled, one contender is left standing – Phyllis Legg.  Her cheesecake, was light, had wonderful flavor and a vanilla scented sour cream topping that set it apart from the pack!

The rest of the story of this legendary cheesecake is as follows.  The recipe was originally my grandmothers, Margaret Maltby, who naturally passed it onto my mother, Karen Weaver.  After relocating to Michigan, my mother passed the recipe to my aunt, Phyllis Legg.  Aunt Phyllis did indeed enter it into that contest. . .  The rest, as they say, is history (original clipping from the paper is below).

Family recipes comfort us like no others.  One bite of this cheesecake immediately takes me back 30 years.  I hope you and your family enjoy this as much as we have.

For old thymes sake,



The Family Cheesecake



2 cups graham cracker crumbs

4 tablespoons melted butter

2 tablespoons sugar


24 ounces cream cheese (3 – 8 0z packs), softened at room temperature a bit.

5 eggs

1 cup sugar

1 ½ teaspoons vanilla


3 cups sour cream

½ cup sugar

1 ½ teaspoons vanilla

  1.  Spray a 9 by 13 pan with non-stick coating, pre-heat oven to 300 f
  2. To make the crust combine the graham cracker crumbs with the sugar, then mix in the melted butter.  Press into your pan.
  3. To make the filling, soften cream cheese in a mixer.  Add the eggs one at a time.  Add sugar and vanilla.  Pour over the crust and bake at 300f for about 45 minutes, the center will jiggle slightly.  Remove from the oven and let sit five minutes.
  4. Wisk together the topping ingredients.  Pour on and evenly spread the topping over the cheese cake and return to the oven for 10 minutes.  Remove and chill before serving.

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