Spinach Pesto Cheesecake
3/4 cup fine, dry breadcrumbs
1/3 cup ground pine nuts or walnuts
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/3 cup butter or margarine, melted
1 cup coarsely chopped fresh spinach
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup pine nuts or walnut pieces
1 large clove garlic, cut in half
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly-ground pepper
1/3 cup olive oil
24 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup milk
Garnish: pine nuts or walnut halves
Combine breadcrumbs, ground pine nuts, the 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese and butter; press on bottom and 1 inch up sides of an 8-inch springform pan. Set aside.
Position knife blade in food processor bowl; add spinach and next 5 ingredients. Top with cover; process until smooth. With processor running, pour oil through the food chute in a steady stream until mixture is blended.
Beat cream cheese at high speed of an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add milk and spinach mixture, mixing well.
Pour mixture into the prepared pan. Bake at 300 degrees F for 1 hour or until the cheesecake is almost set. Turn the oven off, and partially open the oven door. Leave cheesecake in oven for 1 hour.
Garnish, if desired, and serve immediately. Or let the cheesecake cool completely on a wire rack. Cover and chill.