I've made this light and airy cheesecake in many flavors over the years. This creamy dessert is surprisingly easy to make. It's great with many types of fruit and makes an amazing Thanksgiving dessert with pumpkin. This is the basic recipe. I've given directions for adding fruit. —Leith Devine
Make the crust: Mix graham cracker crumbs and crushed nuts together. Add melted butter and mix thoroughly.
Spray the bottom and sides of a springform pan with non-stick cooking spray. Pat the crust mixture on the bottom and halfway up the sides. Refrigerate.
Add the packet of gelatin to the lemon juice, combining well. If using a fruit puree, use 1 packet of gelatin per cup of fruit. Let sit for 1 minute. Microwave for 10-20 seconds to liquefy, then let sit.
With a standing or hand mixer, beat cream and mascarpone cheeses until fluffy.
Add vanilla yogurt and 1 tsp. vanilla. Beat to combine. Add powdered sugar gradually, mix to combine.
Add the lemon (or fruit) and gelatin mixture. Beat to combine.
if using a stand mixer, switch from the paddle to the whisk attachment.
Add 3/4 cup whipping cream. Whip until mixture shows medium soft peaks.
Put cheese mixture into the crust and refrigerate for at least 3 hours.
Beat the rest of the whipping cream with 1 tsp vanilla and 1 TB sugar. Beat until cream shows medium peaks. Spread on top of cheesecake.