Strawberry Margarita Cheesecake

Strawberry Margarita Cheesecake

1 1/2 cups pretzel crumbs
1/2 cup butter or margarine, melted
1 cup fresh strawberries, hulled
24 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
4 large eggs
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1/4 cup tequila
1/4 cup Triple Sec
Garnishes: lime slices, fresh strawberries

Combine pretzel crumbs and butter; firmly press on bottom and 1 1/2 inches up sides of a 9-inch spring-form pan. Bake at 325 degrees F for 8 to 10 minutes; set crust aside.

Place strawberries in container of an electric blender; process until smooth, stopping once to scrape down sides. Reserve 1/2 cup purée.

Beat cream cheese at medium speed with an electric mixer until fluffy. Gradually add sugar, beating well. Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition. Stir in 1/2 cup strawberry puree, lime juice, tequila and Triple Sec.

Pour into prepared pan; pour reserved strawberry purée on top in a circle and gently swirl batter with a knife.

Bake at 325 degrees F for 1 hour and 10 minutes (center will be soft). Remove from oven and run knife around edge of pan to release sides. return to oven; turn oven off and leave cheesecake in oven 30 minutes.

Remove cheesecake from oven and let cool completely on a wire rack.

Remove from pan; cover with plastic wrap and chill for 8 hours.

Do not cover with aluminum foil. Garnish if desired.

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