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[Photograph: @sstiavetti]

I have a major thing for cheesecake. Despite my devotion, it's one of those decadent desserts that I seem to save for special occasions, even though it doesn't take a lot of work to put one together. Maybe it's the luxurious texture of the cream cheese, maybe it's the way a cheesecake's sweetness glides across your palate in a wave of fatty, creamy adoration. Whatever the reason, I need to stop holding out on myself and realize that cheesecake can be an everyday dessert.

This particular cheesecake recipe is especially near to my heart. Tart strawberries crank up the volume, but a whisper of almond flavoring and a simple almond-flour crust round out the berries' assertive personality, making for a great balance of fruity and nutty. A healthy dose of crème fraîche wraps the whole thing up in a pretty little bow.

Tall and moist, this cheesecake serves up a middle ground between uber-rich and feather light. A touch of butter and a few more egg yolks give it a dreamy, custardy texture, while the strawberries provide a little texture where normally there might be none.

Overall, this dish is perfect for any seasonal events to which you want to bring a little sunshine. If you're aching for strawberry cheesecake outside of strawberry season, feel free to use frozen berries—they're picked at the peak of ripeness and are particularly full of flavor.

Get the Recipe

Strawberry Almond Cheesecake »

About the author: Stephanie Stiavetti is a writer and cookbook author in San Francisco. Stephanie's cookbook, Melt: the Art of Macaroni and Cheese, celebrates America's favorite dish by recreating it with small production, specialty cheeses. Her food blog, The Culinary Life, is a repository for all things comfort food related, from savory dinners to transcendental desserts.

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