10 ounces fresh or frozen (thawed) cranberries
¼ cup freshly squeezed orange juice
1 1/3 cups plus 2 Tablespoons sugar, divided
32 ounces cream cheese, room temperature, cut into pieces
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
4 eggs, room temperature
1 pint sour cream, room temperature
2 teaspoons finely grated orange zest
This recipe requires advance preparation. Preheat the oven to 275°F and position the rack on the bottom of the oven. Butter and flour a 9-inch springform pan and set aside. Combine the cranberries with the orange juice and ¼ cup of water in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Stir occasionally until the cranberries burst and the liquid is reduced. Remove the mixture from heat and stir in 1⁄3 cup of the sugar until it is fully dissolved. Strain the mixture, discard the solids and let the purée cool completely. In a large bowl, combine the cream cheese with the remaining 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons of sugar and the vanilla. Beat the mixture until smooth using an electric mixer at low speed. Add the eggs one at a time, beating just until blended. Stir in the sour cream and orange zest.
Pour half of the cream cheese mixture into the prepared pan. Distribute 6 to 8 teaspoons of the cranberry purée evenly over the top. Spoon half of the remaining cheesecake mixture evenly over the first layer and dot with half of the remaining purée. Repeat with the remaining cheesecake mixture and purée. (Avoid dropping purée in the center of more than 1 layer). With a dinner knife, cut through the batter in a swirling motion to distribute the cranberry purée. Place the pan on a baking sheet and bake for 1 hour. Turn the oven off and leave the cheesecake in for 1 more hour. Transfer the cake to a rack and let it cool to room temperature. Release the sides of the pan. Cover the cheesecake and refrigerate overnight before serving. Serves 12.