4 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened at room temperature
1 teaspoon cardamom, ground
1 teaspoon cinnamon, ground
1/2 teaspoon ginger, ground
1/4 teaspoon cloves, ground
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg, freshly grated
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
3 large eggs, room temperature
Granulated sugar, for topping
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and line the side of a 9-inch springform pan with a strip of parchment paper.
Combine crust ingredients and press evenly across the bottom and up the sides of the pan. Bake for 10 minutes and remove from oven.
In a small bowl, combine all spices and salt. In the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, combine cream cheese and sugar until just smooth. Then add sour cream, vanilla bean paste, spices, and then mix. Add one egg at a time and mix until just combined. Do not over mix.
Pour the filling over the crust, spread evenly, and tap the tray gently on the counter to release any air bubbles. Wrap the bottom half with foil and place on a deep baking tray or roasting pan. Transfer to the preheated oven and carefully pour enough hot water to reach 1 inch up the side of the pan.
Bake for 1 hour or until the filling is mostly set and the center is a little jiggly. Turn off the oven and crack the oven door open to let it cool inside for 1 hour. Chill in the fridge overnight or until it feels more firm.
Before serving, sprinkle an even layer of sugar on top of the cheesecake. Use a torch to caramelize the sugar until crisp. If using a broiler, freeze the cheesecake for at least 2 hours before adding sugar and broiling. Allow the sugar to harden.