There are so many recipes for cheesecake out there, but essentially they have the same ingredients with variations in the flavor, the different crusts you can make as well as how to actually bake them. I used to make cheesecakes regularly, especially when I lived in Germany and had different options due to different types of cheese available. I am lazy when it comes to actually baking the cheesecake, so I don't use a water bath, but if you decide to use one, the cheesecake will not crack like mine does and it also keeps the text more consistent. Both methods work, but depending on time and desire, pick which you would rather do.
Being that I have made so many cheesecakes in the past, I don't really follow a recipe. I did read about 3 recipes before I made this particular one only because I didn't want to miss an ingredient that I used to use. I nearly did forget to add the sugar, but remembered in the nick of time.
At any rate....
For the crust:
about 1.5 to 2 cups of graham crackers crumbs
about 1/2 cup sugar
5 Tablespoons butter (note: I always use unsalted butter)
Mix together well and pat into a spring form pan.
For the filling:
4 8oz packages of cream cheese
2 Dessert spoons sour cream
1 cup heavy cream
1/4 to 1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup - 3/4 cup sugar
Vanilla extract (about 1/2 teaspoon to 1 teaspoon)
Mix all the filling ingredients until smooth. All ingredients should be at room temperature to ensure maximum smoothness. Heat the oven to 350-375 F. Pour the filling on top of the pressed crust. Smooth the top. Bake for about 1 hour 20 minutes, or until center is set. Remove from oven and cool. When cool release from the spring form pan. Refrigerate overnight and serve chilled.