Preheat the oven to 325 degrees and grease a 9 inch springform pan.You will need a large roasting pan that’s bigger and longer than the springform pan. (I use the aluminum foil disposable ones).If you are not sure about your springform holding up in water, you can wrap the outside of the springform pan in heavy duty aluminum foil from bottom up to the sides. (I recommend wrapping the outside of the springform in foil before adding the crust and cheesecake batter.)
Mix the graham cracker crumbs, sugar, molasses, melted butter, and spices. Stir very well, until all incorporated.
Grease the inside of the springform pan with some cooking spray and spread crumb mixture in the bottom on the prepared springform.
Press the graham cracker mixture all over the bottom and a little up the sides.
In a bowl of an electric mixer, beat cream cheese on medium-high speed for about a minute, until smooth and fluffy. Scrape sides and bottom on the bowl and beat for another minute.
Beat in sugar and then and add eggs, one at a time. Beat it until smooth and stop to scrape bottom and sides of the bowl.
Beat in molasses, sour cream, heavy whipping cream, and vanilla extract.
Lower the speed and mix in spices and cornstarch. Scrape sides and bottom of the bowl and mix for a few more seconds to make sure everything is evenly mixed.
Transfer batter into the springform and spread in evenly.
Baking the Cheesecake:
Place a large roasting pan into the oven and place cheesecake springform inside the roasting pan. Carefully add hot water to the roasting pan, about half way up the side of the springform.
Bake for 85 minutes. Turn off the oven and open the oven door half way. Let cheesecake rest for 10-15 minutes and take it out of the oven. Take off the foil wrap off the pan.
Let it rest for 10 minutes on the counter and then gently run a butter knife between sides of the cheesecakes and the springform to carefully separate it. (You don’t actually have to take the cheesecake out of the pan until ready to serve.)
Cool cheesecake for an hour and then cover the pan with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 6 hours or overnight.
Tips: Make sure to soften the cream cheese for about 30-45 minutes on the counter first but keep heavy whipping cream cold. Use a whisk attachment on the mixer.
Start beating cream cheese and powdered sugar for about a minute on medium-high speed.
Slowly pour in heavy whipping cream while it's mixing. Add maple syrup and maple extract (if using). Continue beating until frosting is whipped into stiff peaks and waves. (It won't take long so don't walk away.)
Transfer the frosting onto a piping bag fitted with a decorative tip and decorate the top of the cheesecake.
Frost and decorate the cooled cheesecake as you wish!