Grate zest from lemons. Reserve 1 Tablespoon for preparation of lemon curd; set aside 1 Tablespoon for cheesecake batter. Juice lemons, collecting ½ cup of juice.
Beat butter and sugar with electric mixer until well blended.
Blend in eggs.
Gradually add lemon to mixture while continuing to blend on low speed. Resulting mixture will appear curdled.
Transfer mixture a heavy 2 quart sauce pan and place over medium heat. Stir in lemon zest. Cook whisking constantly until mixture thickens (5 to 7 minutes.)
Transfer to a bowl and place plastic wrap or a piece of parchment paper directly on the surface of the warm curd. Chill until firm and fully cooled (at least 4 hours). Yields 1¾ cups.
Preheat oven to 325°F. Line 9-inch spring form pan with parchment and lightly butter the sides of the pan.
Beat cream cheese at low speed on electric mixer until smooth.
Gradually add sugar and 1 Tablespoon lemon zest until blended.
Add eggs one at a time blending until yellow is incorporated after each addition. Keep mixer speed low to avoid whipping in too much air.
Pour ⅔ of batter into prepared pan. Add about ½ cup of lemon curd, evenly by spoonful’s to the top of the batter leaving about a ½-inch space from sides of the pan. Gently swirl curd with knife. Add remaining batter and gently smooth top with spatula.
Bake for about 60 minutes or until center is almost set. Turn oven off and allow cheesecake to set in the oven for an additional 20 minutes. Remove cheesecake from oven and run a knife around the edge of the cake to loosen it from the pan. Do not remove the sides of the pan. Let the cake cool completely on a rack (about 1½ hours). Cover pan and chill for at least 12 hours.
Remove the sides of the pan. Transfer cheesecake platter and spoon an additional ½ to ¾-cup of lemon curd over the top. When slicing cheesecake, rinse off knife between slices for smoother cuts. Remaining lemon curd may be served as an accompaniment or reserved for another purpose.
This recipe is gluten-free.