Preheat the oven to 150 deg Celsius.
Start by lining the base of a 22cm springform pan with baking paper. Grease the entire pan and the baking paper.
Place digestive biscuits in a tough zip lock bag. Use a rolling pin and bash hard at the biscuits till they have a fine texture.
Add 1/2 C of melted butter to the crushed biscuits. Mix well.
Pour the mixture into the baking pan.
Using the flat base of a glass or a potato masher. Press hard to compress the crumbs tightly.
Add 1 cup of sugar in a saucepan. Add 1/4 cup of water to the sugar. Heat the sugar mixture on medium heat and stir till sugar melts.
Once the mixture is boiling, leave the pan uncovered and softly boil for about 5mins without stirring.
Watch the mixture. The sugar burns really easily. Start slowing down the heat when the sugar mixture starts to turn into a golden caramel colour. When the caramel syrup has become a thick golden colour, turn off the heat.
Remove from heat and slowly whisk in 1 cup of heavy cream (room temperature). Keep stirring continuously. Mix thoroughly.
Now add the salt. Use the finest sea salt you can find. It really makes a difference. Add 1.5 teaspoons of sea salt. Stir through.
Set aside the caramel mixture to let it cool slightly.
In the meantime, place 3 blocks of cream cheese (room temperature) in a mixing bowl. Beat gently at the slowest setting till the mixture is smooth and creamy.
Add 3 large eggs, one at a time beating gently.
Add 1 heaping tablespoon of cornstarch and 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract. Mix gently to combine.
Mix well till the mixture is smooth and thick. Do not overbeat the mixture as there will be too much air in the batter and the cake will rise and sink later causing many cracks on top.
Pour the caramel mixture into the cream cheese mixture. Mix gently at slowest setting till well combined.
Pour the filling into the cake pan.
Wrap the pan with aluminum foil and sit the cheese cake pan in a larger roasting pan. Pour boiling water into the large roasting pan till the water reaches halfway of the cheesecake pan.
Bake the cheesecake for 1 hour.
Remove cake and cover with a large bowl and allow to cool.
Chill for at least 4 hours before serving. Serve with some maple syrup or caramel, if preferred.