Wednesday, April 07, 2010

A Fabulous and Easy Cheesecake

This is my go-to cheesecake recipe. It is very easy and incredibly delicious. It is light and as one person recently said, "It tastes like spring."

It can be made Kosher for Passover by omitting the cornstarch and using six egg yolks instead of three eggs.

There is no crust. You can press one on if you like after you unmold it, but I never do. It just does not need it.

Be careful not to whip too much air into the batter. The cake will rise and then fall. It will still taste great, but won't look as lovely as the one in this picture.

Basic Cheesecake

Prepare an 8 inch spring form pan by greasing it, cutting a round of parchment or aluminum foil to fit into the bottom and then greasing the foil. Wrap the bottom of the spring form pan with a double layer of foil to prevent leakage.

Have ready a large roasting pan into which the spring form pan will fit. This will be the water bath.

Preheat your oven to 350.

Ingredients: All at room temperature.

Two 8 oz packages Philadelphia Brand Cream Cheese (do not use any other brand or a low fat kind)
1 cup of sugar
3 eggs (or 6 egg yolks if you want it to be Kosher for Passover)
1.5 tsp vanilla
3 T freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 T cornstarch (omit if using 6 egg yolks)
3 cups sour cream (full fat)

1. Beat the cream cheese and sugar together on medium high for three minutes until light and fluffy.
2. Beat in (on a low speed) cornstarch if using.
3. Add eggs one at a time, beating on a lower speed only until incorporated.
4. Add vanilla and lemon juice in the same manner as eggs. Mix by hand to finish uniformly incorporating everything.
5. Mix in the sour cream. Use a low speed or do this by hand until uniform. Do not beat air into the batter.
6. Place the prepared pan into the roasting pan. Then pour the batter into the spring form pan. 7. Pour about an inch of very hot water into the roasting pan.
8. Place the roasting pan with the spring form pan into the oven.
9. Bake for 45 minutes.
10. Turn off oven and without opening the door, leave the cake in the oven for 60 minutes
11. Remove from oven, place the spring form pan on a cooling rack. You will want to either place a towel under the rack or put the rack over a cookie sheet. There will be seepage from the cheesecake.
12. Cool for at least an hour, then refrigerate over night. I put plastic wrap over the top of the pan and put the pan on a plate to catch additional fluid that will seep from the cake.
14. To unmold, run a thin knife around the sides of the pan. ( I usually find this unnecessary). Open the spring form pan and remove the sides. Place a serving plate on the top of the cake and flip it over. Remove the bottom and the liner from what is now the top of the cake. I serve it upside down because the bottom is usually pristine whereas the top often has some brown spots. If there is moisture on the cake, just blot it gently with a paper towel.
15. Serve naked or topped with fruit.
16. Enjoy the praise and compliments.

Adapted from The Cake Bible.

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