My love affair with cheesecake
I love cheesecakes. Baked cheesecakes, not the gelatine-based. For the last few months, I have been on the quest to find the perfect baked cheesecake recipe. I have tried at least 10 different permutations and combinations, recipes from different blogs, and so on. The first recipe I chose was from the Queen herself, Martha Stewart. This recipe looked very easy to make (Link Below). Didn’t seem complicated at all. Just a quick mix and into the oven, like most cheesecake recipes. I followed the recipe and it turned out fine, not great, fine. The cheesecake was a little hard set and crumbly(Because I overcooked it), wasn’t smooth or creamy (I set the temperature too high) and I did not let it set for the required time(Patience is key for any cheesecake). But nevertheless, the taste was there. At that point in time, I didn’t know much about cheesecakes. But over the months, I think I’ve learnt a thing or two about the entire process.
Recently I came across a recipe for a sour cream cheesecake (Link Below). The recipe looked very interesting, in the sense, it had so much sour cream in proportion to the cream cheese. Normally, all of the cheesecakes I make need only 2-4 tablespoons of sour cream, which is a quarter cup at the most to 400-450 grams of cream cheese. This recipe had a massive 1 cup sour cream to 400 grams cream cheese ( almost 2 cups). The resulting cheesecake set beautifully, was incredibly smooth and ultra creamy. But in terms of taste, it was definitely sour cream heavy.
Last week, I decided to make another batch of cheesecake. By now, I guess I knew most of my mistakes, and what I needed to do to fix them. I’ll share a few mistakes that I have made and what I did to fix them. The cheesecake turned out so smooth, rich and creamy, with the right amount of tang.
All you need to do for the base is, crush some biscuits, add the melted butter to it, then the sugar and the flour. Add it to the cheesecake tin, and press it against the base and the sides, either with your hand or some hard surface. The recipe makes a generous amount for the base. And I love to keep the base generously thick. Bake it in the oven for about 30 mins till it’s golden and set it aside to cool.
For the filling, just mix in each ingredient starting from the cream cheese, sour cream, sugar, vanilla, eggs and the egg yolks. Just keep in mind to beat the mix for 30-40 seconds each step, before adding the next ingredient. Prepare a water bath for the cheesecake pan. Bake it in the oven for 45 mins.
Let it cool completely in the oven itself. Then leave it in the refrigerator overnight to set. Or atleast 6-8 hours.
Cook time: 45 mins
Total time: 10 mins + 45 mins+ overnight
Crushed biscuits: 2 cups
melted butter: 1 cup
flour: 1/4 cup
Sugar: 1/4 cup
Cream cheese: 400 gms
Sugar: 1/2 cup
Sour cream: 1/2 cup
Vanilla: 1 tablespoon
Egg yolk: 2
Corn starch: 1.5 teaspoons
- For the base, preheat the oven to 200 degrees Celsius. Mix together the melted butter and the biscuit crumbs. To that, add the flour and sugar. It should resemble wet sand. It should stick when pressed together. put it in the Prepared cheesecake tin and press it against the base and the sides of the cheesecake tin (8 inches) . Bake for 30-35 mins or until golden. Set aside to cool.
- For the water bath, heat water in a kettle. Keep a roasting tray or a cake tin that is bigger than the prepared cheesecake tin. let the water come to a boil.
- For the filling, preheat the oven to 160 degrees Celsius. Soften the cream cheese in a mixing bowl. To that add the sour cream, sugar, vanilla, egg, egg yolks, corn starch, one by one beating after each addition. Add this to the cheesecake tin. place it in the water bath and bake for about 40-45 mins till the centre (5-7 cm in diameter) is still jiggly and looks undercooked but the rest looks set.
- Leave it in the oven for 2-3 hours, till it comes to room temperature, then leave it in the refrigerator for 6-8 hours, or overnight.