Cookbook: The Cook’s Companion by Stephanie Alexander
The first time I tried to make this recipe was a few months ago. I had agreed to make a birthday cake for hubby’s cousin and found out he likes cheesecakes, so what better recipe to use than one that had “best ever” in its name?
Things didn’t exactly go according to plan and after the 50 minutes spent baking the cake and a further one hour resting it in the oven, you can imagine my devastation when I realised that the water bath had leaked into the cheesecake and ruined it! It was already 11pm and I had to work the next day so there was no chance I would be able to make it again.
I thought it would be a good recipe to make for the “soft” theme week, though the biscuit crust is not exactly soft, the cheesecake filling is. I wasn’t able to take my usual photos of the process as I was rushing to get it finished, but the steps are pretty straight forward.
Given my disaster with the water bath last time, I decided to skip it this time. Cheesecakes are prone to cracking and the water bath is supposed to help prevent this by introducing some moisture into the oven. Stephanie Alexander says that cracked cheesecakes usually means they have been baked at too high a temperature. Surprisingly, my cheesecake was only cracked very slightly on the side, even without using a water bath!
Stephanie also says that the mixture should not be over-beaten as this is likely to lead to the mixture sinking in the oven as the extra volume deflates.
Best ever baked cheesecake
Adapted from The Cook’s Companion by Stephanie Alexander
125g butter, melted
250g Nice biscuits (or wheatmeal biscuits)
500g cream cheese, at room temperature
200g castor sugar
1 tablespoon cornflour
2 tablespoons lemon juice
pinch of salt
2 cups sour cream
1. Preheat oven to 180C (160C fan forced).
2. Brush base and sides of a 22cm springform tin with a little of the melted butter.
3. Line base of tin with baking paper.
4. Crush biscuits in a food processor. Add remaining butter and process.
5. Press crumb mixture into base and sides of tin, tapping firmly with the base of a glass tumbler as you go.
6. Beat cream cheese and sugar in an electric mixer until smooth.
7. Beat in cornflour, then add eggs one at a time, beating each time just until smooth.
8. Add lemon juice and salt.
9. Add sour cream and beat briefly to combine.
10. Pour batter into tin and bake for 50 minutes, then turn off oven but do not open door for 1 hour.
11. Cool completely in tin on a wire rack and refrigerate for several hours or overnight before serving.
Results: OMG, if you like cheesecakes, you will absolutely love this recipe! It was so delightfully creamy and soft but so light at the same time. It tasted amazing and is one of the best cheesecakes I have ever had. A number of people tried a piece and everyone was blown away by how delicious it was! You have to try it for yourself!
Would I make it again? Yes, definitely.
Over & Out, Rilsta xx