Monday, 10 June 2013

Baked New York Style Cheesecake

While I should have been baking sensible lunch box related treats, winter weather just kept  bringing the idea of baked cheese cake into view. As you can tell, I love cheese cake. It's probably my favourite sweet treat. 

Having not made a baked cheese cake in years, I didn't even know where to start looking for a recipe. So, after a quick book shelf scout around I adapted this one from a recipe in a little book simply entitled Sweet Food. 

The original recipe had a sour cream topping, but preferring the classic New York style, I left it off and also substituted the plain biscuit base for a spicy Gingernut option.
It's super easy to make. The hardest part is getting the baking time correct.

New York Style Baked Cheesecake

250g gingernut biscuits - crushed
1 teaspoon ground mixed spice
100g butter - melted

500g cream cheese, at room temperature - don't use the low fat version, it wont work for you.
3/4 cup caster sugar
4 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
the juice of one lemon
the zest of two lemons

Line the sides of a 20 to 25cm loose bottom baking tin with baking paper. Pre-heat the oven to 175deg. C.

Finely crush the biscuits and blend with the spice and melted butter. Press the biscuit mixture into the base and sides of the lined tin. Cover and chill while you make the filling.

Beat the cream cheese and sugar until smooth and glossy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition. Mix in the vanilla, zest and juice. 

Pour the mixture into the crumb base and bake for 50 minutes until the mixture has risen a little, is firm, but still has a wobble in the middle. Turn the oven off, open the door and leave the cheesecake in the oven to cool for about an hour. 

Take from the oven and allow to cool completely before covering with food wrap and refrigerating overnight. 

Once chilled, unveil by standing the baking tin on a large glass or mug and pulling the sides of the tin down to release the cake. Carefully peel off the paper and loose the bottom using a spatula. Slide the cake onto a serving platter. 

Cut using a large knife - cleaning the knife in between each cut in order to keep the slices neat. Serve with a little whipped cream and whatever fruit you have handy. 

Surprisingly easy to make, this cheesecake is always a crowd pleaser. 

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