a bite!

There was a time when I disliked cheesecake.

That’s right, you saw those three words in sequential order. Funny story actually about how I came about to like cheesecake.

My dad, who according to my mother, has this habit of pulling out of the driveway and then stopping for a few brief seconds to fasten his seat-belt. Well, one time, our neighbor across the street didn’t realize that my dad had stopped and rammed right into his rear. Since my dad agreed to get the car fixed without getting insurance involved (and got a darn good deal too), our neighbor thanked us by buying us a cheesecake from a local bakery. Guess where that cheesecake went.

Guess what I’ve been doing since I realized how easy it is to make cheesecake.

Cheesecake is quite easy to make, even without electricity. Yep. This cheesecake was made with a whole lotta sweat love. My arm was so sore after. It’s not the same trying to beat with your left arm if you’re a righty.

This is one of my favorite New York Cheesecake Recipes and the raspberry sauce is inspired by a FOOD & WINE recipe, whereby someone made a blueberry sauce. Well, raspberries were on sale and blueberries weren’t so I improvised.

New York Cheesecake
Baking Illustrated

Ingredients:

Graham Cracker Crust

  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 tablespoon melted unsalted butter for greasing the pan
  • 8 whole graham crackers (4 oz)
  • 1 tablespoon sugar

Cheesecake

  • Five 8-oz packages of cream cheese, cut into 1 inch chunks at room temp
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1/3 sour cream (or yogurt)
  • 2 teaspoons juice from 1 lemon
  • 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 large egg yolks plus 6 large eggs at room temp

Recipe:

Graham Cracker Crust

graham crust
If you have a food processor, great! Throw the graham crackers in there and pulverize until they turn into powder (or fine crumbs). If not, seal them in a ziplock bag, take out your rolling pin, and bang them into tiny bits.

Preheat your oven to 325 degrees.

Brush the bottom and sides of a 9-inch springform pan with the 1/2 tablespoon of melted butter. Combined the graham cracker crumbs, sugar, and 5 tablespoons of melted butter. Toss with a fork until evenly moistened. Empty the crumbs into the springform pan and press into the pan using your fingers. You can use a spoon to press the crumbs. Bake in the oven for 10-12 minutes. Cool on a wire wrack while making the filling.

Cheesecake

cream cheese
wo-man + fork v. cream cheese

This is so much easier if you have a mixer. First increase the oven temperature to 500 degrees. Be aware that some springform pans advise baking only up to 475 degrees. If so, adjust the temperature to 475; it really doesn’t make THAT much of a difference.

Assuming that you have a standing mixer, beat the cream cheese at medium-low speed for 1 minute. You just want to soften it. Then, add in the salt and half the sugar. Continue beating at medium-low speed until combined (for another minute). Scrape the sides of the bowl and beat in the remaining sugar until combined. This should take 1 minute too. Then, add sour cream (or yogurt), lemon juice, and vanilla. Scrap the sides and beat at low speed until thoroughly combined (another minute!). Add the egg yolks, continue beating. Then add the remaining eggs, two at a time. This should take 1 more minute. Be sure to scrape the bowl in between the eggs.

Pour the filling into the cooled crust and bake for 10 minutes without opening the oven door. Then, reduce the oven temp to 200 degrees and continue to bake until the cheesecake reads 150 degrees on an instant read thermometer. If you don’t have a thermometer, just bake until the middle stops jiggling. This should take about 1.5 hours.

Transfer the cake to a wire rack and cool until barely warm, about 2-3 hours. Chill in the fridge for at least 3 hours. Overnight is best!

An hour before you’re ready to serve, make the topping…

Raspberry Sauce
Adapted from FOOD & WINE

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound blueberries
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • Pinch of salt

Recipe:

In a medium saucepan, mix the blueberries with the sugar. Cook over moderate heat until the blueberries begin to burst, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat. Transfer 1/2 cup of the blueberries to a blender and puree; scrape the puree back into the sauce. Stir in the lemon juice and salt and serve the sauce warm.

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This post is part of a series featuring recipes from the FOOD & WINE archive.  As a FOOD & WINE Blogger Correspondent, I was chosen to do four recipes a week from FOOD & WINE.  I received a subscription to FOOD & WINE for my participation.