"OH-MY-GOSH!" Seriously, that's how they should rename this cheesecake. You'll only be able to say "OH-MY-GOSH" every time you take a bite. Actually, that's not true. Towards the end, it will be more like this... "OH-MY-GOSH, I'm going to throw up if I eat another bite, but OH-MY-GOSH-I-CAN'T-STOP!!" This is not a lie, people. I went to bed Wednesday night with a stomach so full of cheesecake, I couldn't even finish harvesting my Farmville crops! I was K.O.-ed by cheesecake! But it was allll worth it because I got to use up two lonely egg yolks that were hanging out in the fridge, AND I found my very first go-to cheesecake recipe. SUCCESS!!I'm kinda proud of my photos in this post. I guess the daylight just happened to be very suitable at the exact moment I got these shots because usually my photos are nowhere near this good! Sorry for tooting my own horn. You can tell me to stop whenever you'd like! ;)NEW YORK CHEESECAKE (from "The America’s Test Kitchen Family Baking Book")
8 whole graham crackers, broken into 1-inch pieces
6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled, plus 1 tablespoon for brushing pan
3 tablespoons sugar
2 1/2 pounds cream cheese, cut into chunks and softened (I used 2 packs Neufchâtel and 3 packs regular)
1 1/2 cups (10 1/2 ounces) sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup sour cream (I used reduced fat)
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 large egg yolks
6 large eggs
1. Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 325 degrees. Process the graham cracker pieces in a food processor to fine, even crumbs, about 30 seconds. Sprinkle the melted butter and sugar over the crumbs and pulse to incorporate. Sprinkle the mixture into a 9-inch springform pan (I used a 10" pan and still got a tall cheesecake). Press the crumbs firmly into an even layer using the bottom of a measuring cup. Bake the crust until fragrant and beginning to brown, 10 to 15 minutes. Let the crust cool to room temperature, about 30 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, increase the oven temperature to 500 degrees. Beat the cream cheese in a large bowl with an electric mixer on medium-low speed until smooth, 1 to 3 minutes. Scrape down the bowl and beaters as needed.
3. Beat in half of the sugar and salt until incorporated, 1 to 3 minutes. Beat in the remaining sugar until incorporated, 1 to 3 minutes. Beat in the sour cream, lemon juice, and vanilla until incorporated, 1 to 3 minutes. Beat in the egg yolks and eggs, two at a time, until combined, 1 to 3 minutes.
4. Being careful not to disturb the baked crust, brush the inside of the prepared springform pan with melted butter. Set the pan on a rimmed baking sheet. Carefully pour the filling into the pan. Bake the cheesecake for 10 minutes.
5. Without opening the oven door, reduce the oven temperature to 200 degrees and continue to bake the cheesecake until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the center of the cake registers 150 degrees, about 1 1/2 hours, rotating the pan halfway through baking.
6. Transfer the cake to a wire rack and run a knife around the edge of the cake. Let the cheesecake cool until just barely warm, 2 1/2 to 3 hours, running a knife around the edge of the cake every hour or so. Wrap the pan tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate until cold, at least 3 hours.
7. To unmold the cheesecake, wrap a wet, hot kitchen towel around the cake pan and let sit for 1 minute. Remove the sides of the pan and carefully slide the cake onto a cake platter. Let the cheesecake sit at room temperature for 30 minutes before serving. (I think this is a matter of preference. We liked ours cold, straight from the fridge!) The cooled, tightly wrapped cake can be refrigerated for up to 4 days.
MAKES about 3 cups
4 cups (20 ounces) fresh strawberries, hulled and sliced thin
1/4 cup (1 3/4 ounces) sugar
1/2 cup strawberry jam
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
(1 tablespoon cornstarch, my own addition)
1. Toss the strawberries, sugar, and salt together in a large bowl and let sit, stirring occasionally, until the strawberries have released their juice and the sugar has dissolved, about 30 minutes.
2. Process the jam in a food processor (or blender) until smooth, about 8 seconds. Simmer the jam in a small saucepan over medium heat until no longer foamy, about 3 minutes. Stir the warm jam mixture and the lemon juice into the strawberries. Let the topping cool to room temperature before serving, about 1 hour. Serve at room temperature or chilled.
(I chilled this mixture overnight, but I wanted it to be thicker, almost like pie filling. So, I strained the liquid off of the strawberries, reserved about 3 tablespoons of it in a measuring cup, and brought the rest to a simmer. I whisked 1 tablespoon of cornstarch into the reserved 3 tablespoons of strawberry juice, then stirred that into the simmering pot. I brought it back to a simmer and whisked it for about 3 minutes to thicken. I chilled that until completely cold, and then stirred it back into the strawberries. The result was a nice, thick strawberry glaze!)
Flour Child Bakery opens in Virginia Beach!
My mom and I just opened a bakery in Virginia Beach!! "Like" us to stay updated! If you care to read our blog, it's flourchildbakery.blogspot.com.