Melting in your mouth, cheese and cake coalesce to produce a lip smacking dessert. None of us can resist this mouth-watering and delicious dessert. Cheesecake is an all-time favorite dessert. Try these mouthwatering cheesecake recipes.
What is a cheesecake?
Cheesecakes are cheese-based desserts that are generally prepared with soft fresh cheese accompanied by sugar, egg, and cream. Rum or chocolate is added for flavor and fruits like strawberry are used for toppings. The topping or the filling in a cheesecake is crusty. Digestive biscuit, cookies, or a pastry can be used for this purpose. Cheesecakes can also be topped with fruit sauces if fresh cheese is the key ingredient in baking the cake. Cheesecakes can be classified into two types
- Baked cheesecake
- No-bake cheesecake
Egg is the main ingredient in baked type of cheesecake. This cake has a heavy and rich consistency and has to be refrigerated before serving. Plenty of cream cheese is used to bake a traditional cheesecake. These cakes are therefore called cheesecakes. Health conscious people need no longer worry as low-fat, fat-free ingredients can be used to bake delicious low-fat cheesecakes. Low-calorie cheesecakes are made from low-fat cheese and light whipped cream toppings.
Plenty of recipes are available to bake cheesecakes and with a blend of judicious flavors, you can come up with tasty cheesecakes. You can choose to add:
- fruits/tropical fruits
- berry/cherry topping
- chocolate syrup/chips/shavings
- candy canes
- spearmint leaves
The crust that is used to bake the cheesecake plays a vital role in imparting the perfect taste to the cake. Commonly used crusts are:
- honey graham crackers
- cinnamon graham crackers
- chocolate graham crackers
- crust can be made from crumbled cookies too
- for low-fat cheesecakes, crust can be made from vanilla wafers or animal crackers
- Readymade chocolate crusts are also available in the market.
Popular varieties of baked cheesecakes
American cheesecakes are primarily made from cream cheese, eggs and egg yolks. The New York style cheesecake is also popular as the Jewish cheesecake and is baked in a 13 to 15cm tall spring pan. Cottage cheese, lemon, chocolate, or strawberry can be added as variants in the basic recipe. Sour cream style cheesecake is as popular as the New York cheesecake. This version of cheesecake uses cream cheese but does not use heavy cream. Most of the factories manufacture cheesecakes in this method as this can be frozen for longer periods without messing up the texture of the cheesecake.
Vancouver style cheesecakes, as they are referred to, are light and are made without a crust. Vanilla and chocolate flavors are predominantly used in baking cheesecakes; they are served after refrigerating them for a while. They are served with raspberries, cherries or Columbia strawberries.
Mizithra cheese and Mascarpone cheese are used to bake this style of cheesecakes.
Cheesecakes are light and gelatin is used as the binding ingredient. These cheesecakes derive their flavor from Neufchatel cheese (variety of cream cheese).
They are made from curdled milk. The milk is curdled by adding rennet. After the milk curdles, it is baked and served warm. Swedish cheesecakes can also be made from cottage cheese; these cakes are served with whipped cream, ice cream, or jam. Swedish cheesecakes are more popular as ostkaka.
The main ingredients are egg and corn starch; they have a soft and silky texture.
German style cheesecake:
Quark cheese is used to bake German style cheesecake; Germany is very popular for its distinct flavors of cheesecakes.
Belgian/Dutch style cheesecakes are traditionally flavored using bittersweet chocolate.
Mascarpone or ricotta cheese is used for baking. Sugar is used instead of honey, barley flakes and vanilla extract is used to bake this cake. Bay leaves are not used; at times small pieces of candied fruits are added. Roman cheesecakes blend ricotta-like cheese and honey with flour and are shaped into loaves. Few recipes use bay leaves, as these leaves act as a preservative.
This cake, as the name suggests needs no cooking and is very simple to make. This cake has a fluffy appearance and is lighter in consistency. This cake has to be refrigerated before serving. Pre-mixes are available in the market to prepare these types of cheesecakes. The pre-mix includes the crust and the filling.
- Add some margarine or butter to the graham cracker mixture and spread it on a pie pan.
- Add milk to the filling mixture to resemble a pudding.
- Stir it well ensuring sure no lumps form.
- Pour this mixture into the pie crust.
- Refrigerate it until done (the cheesecake has to be firm).
- Cheesecake is ready in a jiffy to serve.
Popular varieties of no-bake cheesecakes
British/ Australia/Asian cheesecake:
Cheesecakes are not baked or cooked but are served as cold desserts in the United Kingdom, New Zealand and Australia. Cheesecakes in these countries are made from a combination of broken digestive biscuits and butter. The mixture is then put into a dish and spread evenly at the bottom layer of the cake. The topping or the filling is made from a combination of cheese, sugar, milk, and gelatin (optional).
Tips to bake cheesecake
Though only a few ingredients go into the making of a cheesecake, you should know when to stop baking it. Follow these useful tips and bake the best of cheesecakes:
- Cheesecakes are baked with egg, thus you should stop baking them at the precise time else the cake will crack.
- Since cheesecakes are dependant on eggs to set, you have to cook them slowly and lightly.
- Use good quality cream cheese for baking.
- Use solid cream cheese and not whipped cream cheese as whipped cream will already have air in it.
- Keep all the ingredients at room temperature for at least an hour before you begin baking the cheesecake.
- Beat the cream cheese thoroughly (it should be soft and creamy) before you add sugar to it.
- Make sure no lumps are formed while beating the cheese and the sugar.
- Avoid excessive beating of the ingredients as this may cause cracks in the cheesecake.
- While the cheesecake is baking in the oven, do not open the oven. Cold air can also cause cracks in the cheesecake.
- Baking temperature has to be perfect else the cake will not come out well. Preheat the oven before baking the cheesecake.
- The cheesecake is done once the sides are done well; the middle part remains a little shaky.
- Allow the cheesecake to cool down slowly on its own; sudden alteration in temperature can cause cracks in the cake.
- Once cake is done, slice it with a knife that has been dipped in hot water and wiped well.
Cream cheese 8 ounce
Cherry pie filling 21 ounce
White sugar ¾ cup
Vanilla extract 1tsp
Preheat oven to 350 F. Use paper liners to line muffin tins. Crush the vanilla wafers; put ½ spoon of this crushed wafer into each of the paper cups. Beat sugar, eggs, cream cheese, and vanilla in a mixing bowl until the mixture gets light and airy. Fill this mixture in the muffin tins until it is almost full. Bake for fifteen minutes. Cool and serve with a teaspoon of cherry filling as topping.
Nutritional information – 95 calories per serving, Cholesterol – 19mg, dietary fiber – 0.2g, total carbohydrates – 11.9g, total fat – 4.8g, sodium – 54mg, protein – 1.3g
Pumpkin cheesecake recipe
Cream cheese softened
Vanilla extract ½ tsp
Pumpkin puree ½ cup
Prepared graham cracker crust
Sugar ½ cup
Frozen whipped topping – ½ cup, thawed
Preheat oven to 325 F. In a mixing bowl, beat cream cheese, sugar and vanilla extract, until it gets soft. Add eggs one by one and beat well. Spread 1 cup of the batter at the bottom of the crust and keep it aside. To the balance batter, add cinnamon, pumpkin, cloves and nutmeg and stir it thoroughly. Spread this mixture in the crust over the already spread layer of batter. Bake for forty minutes, the center should be a little wobbly. Allow the cake to cool gradually and refrigerate for a minimum of three hours. Serve with whipped topping.
Nutritional information – 427 calories, Cholesterol – 115mg, dietary fiber – 0.8g, total carbohydrates – 35.6g, total fat – 29g, sodium – 353mg, protein – 7.2g
No bake Cheesecake recipe
Cream cheese softened
White sugar 1 cup
Apple pie filling 1 can
Frozen whipped topping 2 cups, thawed
Vanilla extract 1 tsp
Prepared graham cracker crust 1 (9 inch)
Blend the cream cheese, vanilla extract, and sugar until it turns into a soft mixture. Fill the mixture in the pie crust. Top with apple pie topping. Refrigerate for two hours before serving.
Nutritional information – 372 calories, Cholesterol – 41mg, dietary fiber – 0.8g, total carbohydrates – 45g, total fat – 20.6g, sodium – 236mg, protein – 3.8g
Chill and creamy cheesecake
Graham cracker crumbs 1 cup
Cold water 1/4 cup
Margarine 1/4 cup melted
Cream cheese 8 ounces, softened
Sugar 1/2 cup
Milk 3/4 cup
Unflavored gelatin 1 each
Lemon Juice 1/4 cup
Shipping Cream cup, whipped
Mix crumbs, margarine and sugar and place it in the bottom of a 9 inch spring shaped pan. Allow the gelatin to soften in warm water, keep stirring until it melts well. Blend the cream cheese and sugar in an electric blender. Chill the mixture until it gets thick and add the whipped cream. Spread this over the crust and chill it until it gets rigid. Top with strawberries before serving.