Cheesecake …Yum Yum …..let me paint a picture for you ..…..imagine a spoon with Rich, creamy bite of white delight, with just the right amount of sweetness to satisfy your sweet tooth and a hint of freshness of lemon ….
Well well I know its sounds delicious
I always thought Cheesecake was some American or may Italian dessert, but did you know its from “Greece”.
The Wikipedia says “An ancient form of cheesecake may have been a popular dish in ancient Greece even prior to Romans’ adoption of it with the conquest of Greece”…..Really
I have always njoyed my trips to the famous chain of restaurant “The Cheesecake Factory”, did the name ring a bell …..Ohh yes, Penny’s character from the TV show Big Bang Theory, worked at Cheesecake Factory.
The food is good at Cheesecake Factory but the Cheesecakes are drool worthy (of course they have to be , the name of the restaurant is Cheesecake Factory 😎
So that’s how I was introduced to amazing world Cheesecakes, that leaves you craving for more and more …. and a little more
Cheesecakes are simple to assemble but can be tricky when it comes to baking it …I have had my share of failures. Every time I make, I learn something new.
I started baking these in the mini version and have tried couple of flavors (Strawberry, Raspberry, Blueberry and even Chocolate) and its just very recently that I tried a full sized one ……..The first one cracked badly but I could save it with the toppings (pictures are available on Instagram )
Since then its better …I have made variations in recipe and the main thing I learnt is baking the cheesecake in waterbath(will explain this further in the blog) .
Cheesecakes as mentioned doesn’t need too much time in preparation, but the baking and cooing process post that is long.So patience is the key when baking the cheesecake …
Also the cakes tastes better the next day ….so plan and make it atleast a dry prior to your celebration/party/event
Generally there is a base/crust which is made of Graham Crackers, Butter and little sugar and then a cream cheese filling …But you can even make one without it. With crust gone , the cake is 100% gluten free.
Also, the options in terms of flavors are endless, you can add whipped cream while serving, fresh fruits, Choco chips etc.
Today I wanted to share the Crustless Raspberry Cheesecake, this rich and decadent cake can be a perfect make ahead for your romantic Valentine’s day dessert … I will leave the details for the crust too in case you want to add that for some crunch …
One more thing I wanted to mention is the baking pan and the method to bake any cheesecake.
Baking Pan : You will need a Springform Baking pan for this so that you can easily remove the cake from the pan. (a round cake pan with a removable bottom that is held in place by a sprung collar forming the sides.)
Water bath : Cheesecake needs to be baked in water bath to avoid cracks and evenly cooking . The cake pan will be covered with foil from bottom and once the cheesecake batter is poured, this foil covered pan will be placed in another deep dish with hot water in it and finally the complete setup of two pans is put into the oven for baking .
Lets get into the recipe
- 750 grams of Full Fat Cream cheese (At room temperature See note)
- 4 eggs (at room temperature)
- 1/2 Cup + 2 Tablespoon of granulated White Sugar(See notes)
- 1/2 Cup Sour Cream (at room Temperature and preferred Full Fat)
- 1 Tablespoon Vanilla extract
- 1 Tablespoon Lime/Lemon Juice
- 1 Cup Fresh Raspberries (see notes)
- 1 Tablespoon Lime Juice
- 2 Table Spoon Granulated White Sugar
- Half Tablespoon Gelatin
- In case you are interested in making a cheesecake with crust , see my notes for the details of crust.
- Preheat the oven at 350 degree Fahrenheit or 176 degree Celsius
- In a large bowl, add the three blocks or 750 grams of full fat cream cheese. I used the Great Value brand from Walmart for this cake as it was handy in my kitchen, but Philadelphia brand's cream cheese is preferred.
- Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer , mix the cream cheese untill smooth.
- To the mixture add the sugar and continue mixing.
- Add one egg at a time and continue mixing.
- Once all four eggs are beaten into cream cheese and sugar mix, add the sour cream , vanilla extract and lemon juice and continue mixing for 1-2 mins .
- We do not need to beat the mixture for too long, as cream cheese is quite dense as compared to other cakes
- Let this rest for 5 mins
- Layer the Springform pan (I used 9inch pan) bottom with foil ,such that once this pan is put into the waterbath the water does not seeps into the pan and spoil the cream cheese filling. You can do two layers just to be sure
- Grease the inside of the SpingForm pan with cooking oil or spray or butter generously. You can even place a round parchment paper at the inner bottom of the pan.
- Pour in the Cream Cheese filling into the pan
- Place this Springform pan with filling into the second baking tray or dish (larger in size than out springform pan).
- Add hot water to the outer pan, the water level should reach to half the height of the Springform pan .
- Place the above assembly ,into the pre-heated oven at 350 Degree Fahrenheit for 30 mins .
- After the first 30 mins at 350 degree, reduce the heat to 200 - 225 degree Fahrenheit and bake the cake further for 1 hr to 1.5 hrs .(Mine took ~ 1hr 20 mins)
- To know is the cake is completely cooked , check if the cake looks set and firm, but the center is still a wet and little wobbly/shaky once pan is shaken slightly.
- When done , take the pan out and gently run a knife around the inside edge of the Springform pan ,this prevents the cheesecake to stick to the sides of the Pan
- Let the cake cool completely at room temperature .
- While the cake is cooling , prepare your Raspberry sauce, by adding the raspberries to the pan over medium low flame , add the sugar and Lime Juice and half cup of water.
- Let its simmer for 1-2 mins and switch off the flame.
- Strain this mix to remove seeds
- Add the gelatin mix (follow the instructions available on the gelatin packet you are using) . This step is only to have a thick sauce that will set on top of the cake. Skip this ,if you are okay with a runny sauce or would be pouring the sauce only at the time of serving
- Once the Cheesecake is cooled completely pour the Raspberry sauce on to the cheesecake and spread it evenly .
- Put the cake into the fridge and allow it to chill for several hours
- Once ready, serve it with fresh fruits, whipped cream , or some more raspberry sauce.
- 1) Use full fat cream cheese as that will allow the cake to bind and set together
- 2) Fresh or Frozen Raspberries can be used for sauce
- 3) You can even make the similar sauce with other fruits like strawberries and blueberries
- 4) Make sure to use the cream cheese , eggs and sour cream at room temperature . This will help preventing the cheesecake to crack while baking
- 5) If you don't have granulated while sugar , grind the coarse sugar into fine powder in a mixer/blender/food processor.
- 6) Sugar Free Options: You can use an equivalent amount of sweeter instead of sugar , if you want to make this low in carbs . I have tried with Swerve brand and Erythritol, Swerve works better in my opinion.
- 7) For Crust : if interested in making a crust , grind around 1 and 1/2 cup of graham crackers and put this into a large bowl , add 1/4 cup of granulated sugar and half a cup of melted butter to it. Mix this together and add this to the grease springform pan and with help of hands spread and press this all over the base of the pan and also on the sides (1 inch high) . Cover the pan and place it in the refrigerator for around 30 mins or the time it takes you to prepare the filling .
- 8) I find the cake tastes better the next day or even later .
- 9) Remove the cake from refrigerator 15 mins before serving .
- 10) The Cake can be stored in the refrigerator for upto a week , if stored in an airtight container.
WaterBath for baking
Raspberry Sauce in the making
The Gelatin I used for the sauce