Founded by the late Daniel Rogov, welcoming foodies to discuss the dining scenes in Israel and abroad, along with all things related to kosher food.

Great easy cheescake.

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lewis.pasco

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Great easy cheescake.

by lewis.pasco » Thu Nov 13, 2014 5:02 pm

I've played with various cheescake recipes over the past 40 years and can't say that this or that recipe is "THE BEST." But this one is really good, and really easy.

The crumb crust. I change this around all the time, first and foremost because one can't find graham crackers, or zweiback (zweibach?) type crackers in Israel at all, and either of those were my standard for the crumbs of crumb crust for years when living in the US. What I have discovered is that
1) Any crumb crust recipe is significantly improved, IMO, by subbing ground nuts for 1/3 by volume of the quantity of cracker crumbs. I tend to prefer walnuts, lightly toasted beforehand, but almonds or hazelnuts work equally well.
2) You can grind nearly any darn cookie or cracker or even breakfast cereal to make up the other two-thirds of the crumb base. Seriously, cornflakes work. Honey nut Cherios are great as crumbs! The ubiquitous Israeli "bisquitim" work well too, but def need some spicing up in the form of a half teaspoonfull of ground cinnamon added to the crumbs.
3) Adjust the level of sugar you add to the crumb crust based on the sweetness of the crumbs you start with, and personal taste.

I use a Kraft on-line recipe for the proportions for my crumb crust, going typically a hair more generous in the amount of melted buttter I work in.

The cheescake itself: 750 grams of tubbed 5% fat "white cheese" with 250 of %40 fat Mascarpone makes a better cheesecake, IMO, than 4 x 225 gr (8 oz) packages of real cream cheese with %30 fat. It's just as rich, but less fatty. For a more tart toned cheescake, use 500 grams of white cheese, 250 of Moscarpone, and 250 of 9% Labane. That's my personal fave cheese blend, the Labane adding that powerful yogurty-tart kick.

1 cup scant granulated sugar, 2 level tablespoons all purpose white flour, 2 teaspoons of real vanilla extract, 4 whole eggs, and voila that's your batter. The juice of one lemon, and/or the zest as well, can be added along with reducing the vanilla to one teaspoon if you go for the lemon version. I like a grating of fesh nutmeg in it too, but gently.

The batter is made in the food processor or blender by adding all the ingredients at once EXCEPT the eggs. After the initial ingredients are well blended and the eggs, one at a time, each until just incorporated. Pour this batter into the prepared crumb crust and bake in a preheated oven at 150 C for about 30-40 minutes and then at 125 C for about an hour total: watch it for too fast coloring on the top and if it is lower the temp to 125 C sooner. Overall, bake until the center is not quite yet set and then turn the oven off and let it sit in the cooling oven for about 15 mitnutes, then crack the oven door to cool a bit faster and wait another half hour or so before removing it entirely to cool.

I like it best refrigerated until the next day, but some like it tepid.
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