June 11, 2006

Baked Ricotta + Cream Cheesecake with Strawberries

It's been awhile since I baked a cheesecake. I still have yet to perfect my technique and discover new mixtures and proportions for a recipe I would keep as my personal cheesecake Fail-Proof-Basic recipe. I'm open to new ideas and a friend of mine; Shaun, lead me to this website JoyofCakes.com which provided me with lengthy information about cheesecakes and many useful tips on baking them well. I decided to give the recipe a couple of alterations (we like our cheesecake with a thick cookie base) and tried it out today. Left out the cranberry sauce though....Cranberries send shivers down my spine! sOo SOuR!
Initially; I was aiming for an artistic pink swirl design on top of my cake. I was thinking of filling the center with berries and exposing the pretty corners with swirls of pink and beige. Unfortunately....tips from the website on "how-not-to-crack-the-surface-of-your-cake" did not really work on mine. *tear* My cake CRACKED! *sob* It was a shame....I must have gone wrong somewhere along the lines of removing the cake from the oven too quick or not topping up the bain-marie with enough water. *sigh* I quickly patched up my cake with a couple of strawberries and some homemade jam I whipped up in the microwave.
It guess it still looks okay. The bright side is; we get to eat the cake with delicious fresh berries! Enough with my babbling; here's the recipe!
250g digestive biscuit crumbled
2 tbsp castor sugar
70gs unsalted butter melted
Stir these ingredients together and press the mixture firmly into the base of a springform tin. Refrigerate while you make the filling.
1 1/2 cup soft ricotta cheese
500g Philadelphia cream cheese
1 cup sugar
1 tbsp corn flour
4 large eggs
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Beat cream cheese in a large mixing bowl on high till fluffy. Add in ricotta and sugar and beat on low till smooth (no lumps). Add in one egg at a time, beat well after each addition. Add in corn flour and vanilla. Pour mixture on to the cookie base. Wrap the bottom of the cake time with 2 layers of thick foil paper and place into a larger tin/ bain-marie filled with water until at least 3/4 the height of the cake. Bake in preheated 170 degree oven for 1 hour. The sides of the cake should be set and slightly brown when its done and the middle should still be a little wobbly. Leave to cool in the oven with the oven door open for about 30 minutes before taking the cake out. Loosen sides of the springform tin and remove and decorate when absolutely cooled if you wish. Refrigerate for at least 7-8 hours before serving; overnight preferably.

How did I make the swirls? no secret...
I poured the cheesecake filling into the tin and left about 1/2 cup of filling in the mixing bowl. I dropped in a couple drops of red non-flavoured food colouring and mixed the mixture into a smooth pink colour. I spooned the mixture into the center and slowly swirled the design around the corners with the back of a fork.

Tasting verdict:
The cake had a grain-ny texture, despite my "beat till smooth" and "strain ricotta in sieve" steps...I wouldn't say this combination was a good one. I've baked creamier and smoother cheesecakes with only ricotta / cream cheese.


Anonymous said...

It looks so pretty! Too bad it didn't taste better.

Su-Yin -Décorateur said...

thanks :)...yea..I guess the only person who has a problem with my cake is me...evyerone else says its good...
Might just be my personal love for smooth and luxurious cheesecakes

Anonymous said...

hi. im a fren's fren. jus wanna share sth here. i think that problem with ur cake cracking, it's because 30 mins isnt long enough. i've read before, and usually i do too, that u should leave ur cake in d oven for AT LEAST ONE whole hour to be really sure that it wont crack. and then another 30 mins with the door open, before taking it out of d oven. dont know if it REALLY works, but maybe u can try nx time =) btw, do u mind posting ur better-ricotta/creamcheese-recipes?


Su-Yin -Décorateur said...

hi carrots...thanks for the tip
yea, i'll type up a recipe the next time i bake a cheesecake..
will definately try the tip next time around :)

jellyfungus said...

you have this thing for strawberries i noticed.. yums.. me too!

when are you cooking for me??? i wanna switch places with Amrit :D

Su-Yin -Décorateur said...

haha...Russia's too cold! I dont wanna go there...you come here :)

Anonymous said...

use a food processor rather than a mixer, and lose the flour. If you bake your cheese cake at a lower temp 300 degrees and remove from oven when center is still jiggly (about the size of a half dollar)cheese cake will continue to cook. Works for me. People at work pay me $$$ to make for birthdays.

(Nevada, USA)

Su-Yin -Décorateur said...

Thanks for the tips Katie! Will definately keep that in mind next time around :)

Anonymous said...

i have tried a lot of cheesecake recipes... some good some not as good. here is a great, easy recipe:
1 package cream cheese
1 can sweet condensed milk,
1 egg
15 minutes.
i was a skeptic until i made it.
it is creamy and delicious!