Now I’ve done it. Again. Full stops are taking. over. my. life? My keyboard? My screen. No, that’s “My. Screen.” to you, full stop. Wait, what?
Anyhow, I used the crust recipe from https://www.pinterest.com/pin/331507222553338301/
I used the filling recipe from https://www.pinterest.com/pin/331507222553338283/
for how to know when to turn the oven off, and
gives a very useful suggestion to add the eggs last or almost last. Doing so keeps your cheesecake from rising too much while it is baking.
I also ground up some coriander and added it to the crust, along with some cardamom. I modified the filling recipe thusly: add lemon zest, almond flavoring, and rum flavoring.
Now my goal is to modify this post into a single recipe that I can follow, that streamlines the process, so it doesn’t take me FIVE HOURS next time. Note that this can easily be made gluten-free by omitting the crust, and substituting sorghum flour for the wheat flour.
Makes: 3 cheesecakes in pie tins or 1 cheesecake in a springform pan.
- coriander seeds, whole
- cardamom seeds, whole
- 16 graham crackers / crust
- 1 stick butter / crust
- 4 T wheat flour (or sorghum flour for GF)
- 4 T cornstarch
- 1.5 cups sugar
- 1 T sugar
- 1 lemon
- 1 t vanilla extract
- 1 t almond extract
- 1.5 t rum emulsion
- 2 T milk
- 8 oz. sour cream
- 32 oz. ricotta
- 16 oz. cream cheese
- 4 eggs
Grind coriander and cardamom (I prefer to use a mortar and pestle). Divide into three piles: for the crust, the filling, and a garnish on the top of the filling. You’ll want about 1/4 teaspoon for each crust, 1/4 teaspoon for the filling, and less than 1/4 teaspoon should be enough for the garnish. If using pie tins instead of a springform pan, you’ll need three crust piles, one for each crust.
Crush (blend or use a rolling pin) graham crackers (or oreos or whatever, but note that chocolate graham crackers work better than oreos due to the filling of the oreo cookie interfering with the butter’s ability to make the crumbs congeal). If you plan to blend graham crackers, you may want to crush them in the packages first to avoid air gaps in the blender.
Melt 1 stick of butter per crust. If the butter is thawed, 30 seconds in the microwave should do it; more, and the butter will start splattering. Put one crust pile of coriander and cardamom in the butter. Mix with graham cracker crumbs. Should hold shape when squeezed. Yes, you’ll need the whole stick for one pie-tin worth of crust. Press into pan (3 pie tins or one 9″ spring form round pan). Refrigerate (if doing pie tins, do all three at once).
Mix 4 T flour, 4 T cornstarch, 1.5 cups sugar in a separate bowl. Set aside. We’ll call this the dry goods.
Zest a lemon. Juice about 1/4 to 1/2 of it, for 1 T of lemon juice. In a separate bowl, mix lemon juice, almond extract, rum emulsion (shake well before pouring), vanilla extract, with lemon zest (feel free to omit any of the flavorings, but it won’t be the same; feel free to use all emulsions instead of extracts, or vice-versa). Add one pile of cardamom and coriander and mix. We’ll call this the seasonings liquid.
Turn oven on to 350 °F.
In a large bowl, beat sour cream and ricotta cheese together. Add cream cheese and beat. Add the seasonings liquid and beat. Add the dry goods to the large bowl and beat. Be sure the mixture is mixed thoroughly. In separate bowl, crack eggs; beat lightly (mix with a fork, as if making french toast for yourself). Add milk and mix in 1 T sugar. Be careful not to beat the eggs too much (over-beating the eggs or adding them too early can lead to the batter rising too fast and cracking). Add this sweetened egg mixture to the large bowl and fold it in. If everything else was well-mixed, it should only need folding in.
Place cookie sheet with edges on the bottom rack. Put a small amount of water in the cookie sheet (about half full) to provide more humidity for the cheesecakes while they bake to help them not crack.
Remove pie tins / cake pan from fridge. Pour batter into crust. Sprinkle spice mixture on top of batter. For an extra challenge, you can try putting the cheesecakes into the oven first, and then try to sprinkle the spice mixture in. You only get points for this challenge if you manage to complete it without burning yourself. Use a knife or fork to mix spices in with very top layer of batter. Set timer for 1 hour. Turn oven down to 325 °F. Put pie tins / cake pans in oven. If using pie tins, try to cook all three at the same time. At about 20 minutes, check for uneven distribution of the filling, and rotate any that need it to compensate for an uneven baking surface. If your oven has uneven temperature zones, you may need to swap the positions of the pans after 1/2 hour: rotate them even if they don’t look like they need it; rotate them at 30 minutes, not 45 minutes.
While the cheesecakes are cooking, you can clean up after yourself. Also while they cook, you can make sure there is enough room in the fridge for the pans when they are cool enough to refrigerate.
After 45 minutes of cooking time, check on the cheesecakes. If you used enough water in the cookie sheet, watch out for the steam coming out of the oven. Your face will thank you. (If you didn’t use enough water, the sheet will be dry or almost dry, and you risk cracking the tops.) Look for the 2-2.5 inch border of mostly done and the jiggly center, as mentioned in the short video above. If they are not done enough, try cooking and checking in 5-10 minute increments. When they are done enough, turn off the oven, set a timer for 1 hour. Come back and check in an hour. It should either be done, or it needs to cook or stand in the oven longer. At this point, you’ll need to let the pan(s) cool off before refrigerating the cheesecake(s).