Friday, July 14, 2006

Apparently in a fit of bravado spoken among LOTS of empty glasses at a table overlooking the water last night, I promised to make someone a cheesecake to take back with them to Portland tomorrow morning. She called first thing today to make sure I didn't forget. My head will never be the same after last night! So, with 90 degree temps coming over us today, I shlepped to the store for cheesecake makings. Greg is going off to Bruswick this afternoon to make dinner for a friend, so he pleaded with me to make him one for tonight. My neighbor has been feeling unwell after a bad car accident and so I thought I should make her one for all her family members to nosh on as well.
But rather than make three batches of cheesecake batter and have to purchase a bulk of cheeses, I just got out my trusty springform pans in medium, small and tiny and divided the batter three ways, thus making three people happy with one batch of batter! I love stuff like this!! Its such and easy way to cheer up three people at once.
I put my mom's New York cheesecake recipe up for challenge against all others. Her secret is the blend of cream cheese, ricotta, and sour cream. True New York cheesecake has no crust, but I personally like crust, so I took about a cup and a half of graham cracker crumbs, about 1/4 cup of Splenda and 1/2 stick of melted butter combined and spread on the bottom of three well greased springform pans in medium, small and tiny.

Then, take 1 lb each of softened cream cheese and ricotta and blend together adding 1 1/2 cups of granulated sugar, stirring (I like to hand stir) or beating until combined. Then add 5 eggs, one at a time, beating and blending completely before adding the next egg. 1/4 cup melted cooled butter gets added next and then 3 tablespoons each flour and cornstarch. mix in 2 teaspoons vanilla and then fold in 1 cup sour cream and pour into prepared pans. Cook in a slow (325 degree) oven for 45 minutes and then turn oven off (do not open oven door)and let cheesecake set and dry in the oven for 1-1.5 hours. Cool completely and then chill until firm, best if made a day ahead. **Note if you are going to make one big cheesecake instead, cook for 1 hour and let sit in oven for 2 hours.


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