National Cheesecake Day

I’m not sure anymore which came first- the craving or finding out that today is National Cheesecake Day.  Suddenly I got the will to detach myself from Roku and make one to celebrate the special occasion.  It has to be quick and easy but delishy.  Puffed and airy and soft like cotton; Japanese cheesecake, yeah?  And it’s been ages since I last made one.  It’s time to reconnect!   Too bad I have but enough ingredients for my smallest spring form pan- I really wish I have enough for the biggest one but it will take longer to bake and I can't afford that luxury at this time.
Recipe adapted from The Cookbook Chronicles

·         2 pkg cream cheese
·         3 tsbp unsalted butter
·         3 extra large egg yolks
·         1 tbsp + 1 tsp sugar
·         scant tbsp cornstarch
·         2/3 cup whole milk
·         3 extra large egg whites
·         1/3 cup sugar
·         Use an 18 cm (7 in) cake pan with a fixed bottom

Cut a strip of parchment that is 3 cm higher than the height of the cake pan. Fold 1.5 cm along the long edge and cut a notch to the fold line every 2 cm to allow the strip to line the side of the cake pan. Slits should point into the center of the cake pan. You want the strip to be at least 1 cm taller than the cake pan. (Basically, the notches are just so you can build a perfectly round collar around the base of the pan.) Cut a parchment paper round to line the bottom of the cake pan.

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Put the egg whites into the freezer so it just begins to freeze around the edges. Sift the cornstarch.
Wrap the cream cheese in clear wrap and microwave until it becomes soft to the touch. You do not want to heat it up. (I did this in about 15 second intervals.)
In a large bowl, melt the butter over a double boiler. Add the cream cheese and whisk well to combine.
In another bowl, combine the egg yolks and scant tbsp of sugar. Mix in the cornstarch.
Heat the milk so it comes to a boil. Add it to the egg yolks and whisk until it thickens in a double boiler over boiling water. Add this mixture to the cream cheese and combine well.
Add a small amount of the sugar to the egg whites and mix on medium low speed for about 2 minutes. Gradually add the remaining sugar to the egg whites and beat on medium until a soft meringue forms.
Add ¼ of the meringue to the cream cheese mixture and combine. Add the remaining meringue to the cream cheese mixture and fold to combine. Fill the cake pan and smooth the top.
Put the cake pan in a roasting pan and add boiling water so it comes up 1-1.5 cm up the cake pan. Bake for 15 minutes and then lower the temperature to 320°F and continue to bake for 25 minutes until the top turns slightly golden. Turn off the oven and leave the cake pan for another 40 minutes to an hour. 

I used a spring form pan which I placed on another one which is bigger and lined with aluminum foil so the water will not seep in.
I added a teaspoon of pure lemon extract to the egg whites to give it a little pop

Not a lot of pictures because I was losing the good natural lighting.  But I will definitely update this tomorrow when my knife touches the cake finally.  Right now it’s chilling in the fridge.  It’s best eaten the next day anyway.  I hope all of you had your share of cheesecake today.  I will surely enjoy mine tomorrow.


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