Velvety Smooth Japanese Cheesecake
If not, skip this post altogether.
My hubby and daughter love cheese and since Father’s day is around the corner, we have a reason to celebrate. And we need a cake! Actually, we need no reason to bake a cake but having a purpose makes baking more meaningful, no?
I’ve seen so many recipes on Japanese Cheesecake that promise a soft and fluffy texture but I’m not sure which to try. So I filtered a handful that looked intriguing, adjusted the ingredient portion based on my gut feelings (not scientific, I know, but I’m a cancerian), and with a stroke of luck, I present to you my virgin Velvety Smooth Japanese Cheesecake.
Click on image for a printable A4 sized recipe
To be honest, I’m not a big fan of cheese cake. In fact, this is my first time baking and eating one. But my hubby and daughter like it, and that’s all that matters. They like the velvety smooth, creamy and fluffy texture. Besides, my cheesecake isn’t too sweet, so it’s ok if Sonia wants a second serving.
TIPS & TRICKS: Read this before you bake
Which brand of cheese did you use
I go for the most popular brand – Philadelphia Cream Cheese. It had worked for many avid bakers so I took their recommendation. I always do my research before baking because ‘why go through the same heartaches, learn from their mistake, don’t make the same ones’. (wink)
What type of eggs you use
I’m not an egg professional. I can’t tell the difference between corn egg, carrot egg, omega egg, cholesterol free egg and what not, but from my previous experience with baking a Pandan Cake, I learn that using eggs of different sizes will affect the outcome of you cake. For this recipe, I used 55g eggs.
What kind of cake pan to use
The recipe asked for an 8-inch one-piece cake pan but I only had a 9-inch springform cake pan, so I made do with it. But, really, save yourself the trouble and go buy the right cake pan. The result of using the wrong type of cake pan – (1) a too shallow cake, not tall enough, and (2) it leaked and allowed water to seep into the cake. Only the top 2/3 of my cake was nice and fluffy. I had to cut the bottom 1/3 of the cake away because it was a little damp. If you really have to use a springform cake pan, remember to wrap a double layer aluminium foil around your pan to prevent water from seeping in.
How to prevent the surface of the cheesecake from peeling and cracking
As you might have already noticed, the surface of my cheesecake wasn’t all smooth but thankfully there wasn’t any crack. So what went wrong? It was smooth when I took it out of the oven, de-pan and place it on the rack. But when I tried transferring the cheesecake into my cake container after the cake has cooled down, the ‘skin’ sticked on to the baking paper I used to transfer the cake. After much research, I realised that once the cake cools, the ‘skin’ becomes damp and sticks to whatever you are using to de-pan or transfer the cake. So do whatever you need to do when the cake is still warm.
Why didn’t my cheesecake crack?
Because I used a light coloured cake pan. A dark coloured pans will absorb heat easily and cause the sides of the cake to bake faster than the middle, thus resulting in a cracked cake. Also, try to avoid opening the oven door while the cheesecake is baking inside. Big cracks are often caused by drafts and temperature changes. Once the cheesecake is done in the oven, simply turn the over off and leave the oven door ajar for 10 minutes before removing. A sudden change in temperature will often cause cracking.
What do you mean by water-bathing the cake
It means that you have to use 2 pans for your cheesecake. Place the 8-inch cake pan that holds the cheesecake into a larger pan with hot water inside. Bake it with both pans, so the water on the second pan heats up to help cook the other. This method is used because the hot water steam will ensure even baking, thus reduce the likelihood of a cracked top.
When baking is done, remove the inner pan and leave the larger pan with water in the oven until it cools down completed. It is easier to move a pan that isn’t filled with near boiling water around the kitchen.