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Saturday, March 22, 2014

The Ultimate Cheesecake


McCall's Cooking School, circa 1975?

I'm going through old recipe files. This one has been haunting me since I pulled it out a few weeks ago.

Many years ago I think I made it twice before I found a recipe I liked better for the filling but I continued to use the Lindy's version for the crust. I have never liked a graham cracker crust for cheesecake. Who's idea was that I'd like to know.

The recipe I use for the filling is one that the Family Circle test kitchen called "Our Finest Cheesecake" and is attributed to John Clancy, author of "John Clancy's Baking Book". I like it because the cake is lighter and drier than most.

1.5 lb. cream cheese, room temperature
1-1/4 cups sugar (or less)

1/4 tsp. salt
6 eggs, separated, room temperature
1 pint sour cream
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
Grated rind of 1 lemon 

Juice of 1/2 lemon
 

With electric mixer on low speed or with a wooden spoon, beat cream cheese in a large bowl until soft. Gradually beat in sugar until light and fluffy. 

Beat in egg yolks, one at a time, until well blended. Stir in sour cream, flour, vanilla, lemon rind, lemon juice and salt until smooth. 

Beat egg whites until they hold stiff peaks. Fold whites into the cheese mixture, soufflĂ©-fashion, until well blended. Pour into prepared pan. 

Bake in moderate oven (350 degrees F) 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until top is golden; turn off oven heat and allow cake to cool in oven for 1 hour and then remove it from oven to cool on a wire rack at room temperature.

Chill to ripen overnight before serving. Dust with powdered sugar if desired just before cutting.

There's no getting around it. I'm going to make a cheesecake.