Cheesecake – Jewish style

Some cheesecakes are set with gelatin and have smooth, jelly-like texture. This cheesecake is baked and sets due to its whipped egg. When chilled it has an appealing dry, soft, crumbly texture. I use the soft cheese bought in tubs. These were light soft cheese; full fat soft cheese and marscapone. Ricotta is one to try but the recipe below is already perfect. These wet cheeses cost similarly eg £5 – £6 a kilo.

Ingredients:

  • 8 crushed digestive biscuits £0.40. You’ll have a soft, imperceptible base if you don’t add melted butter to the crumbs – butter holds the base together on its way to a plate but that may not matter.
  • 150g (caster) sugar cost £0.25
  • 3 eggs (£0.75)
  • 675 g soft cream cheese (£4 for 800g 4 tubs of Tesco Full fat soft cheese)
  • 3 tablespoons of plain flour £0.01
  • Pinch of salt + 1 teaspoon lemon juice + 1 teaspoon vanilla extract £0.25
  • 150ml double cream £0.60
  • Cooking cost £0.50
  • You can use slices of sponge cake instead of biscuit
  • You can use similar amounts of cream cheeses such as curd cheese, mascarpone and ricotta. I detect not a blind bit of difference by doing so.

Costs:

For comparison with bought cheesecake this recipe cost is £6.70 or 16 slices at £0.42p. However this style of cheesecake is rarely found. Its weight is 1140g making a cost of £6.10 a kilo. That price is from 2022 when fillet steak hit £35 a kilo.

Calorie costs? Let’s not be ridiculous, go for a long walk.

Method:

  1. Warm the oven to 185 degrees C
  2. Generously grease the inside of a loose-bottom 9 inch spring-base cake tin. Layer the bottom with the biscuit crumbs and press down with a smaller tin. Adding melted butter to the crumbs gives a base that holds together.
  3. Beat together the eggs and sugar until creamy (pic)
  1. Beat together the cheese, flour, salt, vanilla, lemon juice and cream in a larger bowl (pic)
  2. Beat the two lots together and spread the mixture on the biscuit base
  3. Bake for 40 – 50 minutes on the middle shelf at 185 degrees C. The cake should rise to the top of the tin and go brown on top. If there’s too much wobble in the centre when it’s already brown turn the heat down (to say 170) and cook it more.
  4. Turn off the heat and leave the cake in the oven to cool. It will flatten to half its height. Although it’s delicious warm, place in the fridge for 1-2 hours to get more texture.
  5. Run a knife round the inside of the tin and release the cheesecake from the side. As my tin base has a lip I remove a slice to help separate the cake from the base.
Use the picture as a guide to cooking time.

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