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. My recipe doesn’t fuss over beating things separately and folding them together. Nor does it fuss over the cheese: I use the soft cheese bought in tubs. These are light soft cheese; full fat soft cheese and marscapone. Ricotta is one I might try but the recipe below is already perfect. These wet cheeses cost similarly eg £5 – £6 a kilo. You want I pay more?

Ingredients:

  • 8 crushed digestive biscuits £0.40. You’ll have a soft, imperceptible base if you don’t add melted butter to the crumbs. The butter holds the base together on its way to a plate but that may not matter. You might use slices of sponge cake instead of biscuit
  • 150g (caster) sugar cost £0.25. (If you have success with ‘Stevia’ please add a comment to say how that went)
  • 3 regular eggs (£0.75)
  • 675 g soft cream cheese (£5 for 800g 4 tubs of Tesco full fat soft cheese). I have used similar amounts of cream cheeses such as curd cheese, mascarpone and ricotta. I detect not a blind bit of difference by doing so.
  • 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 £0.80

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.

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

*There’s still a bakery at Stamford Hill, London which when I lived there in 1980, was my benchmark of good cheesecake. In the comments below you’ll find praise for Rinkoffs a bakery in Stepney. Rinkoffs used to be in Old Montague Street, Whitechapel which was pretty much the heart of the culture.

Method:

  1. Warm the oven to 180°C – 185°C
  2. Generously grease the inside of a loose-bottom 9 inch (23cm) 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 is a bit hard and 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. Blend the two lots together and spread the mixture on the biscuit base
  3. Bake for 40 – 50 minutes on a middle shelf at 180° – 185°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 getting brown turn the heat down (to say 170°C) 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 it more solid.
  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 and eat a slice first and then ease the cake from the base.

why not cut it differently?

May I offer this alternative way to cut a cake – I got the idea from wedding cake cutting. You’ll like it or you won’t.

alternative to cutting cake in arcs

19 Responses

  1. Simon Abrahams says:

    Great cheesecake – great texture- great taste- have many orders …….Unfortunately they are not paying orders…..have a nice day. Simon.

  2. Georgia says:

    I can’t wait to try this. I made a traditional Jewish cheesecake when I was at school and it was the best. I don’t know where my mum got the recipe from for it but I’m definitely going to try this. Just bought the ingredients 😋😋😋😝

  3. Natalie says:

    Looking forward to trying this. Can you freeze it in pieces?

    • roger says:

      Hi! The general advice I found is that freezing works for fatty cheesecakes which this is. Against better advice I foil-wrap and freeze all sorts of sliced cake, cheesecake and even doughnuts – they don’t improve but yunno, they’re often OK.

  4. penelope harris says:

    I have a fan oven what temp should I use

  5. Georgina says:

    My Mum always brought cheesecake home from that shop in Stamford Hill, a delicious memory … Im going to try this recipe .. fingers crossed x

  6. Jude says:

    Bought a fabulous puce and Rinkoffs in Jubilee St.
    If they can’t make it- nobody can!
    Will give recipe a go.
    Judith x

    • roger says:

      You’re right Jude. Thank you for this so useful tip off about Rinkoffs. The recipe more matches my recall than anything bought in a supermarket.

      We lived in Old Montague Steet near the original Rinkoffs bakery – well that’s my claim to authenticity.

      Best
      rogerf

  7. P.auline says:

    just made your cheesecake recipe, absolutely delish , my oven is quite fierce so can i bake it on 160in my fan oven as after the 45minutes i left it in the oven till it was cool and by that time it was to brown.Can you please advice me what i should do.Thank you.Pauline

  8. PAULINE says:

    Could you please tell me if you use large or medium eggs for your cheesecake recipe

    • roger says:

      Medium eggs. Large eggs are just a teaspoon of difference.

      Large egg 57 grams
      Medium egg 50 grams
      Small egg 43 grams

  9. pauline says:

    thanks Pauline

  10. Judith Edwards says:

    Fab recipe and totally endorse Rinkoffs too. If they can’t make it who can?

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