Friday, September 16, 2011

Strawberry Cheesecake

Strawberry Cheesecake
Recipe adapted from Bakin Without Eggs by Rosemarie Emro 
Makes 12 to 16 servings

For the crust:
1 1/2 cups finely crushed graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup butter or margarine, melted
1 tablespoons sugar1 teaspoon cinnamon

For the filling:
1 (8-ounce) package regular cream cheese, room temperature
2 (8-ounce) packages low-fat cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 pint (16 ounces) light sour cream

For the Topping:
1-1/2 cup sliced strawberries
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
1/8 cup water
1/4 cup sugar (more or less to taste)

To prepare crust: In a small bowl, combine graham cracker crumbs, melted butter or margarine, cinnamon, and sugar; blend well. Press into bottom of an ungreased 9-inch springform pan. Put foil around bottom of pan so it does not drip. Set aside.

Preheat oven to 300 degrees.

To prepare filling: In a large bowl, with a handheld electric mixer set on medium speed, beat cream cheese, condensed milk, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, cornstarch, lemon juice, lemon rind (if used), and vanilla. Beat until smooth, approximately 3 minutes. Add sour cream; blend well. Pour into prepared pan.

Bake for 1 hour on center rack. Knife inserted in outer side of cake should come out clean when cake is done. Middle will still be creamy.

Turn off oven and open door; let cake sit in oven for another 2 to 3 hours to cool slowly.

Remove from oven after it is cooled, loosen sides of pan with a knife, and remove sides of pan. Place on a plate and allow to cool completely at room temperature before placing it in refrigerator (so it does not create condensation) covered with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for a couple of hours
before serving.
Variations: For a slightly thicker cheesecake use 4 (8-ounce) bars of light or regular cream cheese and one cup (8 ounces) sour cream instead of 16 ounces of sour cream. Or, for a softer cake, use 3/4 cup sweetened condensed milk and 1/4 cup sugar and 1/3 cup cornstarch. Either way your cheesecake will turn out scrumptious! 

Gently rinse strawberries with cold water and allow them to drain well. Slice and place in a saucepan. In a small bowl, mix the cornstarch, lemon juice and water together and stir until all the cornstarch is dissolved. Add this mixture to the strawberries in the saucepan. Place over medium heat and cook until sauce thickens and is translucent. At the end of the cooking time, add half of the sugar. Taste the sauce, and if desired, add the rest of the sugar. Cook until sugar is dissolved. Allow topping to cool and then serve over the cheesecake.

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