Monday, 10 November 2014

The Cheesecake Bible

The Cheesecake Bible
Includes 200 recipes
by George Geary
Softcover, 320 pages

Cheesecake! My favourite kind of cake. Especially homemade cheesecake. Especially light and fluffy homemade cheesecake. And dense and fruity cheesecake. And breakfast cheesecake...

(nota bene: all cheesecake is breakfast cheesecake if you eat it in the morning. Or after 4am, by the light of the refrigerator)

This book has every kind of cheesecake recipe you could hope to find, with a chapter on tools, equipment, ingredients and lessons on how to make perfect cheesecakes.

The recipe chapters include: 

  • A World of Cheesecakes 
  • Chocolate Cheesecakes
  • Fresh Fruit Cheesecakes
  • Citrus Cheesecakes
  • Nut Cheesecakes
  • No-Bake Cheesecakes
  • Small Cheesecakes and Bars
  • Cheese Pies
  • Savory Cheesecakes
  • Holiday and Celebration Cheesecakes
  • Toppings and Sauces


Among the easy-to-follow recipes:

  •     Blue ribbon cheesecake, New York style cheesecake, Italian ricotta cheesecake
  •     Banana split cheesecake, caramel apple cheesecake, fresh cherry cheesecake
  •     Black forest cheesecake, German chocolate cheesecake, white chocolate velvet cheesecake
  •     Citrus bliss cheesecake, mandarin orange cheesecake, south of France lemon cheesecake
  •     Butter toffee peanut cheesecake, Kentucky bourbon cheesecake, pecan praline cheesecake
  •     Chocolate peanut butter cheese bars, two-bite cheesecakes, blueberry cheese pie
  •     Cheddar chili cheesecake, goat cheese and walnut cheesecake, savory herb cheesecake.

Now go make some perfect and delicious cheesecakes!

Lemon Soufflé Cheesecake
While dining in Los Angeles at Ciudad, I had a wonderful cheesecake that was so light and airy, I had to create my own version in homage to Chefs Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger.

•    Preheat oven to 325°F (160°C)
•    9-inch (23 cm) cheesecake pan, ungreased, or springform pan with 3-inch (7.5 cm) sides, greased

Crust
11⁄2 cups    butter cookie crumbs    375 mL
1⁄4 cup    unsalted butter, melted    50 mL

Filling
4    packages (each 8 oz/250 g) cream cheese,     4
    softened
1⁄2 cup    sour cream    125 mL
11⁄2 cups    granulated sugar    375 mL
4    egg yolks    4
1 tbsp    grated lemon zest    15 mL
3 tbsp    freshly squeezed lemon juice    45 mL
11⁄2 tsp    vanilla extract    7 mL
6    egg whites    6
1⁄4 tsp    cream of tartar    1 mL

Decoration
1⁄4 cup    confectioner’s (icing) sugar    50 mL

1.    Crust: In a bowl, combine cookie crumbs and butter.
Press into bottom of cheesecake pan and freeze.

2.    Filling: In a mixer bowl fitted with paddle attachment,
beat cream cheese, sour cream and sugar on medium-high speed until very smooth, for 3 minutes. Add egg yolks, one at a time, beating after each addition. Stir in lemon zest, lemon juice and vanilla. Set aside.

3.    In a clean mixer bowl fitted with whip attachment, whip egg whites and cream of tartar on low speed for 1 minute. Increase speed to medium-high and whip until stiff but not dry peaks form. Fold into cream cheese mixture carefully so as not to deflate the mixture.

4.    Pour over frozen crust, smoothing out to sides of pan. Bake in preheated oven until top is light brown and center has a slight jiggle to it, 45 to 55 minutes. Let cool in pan on a wire rack for 2 hours. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 6 hours before decorating or serving.

5.    Decoration: Using a sugar dredger or flour sifter, dust top of cake with confectioner’s sugar.

Serves 10 to 12



Courtesy of The Cheesecake Bible by George Geary 2014 © www.robertrose.ca Reprinted with publisher permission. Available where books are sold.



Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheese Bars
I created this recipe for one of my oldest students, Catherine, who was 95 when she passed away. She never stopped learning, and I think of her every time I make these.

•    Preheat oven to 325°F (160°C)
•    13- by 9-inch (3 L) metal baking pan, lined with foil

Crust
21⁄2 cups    peanut butter sandwich cookie crumbs    625 mL
1⁄2 cup    all-purpose flour    125 mL
1⁄2 cup    unsalted butter, melted    125 mL

Filling
4    packages (each 8 oz/250 g) cream cheese,     4
    softened
11⁄4 cups    granulated sugar    300 mL
4    eggs    4
8 oz    bittersweet chocolate, melted (see page 63     250 g
    and tip, at left) and cooled
1 cup    creamy peanut butter    250 mL
3 tbsp    freshly squeezed lemon juice    45 mL
1 tsp    vanilla extract    5 mL
2 cups    semisweet chocolate chunks    500 mL

Topping
1 cup    sour cream    250 mL
1⁄2 cup    granulated sugar    125 mL
1⁄3 cup    creamy peanut butter    75 mL
1 tbsp    freshly squeezed lemon juice    15 mL
1 tsp    vanilla extract    5 mL
1⁄2 cup    semisweet chocolate chunks    125 mL

1.    Crust: In a bowl, combine cookie crumbs, flour and butter. Press into bottom of prepared pan and freeze.

2.    Filling: In a mixer bowl fitted with paddle attachment, beat cream cheese and sugar on medium-high speed
until very smooth, for 3 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition. With the mixer running, pour in melted chocolate in a steady stream. Mix in peanut butter, lemon juice and vanilla. Fold in chocolate chunks by hand.

3.    Pour over frozen crust, smoothing out to sides of pan. Bake in preheated oven until top is light brown and center has a slight jiggle to it, 35 to 45 minutes. Let cool on the counter for 10 minutes (do not turn the oven off). The cake will sink slightly.

4.    Topping: In a bowl, combine sour cream, sugar, peanut butter, lemon juice and vanilla. Pour into center of cooled cake and spread out to edges. Sprinkle with chocolate chunks. Bake for 5 minutes more. Let cool in pan on a wire rack for 2 hours. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 6 hours before cutting into bars.

Makes 10 to 12 bars



Courtesy of The Cheesecake Bible by George Geary 2014 © www.robertrose.ca Reprinted with publisher permission. Available where books are sold.



Carrot Cake Cheesecake
Your guests will ask if it’s a cheesecake or a carrot cake. It’s the best of both worlds.

•    Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C)
•    9-inch (23 cm) cheesecake pan or springform pan with 3-inch (7.5 cm) sides, sprayed with nonstick spray, outside of pan wrapped with foil

Cheesecake Batter
2    packages (each 8 oz/250 g) cream cheese,     2
   softened
3⁄4 cup    granulated sugar    175 mL
1 tbsp    all-purpose flour    15 mL
2    eggs    2
1 tsp    vanilla extract    5 mL
1 tsp    ground cinnamon    5 mL

Carrot Cake Batter
11⁄4 cups    all-purpose flour    300 mL
11⁄4 tsp    baking soda    6 mL
1⁄4 tsp    ground cinnamon    1 mL
1⁄4 tsp    salt    1 mL
1⁄8 tsp    freshly grated nutmeg    0.5 mL
11⁄4 cups    granulated sugar    300 mL
2    eggs    2
1⁄3 cup    vegetable oil    75 mL
1 tsp    vanilla extract    5 mL
1⁄2 cup    well-drained crushed pineapple     125 mL
    (about one 8-oz/227 mL can)
1⁄2 cup    flaked sweetened coconut    125 mL
1⁄2 cup    pecans, toasted (see tip, at left)     125 mL
    and chopped
1 cup    shredded carrots    250 mL

Icing
2 oz    cream cheese, softened    60 g
1 tbsp    unsalted butter, softened    15 mL
13⁄4 cups    confectioner’s (icing) sugar    425 mL
1⁄2 tsp    vanilla extract    2 mL

1.    Cheesecake batter: In a mixer bowl fitted with paddle attachment, beat cream cheese, sugar and flour on medium-high speed until very smooth, for 3 minutes.
Add eggs one at a time, beating after each addition. Stir in vanilla and cinnamon. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.

2.    Carrot cake batter: In a bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, salt, and nutmeg. In a mixer
bowl fitted with paddle attachment, combine sugar, eggs, oil and vanilla until well blended, for 2 minutes. Add pineapple, coconut and pecans; mix for 1 minute. Gradually stir in flour mixture. Stir in carrots.

3.    Divide carrot cake batter in half and smooth half the batter over bottom of prepared pan. Bake in preheated oven just until cake is light brown and just set, 18 to 22 minutes (it will not be fully cooked).

4.    Gently drop cheesecake batter by large spoonfuls over carrot cake. Top with large spoonfuls of remaining carrot cake batter, allowing some of the cheesecake batter to show through. Bake in preheated oven until a tester inserted in the top layer of carrot cake comes out clean, 55 to 60 minutes. Let cool in pan on a wire rack for 2 hours. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 6 hours before icing or serving.

5.    Icing: In a mixer bowl fitted with paddle attachment, beat cream cheese and butter on medium speed until fluffy, about 4 minutes. Add sugar and vanilla; beat until creamy and light, about 3 minutes. Pipe large rosettes around top of cake.

Serves 10 to 12



Courtesy of The Cheesecake Bible by George Geary 2014 © www.robertrose.ca Reprinted with publisher permission. Available where books are sold.