The secret to velvety cheesecake is knowing how to handle the batter. Gently folding the beaten eggs into the cheesecake batter will give you an even, smooth, creamy texture.
A few other keys to success:
- Spring form pan: ideal for the soft texture of traditional cheesecake – removing a cheesecake from any other pan is nearly impossible.
- Overbeating incorporates too much air, which produces a cheesecake that puffs in the oven, then falls and cracks as it cools. Overbaking produces cracks in the top of a cheesecake and a texture that becomes dry and crumbly where the filling meets the crust.
- Water Bath method: This will help your cheesecake bake slowly and evenly. The water bath ensures the outer edge of the cake won’t bake faster than the center. Place your curst-lined springform pan on a double layer of heavy-duty foil. Bring edges of foil up and mold around sides of pan to form a watertight seal. Place pan into a roasting pan and after adding the cheesecake filling, pour enough boiling water into the roasting pan to reach halfway up the sides of the springform pan. Bake for 60 minutes. Turn off oven, let stand in over for 60 minutes. Remove from water bath, cool as directed.
- Pressing matters: Press the crust into the pan and 1 ½ inches up the sides. Use your hand or the bottom of a measuring cup.
- Room temperature ingredients: Make sure the cream cheese is softened before incorporating with the sugar. This helps create a silky smooth batter. Cold cream cheese will give you chunks in your batter.
- Fold in beaten eggs: Don’t overbeat the eggs or it will incorporate too much air.
- Give it a shake: Check you cheesecake for doneness by giving the pan a gently shake. A perfectly cooked cheesecake will still have a shaky, jellylike center, giving the illusion that it’s not done baking. Chilling the cheesecake will set the center and help develop the lush texture.
- Releasing the cake: Run a knife around the edge of the cheesecake before unclipping the sides of the springform pan. Cool the cheesecake completely on a wire baking rack before chilling for at least 4 hours. It will solidify in the fridge.