The World’s Best Cheesecake
4 packages cream cheese
1/2 cup sour cream
1 can sweetened condensed milk
Juice of 1 lemon
1 Tbsp. vanilla
12 gingersnaps or graham crackers, crushed into crumbs
6 cups of crushed nuts (almonds, pecans, walnuts, or whatever you like)
1 stick butter, melted
Special Equipment: Springform pan, lined with tinfoil.
1) Preheat your oven to 350 F and combine 1 cup of sugar with the crushed nuts and cookies. Mix well.
2) Drizzle the butter over the crumbs and mix well until all the crumbs are moistened and become a thick sort of paste. You may not use all of the butter – you want it to be just a bit moist, not sopping wet.
3) Pat the crumbs into an even layer in your tinfoiled springform pan. Set aside.
4) In a large bowl, combine your cream cheese,
sweetened condensed milk,
vanilla, lemon juice,
the rest of the sugar,
and sour cream.Mix until all are roughly combined (There will be some cream cheese lumps, but dont’ worry about that).
5) Add the eggs to the mixture.
6) Mix with your hand mixer or stand mixer for at least 7 minutes or until the mixture has increased in volume by about 1/3 (yes, Christina Tosi, you have convinced me that a prolonged mixing time really makes an outstanding cake).
7) Pour the cheesecake batter into the crust. Take a quick lick of the spatula. You won’t get salmonella.
8) Place the cake on a sheet pan with a lip and put it in the oven. Pour water into the sheet pan to create a water bath. Cook the cheesecake for about 45 minutes, or until the outside is firm but the center is still somewhat jiggly. If the cheesecake starts to become golden around the edges, take it out at once.
You are going to love this cake – I bet my blog’s credibility on it. It isn’t one of those fluffy, sugary, preservative laden cakes. This is dense – like a glorious brick in your stomach. The first taste is of cream and pure, clean dairy. Then there is the sweet and gingery crunch of the crust – like a buttery, nutty graham cracker. Then there is the gentle tang of the lemon and sour cream, the aromatic, floral vanilla and the sweetness of the sugar. Pushing your knife through this is like running your fingers through wet sand. It is slow, it is sensual, it gives you some resistance. And it’s so damn satisfying.