Saturday, April 3, 2010

Strawberry Cheesecake in the Oven

When I read that my friend SeaNymph was baking a cheesecake for Easter-I am thinking I need to bake one too-it is one of Larry's favorites, and I haven't made one in a long while.

I have to make it diabetic and heart friendly as much as possible-although it still is probably not-lol-but better than just following the recipe, and I don't use a recipe anymore that adds sour cream, or whipping cream-that would just too over the top along with all these eggs that go in too.

The store didn't have the no fat cream cheese in stock for some reason, so I bought all 1/3 less fat phily cream cheese. Cut the sugar back a little and used organic sugar. I also use lower fat graham crackers too for the crust. So it all helps a little, without sacrificing all the flavor.

And then I am all organized to make it-and I realized I forgot to take the strawberries out of the freezer.-So I defrost them in the microwave, and drain them as best I can, so hoping they won't make the cake too soggy.

I follow a recipe in the book titled Cheesecake Extraordinaire by Mary Crownover 1994. This was recommended to me by a friend that made cheesecakes alot. I had never made one, something my Mom never made. I follow one called Strawberry Cheesecake, but change the fruit to anything I feel like making or have on hand. This is a paperback book-very nice ideas for flavors of cheesecakes.

Strawberry Cheesecake

crust

1 1/4 cups graham cracker crumbs

3 tablespoons sugar

1/4 cup butter melted

Stir it all up together in a bowl and pat it down in your cheesecake pan to form the crust. set aside

Filling

24 ounces cream cheese-I stick with philly-there is a difference from the generic brands I have found

3/4 cup sugar I have been cutting this back to 1/2 cup

5 teaspoons cornstarch

4 eggs

1 egg yolk-I am lazy and don't want to throw away the white-so just put in 5 eggs-lol

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 teaspoon vanilla-I vary this according to the fruits used-almond, orange

1 1/4 cup fresh sliced strawberries

In a large bowl combine the cream cheese, sugar, and cornstarch. Beat with an electric mixer til very smooth. Add eggs and yolk one at time-beat well after each addition but do not overbeat. Beat in the lemon juice and extracts. Carefully stir in the strawberries. Pour into prepared pan

Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. Lower the temp. to 225 degrees and bake for 1 hour and 10 minutes (Yikes!! I know I shouldn't bake when I don't feel good-I only turned it down to 325 degrees instead of the 225 degrees-back in a minute-maybe thats a good thing cause of the strawberries being just thawed-lol-got an extra 15 minutes baking at higher temp. now I have never done that one before-giggling)

Remove the cake from oven when center no longer looks shiny or wet, and run a wet knife around the inside edge of pan. turn the oven off and return the cake to the oven for another 30 minutes. chill uncovered, overnight.

To serve the recipe says to frost-no I don't want frosting on my cheesecake, and serve with fresh berries. Enjoy!

I am hoping my cheesecake comes out looking as good as this photo I just found lol

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