Brooklyn-Style Cheesecake: the dairy, dairy best

“WOW… This is the best cheesecake I’ve ever tasted.” – Halley, my boss.

“This is really good. In fact, I think it’s the best cheesecake I’ve ever had.” – Jeff, my co-worker.

“Hey, this cheesecake is REALLY good…” – John, my brother-in-law.

There’s nothing like unsolicited raves from taste-testers to make my day. Especially when what they’re tasting is uncharted territory – at least for me, a New Englander with only the tiniest of connections to New York, from whence this particular type of cheesecake springs.

It’s true, I actually lived in New York for a few years – Yonkers and Mt. Vernon, to be precise – but that was pre-K. All of my growing up and adulthood has been in New England which, aside from scattered pockets, is sadly bereft of an Empire State institution: the New York deli.

A towering corned beef on rye. Hot pastrami, its burned, fatty edges melting in your mouth. Half-sours. Dr. Brown’s Cel-Ray, an oddly compelling celery-flavored soda.

To say nothing of lox, bagels, and cream cheese. Whitefish and eggs. Plus liverwurst and onions, a sandwich that’ll drive away unwelcome company for hours afterwards.

And then there’s dessert: fudge layer cake. Rugelach. Rice pudding. In Brooklyn: the famous Blackout Cake.

And cheesecake, the sine qua non of any self-respecting NYC deli.

We’ve all had cheesecake, right? It’s not hard to make, and is universally beloved.

Maybe you’ve made a box mix – add milk, stir, and pour into a graham cracker crust, no baking needed.

Or maybe you’ve made it from scratch; after all, it’s not complicated. Cream cheese, sugar, eggs, and vanilla, gently beaten and poured into a graham cracker (or cookie crumb) crust, baked, and crowned with the fruit topping of your choice.

I’ve done it myself; Easy Cheesecake is a never-fail recipe I clipped from The Boston Globe decades ago, one whose grease-stained edges attest to many cheesecakes.

But Brooklyn-Style Cheesecake? Never heard of such a thing, until “Junior’s Most Fabulous Cheesecake & Desserts” restaurant in Brooklyn, self-proclaimed home of the “World’s Most Fabulous Cheesecake,” was featured on the Food Network a year or so ago.

I was fascinated by this cheesecake’s crust: not crushed graham crackers, nor even a cookie crust, like so many New York cheesecake recipes, but a layer of sponge cake.

Cake crust – really?

So say the bakers at Junior’s.

I tried it; found a couple of online recipes purporting to be “Junior’s original.” Followed them faithfully.

The result was OK, but the process was weird and difficult. So I streamlined it, added a couple of practical-sense touches, and voilà! A light, golden spongecake crust.

So, while it’s truly the filling that shines here – “best ever,” says the crowd – I encourage you not to blow off the Brooklyn-style cake crust. Change is good, right?

If you decide it’s “meh,” go on back to your graham crackers. But at least you will have experienced one of New York’s culinary landmarks: a Junior’s cheesecake.

Chanukah starts tomorrow. With its emphasis on dairy foods, it’s the perfect opportunity to showcase our version of the
“World’s Most Fabulous Cheesecake” – Brooklyn-Style Cheesecake.

Click anywhere on this picture to enlarge it to full size – this will work for any of the photos you see in this blog post.

Sponge cake is light, airy, and “spongy,” in the nicest of ways – think Twinkies. This is a great place to use our cake flour blend, a lower protein flour perfect for light, fine-textured cakes. If you don’t have any, never fear; I’ll give directions for all-purpose flour, as well.

Since cream cheese is the star of this particular show, it pays to use the best – which in our book is Philadelphia. You’ll need 2 pounds – four of the 8-ounce blocks. A few hours before you’re going to bake, take them out of the fridge, unwrap, and let them come to room temperature. It’s much easier to make a smooth filling with room-temperature cream cheese than with cold.

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 9″ round springform pan or deep 9″ round removable-bottom pan.

This cake is very tall, and requires an extra-deep pan. Measure your pan; if it’s not at least 2 3/4″ deep, don’t attempt this recipe.*

*Another option – make your usual graham cracker crust in a 9″ pie pan, and fill with HALF the following filling recipe.

Wrap the bottom and sides of the springpan with aluminum foil, preferably a single sheet.

To make the crust: Place the following in a mixing bowl –

1/2 cup (2 ounces) King Arthur Unbleached Cake Flour Blend*
2 tablespoons sugar
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons vegetable oil or melted butter
3 large egg yolks, whites reserved

*If you don’t have cake flour, use King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour, reducing the amount to 7 tablespoons (1/2 cup less 1 tablespoon).

Beat until well combined; the mixture will be stiff and somewhat crumbly/pasty.

In a separate bowl, beat the reserved egg whites with 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar until they’re frothy. Add 1/4 cup sugar gradually, beating all the while, until the mixture is stiff and glossy.

Gently but thoroughly mix the beaten egg whites into the batter. Take care to keep the batter light; mix gently, don’t beat. You may find at the end there are still some tiny lumps in the batter; that’s OK.

Spoon the batter into the prepared pan. Bake for about 15 minutes, until the cake has risen, is barely beginning to brown, and a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean.

Remove the cake from the oven, and immediately loosen the edges with a table knife or thin spatula. Allow it to cool in the pan while you make the filling. It’ll settle and shrink a bit as it cools; that’s OK. Leave the oven on.

To make the filling: Place the following in a mixing bowl –

one 8-ounce package cream cheese, at room temperature
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch

Mix on low speed until smooth.

Add the remaining three 8-ounce packages cream cheese, continuing to beat on low speed until smooth.

Add 1 1/3 cups sugar and beat until well combined. Again, keep the beater speed on low; you don’t want to aerate this dense filling.

Beat in 2 large eggs, then 1 tablespoon vanilla.

Finally, gently beat in 3/4 cup heavy cream or whipping cream.

The filling should be smooth and pourable.

Place the springform pan into a larger pan, and fill the larger pan with enough hot water to come 1″ up the sides of the springform.

Spoon the batter over the cake in the pan. The filling will expand and rise, so make sure you don’t fill the pan right to the brim.

Place both pans on a lower-middle rack of your oven. Bake the cheesecake for 75 to 90 minutes, until the cake is just barely beginning to turn golden around the edges, and the top appears set. The center will still look jiggly; that’s OK. A thermometer inserted into the center should register about 160°F to 165°F.

Remove the cake from the oven, and gently lift it out of the water bath onto a rack.

Run a table knife or spatula around the edges of the pan to separate the filling from the pan; this will help keep the cheesecake from sinking.

Allow the cake to cool at room temperature, undisturbed, for 2 to 3 hours, until it’s no longer warm to the touch. Refrigerate the cake, covered, until you’re ready to serve it.

To serve, slice with a knife dipped in hot water and wiped dry. Repeat this step after every slice.

This cake is traditionally served without topping; but feel free to add your own favorite, if desired.

Now – I know many of you are itching to tell me that this isn’t a REAL New York cheesecake. It’s not Carnegie Deli’s cheesecake. Nor is it Lindy’s, nor that of the newly trendy Two Little Red Hens.

Junior’s Brooklyn cheesecake, like the borough itself, has attitude – mostly fostered by that sponge cake crust. It’s authentic to Junior’s, in Flatbush, in New York – and that’s good enough for me.

Read, bake, and review (please) our recipe for Brooklyn-Style Cheesecake.

Print just the recipe.

PJ Hamel
About

PJ Hamel grew up in New England, graduated from Brown University, and was a Maine journalist before joining King Arthur Flour in 1990. PJ bakes and writes from her home on Cape Cod, where she enjoys beach-walking, her husband, two dogs, and really good food!

comments

  1. deidremefford

    Will definately give this a try this weekend but if you want an incredible experience try Maida Heatter’s 8-hr cheesecake. 2 lbs of cream cheese, no crust, stark white inside & out. Baked 8 – yes 8! – hours in a low oven. Chemistry changes the structure/consistency to an entirely other level of cheesecake. If you are a cheesecake purist this will do it for you.

    It sounds delicious, definitely something I would like to try out in the future!-Jon

    Reply
  2. martibeth

    P.J., that does look pretty, and I’ve got plenty of cream cheese in the fridge at the moment, not to mention KAF’s cake flour. Thanks for that recipe. Merry Xmas, P.J.

    And Merry Christmas to you, too, Marti. Hope things are going well with you – and my favorite cows! Enjoy your cheesecake – PJH

    Reply
    1. Allison

      Thanks for the recipe. I am from Spring Valley, NY where as a child I enjoyed a fabulous cheesecake with a cake crust from our neighborhood bakery, Pakula’s. I have been searching for a recipe like this for years. Can’t wait to try it!! Happy Holidays!

    2. Ben L

      Not sure who Allison is but I’m also from Spring Valley and remember Pakula’s very well. We’ll be having this cheesecake for our Christmas dinner. Thanks. The crust looks terrific.

  3. Zanne4848

    If in a big hurry and not able to do the cake , could ladyfingers be used or something similar?
    BTW, a bakery in Hackensack, NJ (at least 50 yrs ago) used to make a tall, scrumptious cheesecake with a bottom of crushed pineapple. I know I can’t just put down drained pineapple, but can anyone suggest how to do this?
    Thanks

    Absolutely – ladyfingers would be a fine substitute. As would a plain graham cracker crust. Or no crust at all – and sprinkle crushed cookies (flavor of your choice) onto the plate when serving. As for the pineapple – why not make the bottom part of a pineapple upside-down cake, using crushed pineapple in place of the rings, and no cherries or nuts? Seems to me this would work out pretty well… PJH

    Reply
    1. Dotsie

      I have been making Junior’s cheesecake for years. I use crushed up Nabisco Bills wafers (mixed with a little butter). So yummy.

  4. lorrainesfav

    PJ-Love the cake crust idea and recipe! A couple of years ago, I decided to try mixing the cheesecake batter in the food processsor. It works perfect and the batter does not get too much air in it. Being an X NYer, I have tried lots of cheesecakes too. This one looks great. I will try it for our Christmas Eve dinner. Nice and creamy-Happy Holidays and lots more great recipes to all at KAF

    Reply
  5. barrie2

    Love this! In my ratty old trusty Philadelphia Brand Cream Cheese Cheesecake cookbook (well used and well loved), there is a similar recipe that uses a yellow cake layer on the bottom, regular vanilla cheesecake in the middle and a ganache-like “frosting” poured over the cooled cheesecake – “Boston Cream Pie Cheesecake”. I made it once and it was delicious! Would be pretty easy to do here too – just add the ganache. YUM!

    Sounds decadent, everything tastes better with a little (or a lot of) ganache on it!-Jon

    Reply
  6. jitterro

    Love cake crust on cheesecakes. I really need to make one of these someday…with a sour cream topping 😀

    I do as well, I have never heard of cheesecake with a cake base until this blog post. A testament to the fact that there is always something to learn!-Jon

    Reply
  7. lesnesmn

    I’ve been making this cheesecake for several years now and consider it the best recipe I’ve ever used. I’ve even made it without the spongecake layer and put the cheesecake layer between two Italian Cream Cake layers and frosted it with a cream cheese frosting. Delicious! Definitely a dessert for a special occasion and a lot of people. Also I’ve found that instead of wrapping the cheesecake pan with foil, I put it down inside a silicone pan a little larger than the cheesecake pan and then put it down in my water bath. No more leaky pans! Thanks for the post.

    That must be quite the cake! Cheesecake as a cake filling, what a concept.-Jon

    Reply
  8. Zanne4848

    P.J.

    Wouldn’t I have to put something in the crushed (drained) pineapple to keep it together on the bottom without ruining the cheese filling? Maybe cook it with some cornstarch or add Clearjel?

    Or maybe I should go with some pineapple preserves (if I can find it).

    I definitely want to try your cake layer, when I think I have the time to pay attention to all the components. But the cheesecake looks really terrific – can’t wait to try it.

    It seems to me that a thin layer of crushed pineapple mixed with butter/brown sugar syrup – e.g., the bottom of a pineapple upside down cake – would hold up the cheese filling, which is generally quite thick. However, pineapple preserves are a definite option, as is simply simmering pineapple upside down cake topping until thick. Let us know how it comes out! PJH

    Reply
  9. yranan

    The cake looks and sounds amazing! Just a bit of a correction though, Chanukah is not the holiday with the emphasis on dairy products-that’s Shavuot, which comes in the spring. Chanukah is the Festival of Lights and the emphasis is on fried foods, in particular, sufganiyot (filled doughnuts) and potato latkes. Yummy stuff!

    Reply
  10. Cindy Leigh

    This looks so good! I way prefers baked cheesecake to an instant, although cheesecake junkies will make do with the quicker versions when they need immediate cheesecake!
    I love my moms ancient version the best. It’s no crust, baked Ina tube LAN, and labor intensive, it has cream cheese, sour cream,and cottage cheese. It’s not overly sweet, which is fine, since we add a variety of pie filling toppings. Blueberry, strawberry, and pineapple (thickened ) are our favorites.
    It’s labor intensive if done correctly because properly done, the cream cheese and cottage cheese should be creamed through one of those cone shaped sieve and dowel thingies that you ca still find in the canning section of most old time hardware stores. We have tried using a food processor instead, and those results are not good. The cake “breaks” and weeps and the consistancy is not right. The closest I’ve come is feeding thecreamcheese and cottage cheese through the food grinder attachment on my KitchenAid. I think maybe extruding is gentler and aerated the mixture some? Not sure, but the old way is the best way. And maybe that’s why we didn’t get it that often? Mom always says it was a real chore. My dad adored it though and we always got it on holidays and his birthday.

    That does sound quite time consuming, however sometimes when the final product is so great is it worth the struggle!-Jon

    Reply
  11. chloe

    PJ is right–there is also a tradition of eating dairy products at Chanukah in honor of Judith’s cleverness and bravery. Thank you for honoring it with such a delicious looking recipe!

    Reply
  12. mdlrvrmuncher

    If you using smaller pans (I have 6 and 7 inch) can I directly ratio ingredients or is there a thing or two that I don’t decrease? (I am thinking eggs.)
    I already make your chocolate cheesecake at Christmas, Italian sweet cheesecake, too many cookies, and a new item each year. (There are 5 of us!)

    If reducing the recipe (by a 1/2 or a 1/3), you will want each ingredient to also decrease. The more egg in a cheesecake, the firmer and fluffier it will be (less creamy). I would convert the recipe to ounces and then convert each down to however large a cheesecake you’d like–this makes for a tall cheesecake, so I might suggest trimming the recipe in half to start and see how it turns out! You could always make a full recipe for the sponge cake base and simply bake the other half in a smaller square pan, flip onto a clean tea towel, spread with filling, roll up, frost, and make a mini buche de noel! http://www.kingarthurflour.com/recipes/bche-de-nol-recipe Happy Baking! Kim@KAF

    Reply
  13. sandra Alicante

    I made this this morning! OK, I didn’t use the base as hubby does not like cake base in his cheesecake (I do).
    I took the warning about the depth of tin to heart and ended up making a smaller cake with the left over mix. However, I could have got away with just the one, it barely rose. No idea why not, maybe our eggs are not as big? Or perhaps because I was careful not to beat in much air.
    Anyway, the second one, I added orange zest and oil of cassia. Ooh la la! Lovely christmassy spicy flavour.Mmmmm! You could use grated nutmeg on top, rather like a egg custard tart (a UK favourite). Anyhow, I now have lots of cheesecake for our friend arriving tomorrow! Poor thing, her hubby won’t even try cheesecake so she never makes it.

    That sounds delicious!! I am certain your friend will enjoy the treat–very thoughtful of you! (Also, she might appreciate a mini springform pan to create personal indulgences down the road!). However, before I get carried away, the thing with cheesecakes and rising: yes, the amount of air whipped into the filling (via the eggs, cream cheese, and sugar) plus the sheer number of eggs, will determine how much it will rise. This particular recipe is low in eggs to make the cheesecake very creamy instead of light and fluffy (the more eggs a cheesecake contains, the more “cake-like” and fluffy it will be!). I hope this sheds some light on your Christmas baking! Best, Kim@KAF

    Reply
  14. enjhagen

    For ZANNE4848…For a pineapple filling, I have mixed a small jar of pineapple preserves with a small, drained can of unsweetened, crushed pineapple and spread it over a typical graham cracker crust. It’s not overly sweet and holds together nicely, not runny at all.

    Thanks so much for connecting here – I’m sure Zanne will appreciate this. Sounds delicious! PJH

    Reply
  15. dawn01

    This sounds wonderful. If you make a lot of cheesecake I have found that investing in a silicone cake pan the size or slightly larger than you cheesecake pan is easier than having to wrap pan in foil. Just put cheesecake pan in silicone pan and you never have to worry about water leaking through the foil. You can get inexpensive silicone pans on some commercial baking websites.

    Oh my goodness, what a great tip! Thanks so much, Dawn – happy holidays. PJH

    Reply
  16. ckide

    I’ve made this cheesecake twice in the last 2 weeks. It is awesome! Everyone loved it, so I will definitely keep this recipe handy. Thanks so much!
    I made it for Christmas, and we still have about 1/3 of it in the fridge. I had a piece with some hot fudge on it for a mid-day treat yesterday. SO good and SO decadent. Glad we’ll have this recipe around for a long, long time. Salud! ~ MaryJane

    Reply
  17. DePayne

    I made this cake last night for a party. When i served it everyone thought i bought it – they were amazed with the flavor and texture. It is the creamiest cheesecake I have ever made. I was born and raised in Brooklyn and am very familiar with Junior’s cheesecake – this is better. This recipe now replaces all others.

    Wow, so happy to hear that – score one for you and KA! Thanks so much for sharing your success here – PJH

    Reply
  18. sarah h

    This has little to do with brooklyn style which will be my next experiment in the kitchen but I have a wonderful recipe I’ve made it twice now. I call it s’more cheesecake. I use the graham cracker crust but I’m sure shortbread or oreo would work fine. I start with an already-made graham cracker crust, a box of no-bake cheesecake crust and two 8 oz cont. of cream cheese, as well as some powdered sugar and a tbs of vanilla. I also have some chocolate chips(or chocolate bar) and mini (or jumbo) marshmallows. Layer the finished crust with chocolate chips or chocolate pieces dispersed evenly and top with marshmallows (I’m sure melted chocolate, fudge or chocolate syrup would be fine too); you may want to rip up the marshmallows into smaller pieces if they’re jumbo). Then cover the crust with the no-bake crust and cover it.(LIKE A SMORE) bake at 350 till its golden brown and center s’more mixture is melted. Press down a little and add the no-bake filling on top. Then either soften two 8 oz pkgs of cream cheese by leaving them out for a few hrs or in the microwave and pour powdered sugar in, stirring until “cheesecake” has reached your desired sweetness. Add this mixture directly on top of the nobake filling layer (u can add a layer of melted chocolate w a splash of milk between the two cheesecake layers as to seperate them. And/or top with this or syrup. Freeze or refrigerate for several hours until thickened and chilled 🙂 I’m sure this may have been done, but I thought of it myself one night. Hope you enjoy!

    Gosh, Sarah! That sounds sumptuous (although not too difficult! Something to try out this week for a night out by the grill). Thank you for sharing! Kim@KAF

    Reply
  19. Ann Goldman

    Coming from Brooklyn, and very much a fan of Juniors, if I’m going to bake a “Jewish style” cheesecake (remember, Brooklyn also has “Italian style,” ricotta based cheese cakes as well) , hands down Maida Heatter’s cheesecakes are truly the benchmark. She was based in Miami….which for some people is a suburb of Brooklyn.

    Reply
  20. Sandra Baumgardner

    Is it possible to substitute splenda for sugar in this recipe? I’d love to make this for my brother who is diabetic and adores cheesecake. Also, any advice about alterations to desert recipes in which you substite splenda for sugar?

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel, post author

      Sandra, I’m really sorry, but I have no experience using Splenda in cheesecake. I’m going to hazard a guess it would work, as the sugar really has nothing to do with structure… but no guarantees. As for other recipes, we did a series of blog posts on baking with Splenda a few years ago; search “Splenda” in the blog search box to read about what we found. Good luck – PJH

  21. Gwen

    my grandparents had come from nyc & everytime we went up to rochester shopping from my hometown of canandaigua,ny, my grandfather would ask us to bring him some cheesecake & eel (yuck).
    we got both at sibley’s dept store. the cheesecake never saw a graham cracker—it had some kind of crust, not pastry.
    would that be a new york style cheesecake. i’ve never seen it anywhere else.

    Reply
    1. MaryJane Robbins

      If it has a cake style crust and a dense, rich texture it’s probably a NY style cheesecake. ~ MJ

    1. PJ Hamel, post author

      Haven’t tried it – but I’d say you could probably add a sour cream topping maybe 10-15 minutes before the end of the bake? Rather than bake it longer… PJH

  22. Sri

    Don’t know why I stumbled across this recently but decided I needed to know when you said it received such rave reviews. Never had the cake crust myself before and glad tried it, but we preferred KAFs graham crust. 🙂 and while we really enjoyed this cheesecake and I love kaf and adore PJ, we liked the ny cheesecake w it’s lemon zest and texture a bit better. 🙂 but room for more than one cheesecake in this world!

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel, post author

      I made this cheesecake with a graham cracker crust for Thanksgiving; the crowd I was baking for prefers that type of crust, and it was yummy. Hey, Sri, as you say – there’s room for MANY cheesecakes in this world! PJH

  23. Valerie Condron

    This is on my list for the office party, but as I have made similar with a pie crust/ graham crust, but I swirl apricot filling before baking with a toothpick or knife and it is awesome!

    Reply
  24. Jennie Morris

    If I want to do this as individual cheesecakes, would cupcake liners work or would I need individual springform pans?

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel, post author

      Jennie, I think cupcake liners will work just fine. You’ll need to cut way back on the baking time – and unfortunately, I really can’t tell you how long they’ll need to bake. Just start testing when they start to look set, and keep a close eye on them, OK? Good luck – PJH

    2. Jennie Morris

      So here is what I did…
      I decided that cupcakes would be a little small so I used my KAF burger bun pan with parchment on the bottom. I made the cake batter and divided between the 6 (please note that this was the beginning of my problem) cheesecakes. They took about 13 minutes (350 convection) and while they were cooling I made the cheesecake filling. OOPS. I should have paid more attention to the amount of filling. My 6 little cheesecakes only used 1/2 of the batter. So I tasted after I finished the first 6 – WOW! And I liked the ratio between cake and cheesecake so I made another recipe of cake and repeated the process using the rest of the cheesecake filling. I used a sheet pan and filled with water to hold my mini cheesecake pan (you really should change the name of the pan – I have) and baked for approximately 50 minutes. Since I had refrigerated the filling while finishing the first batch, they took several minutes longer than the room temperature ones. In the end, I had 12 beautiful, delicious mini cheesecakes. I won’t say individual cheesecakes because the size is really 2 servings. I don’t think I would ever make it as 1 cheesecake. I gave them as gifts this Christmas.

    3. PJ Hamel, post author

      Jennie, thanks so much for this valuable feedback – so much detail makes it useful for others wanting to try the same thing. And yes, we need to change the name of the hamburger bun pan – or keep it as a hamburger bun pan, but also sell it as a “mini dessert” pan, something of that nature- it makes lovely little pies and cakes, and now we know t’s perfect for sheesecake, too. Thanks! PJH

  25. Erin

    Made this for a work potluck luncheon- lots of great feedback, and several people were surprised that it was homemade. My only mistake was not making two! There were some sad faces as the last piece was snatched up. I am thinking the next time using Fiori di Sicilia in the cake crust- or at least using half orange extract/vanilla to give it a little twist, as I thought the cake crust could have had a little better flavor to pair with the amazing flavor of the filling. To get 16 perfect slices I cut it with plain dental floss-and used wax paper in between slices on a serving plate- this worked great-even the first slice out would have been presentable, but I was selfish and saved it for myself 😉 so delicious- thank you!

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel, post author

      Erin, you’re right, the crust is quite plain; I wanted to do this version with its traditional Junior’s-type crust. Adding Fiori would definitely liven it up; and many of my friends who’ve made this simply substitute a graham cracker crust, so that’s certainly an option, too. Thanks for your feedback here – PJH

  26. RRM

    I have to tell you that I simply love this recipe. I found it last month, and I’ve made it three times in the last three weeks. The last time, I added a teaspoon of orange extract to the crust and to the batter, and it was marvelous. My family wanted it topped with blueberries, and the hint of orange really worked well. Thanks so much for such an excellent recipe!

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel, post author

      Thanks for your feedback – much appreciated! I love that this recipe is good “plain,” but also lends itself so nicely to any number of tweaks – flavors, a different crust, etc. I want to try a butterscotch swirl in it sometime – doesn’t that sound yummy? 🙂 PJH

  27. LindaJOG

    Made it for my husband’s birthday. When I mixed the crust it was loose. I had to add 1/4 c of flour for it to get stiff. When I added the egg whites the flour mixture was like clay. Took forever to mix it together! Plus it tasted too salty. Loved the filling once everyone peeled the crust off.

    Reply
    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Hello Linda, it sounds like there may have been a measurement issue if your batter turned out that way. I would suggest to give our Baker’s Hotline a call if you’d like to troubleshoot. 855 371 2253 Jon@KAF

  28. Jib

    I have a Shortbread Cookie Mold!!Its Pottery but not glazed! Can II use it to bake in or is this type of mold only for molding the dough and then baking separate on a cookie Sheet! Would appreciate help

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel, post author

      Jib, I believe you should be able to bake in it; we sell unglazed bakeable shortbread molds, so I assume yours is bakeable, as well. To be sure, though, you’d best contact the manufacturer. Good luck – PJH

  29. preyn49

    I read over the recipe for the sponge cake and I believe there is a typo. A 1/2 cup is actually 4 ounces so that was a little confusing. I did 4 ounces not 2 and it came out fine.

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel, post author

      Actually, 1/2 cup flour is actually 2 ounces, as the recipe indicates – not 4 ounces. Glad it worked well for you despite having double the amount of flour – speaks to its versatility! PJH

  30. Carol Wilkie

    I have used a 10″ spring form pan for over 30 years. Recently in using a new recipe the pan leaked. I thought I needed to buy a new one. I bought one that had a non stick finish. The cheesecake got really dark on the sides almost burnt looking. I followed the recipe that I had always used, but for the 9″ size. I had never used a non stick pan. Does that have anything to do with how the cake came out?

    Reply
    1. PJ Hamel, post author

      Carol, if the finish of your new pan is dark (as I suspect it is), and the old pan was light-colored, then that’s the issue. Dark pans bake faster than light pans. Next time, you could try reducing your oven temperature by 25° and see if that helps. Good luck – PJH

  31. Nicki

    I haven’t even tried the finished product but tried the cheesecake batter and my mouth is watering- can’t wait! My 14 year old daughter wanted cheesecake without the graham cracker crust. Thank you for the walk through of the recipe!

    Reply
  32. Melanie

    I have a question: The directions fot the Brooklyn-Style Cheesecake it does not mention when to remove the spring form pan. I would appreciate some help.

    Reply
    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Melanie, I would recommend running the spatula around the edge of the pan after it comes out of the oven, allowing the cake to cool at room temperature, and then covering well and refrigerating, with the springform pan still attached. Leaving the pan on will provide more support and protection for the cheesecake. When you plan to serve, release the edges again with a spatula and then remove the sides of the pan. Barb@KAF

  33. Sam

    I made this for my dinner guests yesterday. I added a mixture of fresh berries macerated in a little sugar and OMG… it was heavenly. That cake base!!… it’s the best cheesecake I’ve ever eaten. A total delight. I won’t be making any other cheesecake from now on. Thanks for sharing.

    Reply
  34. Maharja

    Hey there. So the cake base is technically chiffon, isn’t it? I definitely will give this kind of cheesecake a shot, with a little experiment. But before doing the experiment, I would like to receive your aproval also answers for some questions. So, I’ve seen on TV that many of junior’s cheesecakes are layered just like normal cakes, which means there can be more than one layers of cake-cheesecake. I want to sandwich the cheesecake between two chiffons. Moreover, I will steam the cake inside a stovetop steamer. I will steam two layers of chiffon using ungreased round pan lined with parchment, then cool it upside down. I want the cake base to have more straight sides, so I won’t loose the edges of the cakes. After they totally cools, I will fill one of the pan with the cheesecake batter, than put another layer of chiffon on top of the batter. After it cools, I will loose the edges then transfer it into serving plate. Because this way, I think I wont face the cracking cheesecake problem. What do you think? Will the top layer of chiffon drown into the cheesecake batter? Will it giva any sort of advantage by using steaming method? thanks in advance!

    Reply
    1. The Baker's Hotline

      What an interesting idea! Our bakers here think that steaming this specific recipe might not give you great results (gummy texture). If you’d like to use the steaming method, use a cake recipe that you know works well with this application, otherwise just bake the two cake layers separately. You’ll also want to bake the cheesecake layer separately to prevent the cakes from soaking up the cheesecake batter. To prevent cracking, consider baking it in a water bath and don’t over bake it; the internal temperature should reach 160-165°F when it’s done. Assemble all the layers once they’re finished. Happy baking! Kye@KAF

    2. Maharja

      Well I have no idea about the possibility to bake the cheesecake layer separately. How do we assemble the layers then? In here, the type of cake that usually get steamed is oil/butter cake that relies on baking powder. So, I somehow feel that something as light as chiffon might work on that method. I insist on using chiffon because I feel that the texture and the moisture will go well together with the cheesecake. If gumminess (is that even a word?) is the issue, will covering the pan with cling wrap or tin foil prevent that from happening? If there is a possibility for the cake to soak up the cheesecake batter, by how much according to your brooklyn style cheesecake trial? Was there any obvious textural changes to the cake base? I came up with twice steam and sandwiching idea for several reasons: 1) I dont want to bother with oven bain marie 2) I want the layers stick to each other 3) I dont want doming surface on my cheesecake (because the cheesecake is sandwiched afterall) 4) I want to prevent drying of the top layer, which I feel it might be happening if baked inside oven. 5) I want to frost the cake using glacage miroir (to make it more into pattiserie style) 6) It may sounds unrealistic and annoying, but this time I dont want browning.
      I want to convert one recipe of cheesecake that has sweetened condensed milk and lime juice into dulce de leche without the lime juice. I understand that we can replace condensed milk wilk dulce de leche right away, but can I just ommit the lime juice? Or should I use water as placebo? My people dont like toothaching sweet desserts as the americans do. For most us, we feel those kind of desserts are nearly inedible. Is it possible to reduce the sweetness? By how much? If I also want to introduce salt to temper the sweetness, how much salt should be added? Here’s the recipe:
      3 250 gram packages of cream cheese, at room temperature

      1 300 mL tin sweetened condensed milk

      1 Tbsp freshly grated lime zest

      2 tsp vanilla extract

      2 large eggs, at room temperature

      1 large egg yolk, at room temperature

      ½ cup fresh lime juice

      Thanks in advance

    3. PJ Hamel, post author

      Maharja, if you include a top layer of cake, then I’d say there’s a good chance it will get gummy (and yes, gumminess is a word). Plastic wrap might protect it, though not sure how much. I didn’t notice the cake soaking up the cheesecake filling; as the filling is quite thick, it just sits atop the crust as it bake. And how about substituting brewed coffee or tea for the lime juice? Either of those flavors would marry well with dulce de leche, I think. Good luck with your cake — PJH

    4. The Baker's Hotline

      Maharja, try baking the cake and cheesecake elements separately and then assembling them once they’re cool if you’d like to have multiple layers. This will be much easier than baking all at once. Good luck! Kye@KAF

  35. Julie Miller

    I have been making cheesecakes for years now and found this recipe and thought why not give it a try. I have never gone back to my other recipes. This cheesecake without a doubt is the best cheesecake I have ever tasted let alone made. I have made it for our church bake sales and then got private offers to make it for people for special occasions. The only change I made is to put Amaretto liqueur in the batter instead of vanilla. This is just a fantastic recipe and so smooth and creamy.

    Reply
  36. Margo Haynes

    The best cheesecake I have ever eaten was in 1958 at this little German bakery in San Antonio, Tx. The owner was a small elderly, German woman that barely had a hint of an accent and her cheesecake looked much like yours above and it did have a crust on the bottom but at first I couldn’t see the difference between the crust and the cake…smooth as silk filling with just a hint of an indentation that she had topped with the most delicious sour cream topping and she called it a NY Cheesecake but the NYCheesecakes today could not touch hers in looks, quality or taste with a 10′ pole.
    I have searched for years for a recipe similar to hers. Hers did have a crust but it wasn’t hard like a cookie crust and it didn’t look quite like the spongecake crust that you make bit it’s darn sure close enough for me!

    Yours is fantastic! A delicious crust, a silky smooth and creamy filling! One couldn’t ask for more. Once again, King Arthur to the rescue! Bravo, P.J.!!!

    Reply
  37. Robin

    what if i soaked the sponge cake in condensed milk for a tres leches kinda deal

    is that crazy???????????????????????

    Reply
    1. The Baker's Hotline

      We like your inventiveness, Robin. While we think the flavor would be spot on, we’re worried the sponge would become too delicate and not be able to serve as a sturdy base. You might have a hard time getting the sponge to stay in tact if it’s soaked with all that deliciousness. Perhaps you should save your sweetened condensed milk in one of these other tasty recipes. Happy baking! Kye@KAF

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Hi Kat, if you’d like to make a crustless cheesecake you’re welcome to go ahead and prepare the filling as is. Be wary of using a springform pan, as it might be more likely to leak without a crust as a barrier. You might want to try using a pie pan instead, knowing that the slices may not serve perfectly. You could also bake the filling in individual ramekins to make it easier to serve as well (like it’s done in this blog here, just without the crust). Good luck and happy baking! Kye@KAF

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