Tuesday was my husband’s birthday. I tried to make it a special day for him because he never really makes a fuss about anything and is so laid back. He takes such good care of me. I don’t want to brag too much about my husband, but I think he deserves somewhat of a mention. My husband, Trace, brings me my cup of coffee in bed, every morning. He will even make my breakfasts on his day off. He helps me endlessly and especially when I am having a hard day with my Rheumatoid Arthritis. He has been my hands and my legs when mine haven’t worked. He works ten hour days and still comes home to load the dishwasher or fold the laundry that’s in the dryer. He loves his children and hurries home every night to be with us. He never complains and he’s alright with everything…even a dinner without meat. He gets two days off from work and he spends them with us, whether we sit at home watching a movie or hike up a mountain, it’s fun with him. He’s a kid at heart and all you have to do is hear him laugh to realise that! MashAllah, he is a wonderful guy and may Allah always keep him happy and healthy. Alhamdulillah, we have a great time together and every day I thank God for bringing him into my life.
1 tablespoon/15g granulated/caster sugar
5 tablespoons/75g unsalted butter, melted
1 tablespoon/15g unsalted butter, melted, for greasing pan
2 1/2lbs/1.13kg cream cheese (I use Philadelphia), cut in chunks at room temperature
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 1/2cups/298g granulated/caster sugar
1/3 cup/71g sour cream
2 teaspoons/10ml fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons/10ml vanilla extract
2 large, organic egg yolks
6 large, organic eggs
*NOTE: In the US, I use the Whole Foods 365 brand graham crackers. They are preservative and hydrogenated oil free. You can use the Nabisco brand if you desire and you will need 8 whole crackers to get 1 cup of cracker crumbs. I use a food processor to make the crumbs uniformly fine. You could crush them by hand/rolling pin but make sure you get it as fine and uniform as possible.
Please, there is no substitute for fresh lemon juice, don’t use that bottled junk, especially in a cheesecake where all flavours are well pronounced.
Preheat oven to 325 deg F/ 163 deg C
Oven rack should be in the lower middle position.
In a bowl, mix the graham cracker crumbs and sugar together.
Add the 5 tablespoons/75g of melted butter and toss with fork.
Brush the bottom and sides of the pan with the remaining butter.
Make sure to leave some butter for greasing later.
Empty the moistened crumbs into the pan and press evenly into
the bottom of the pan.
Bake for about 10 minutes, when you can smell them they are done.
Cool on a rack and prepare the filling.
Increase the oven to 500 deg F/ 260 deg C
In the bowl of a standing mixer with the paddle attachment;
beat the cream cheese until it is broken up and softened.
Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl with a spatula;
add half of the sugar and the salt and beat for a minute.
Scrape the sides and bottom again;
add the remaining sugar and beat until combined.
Scrape the sides and bottom again;
add the sour cream, lemon juice and vanilla and beat at low speed.
After about a minute, scrape bowl again;
add the egg yolks and beat until combined.
Scrape bowl again and then add the eggs, two at a time.
After each addition, scrape the bowl to ensure even distribution,
and beat about a minute each time, making sure the eggs are
Brush the sides of the pan again with the remaining butter
and place pan on a baking sheet to catch any spills or leaks.
Pour the filling into the cooled crust and bake 10 minutes.
After 10 minutes and without opening the oven door, reduce the oven temperature to 200 deg F/ 93 deg C.
Bake till the internal temperature registers 150 deg F/ 66 deg C.
Use an instant read thermometer to measure.
This will take approximately 1 hour and 20 minutes.
Transfer cake to a cooling rack and cool for about 5 minutes.
Run a small knife between the cake and pan and cool till barely warm.
Wrap tightly in plastic wrap and chill in the fridge.
To serve, remove the sides of the springform pan and run a thin metal
spatula between the crust and pan.
After loosening the crust all around, slide the cake on to a serving plate.
Use a knife dipped in hot water to cut pieces of the cheesecake.
Serve plain with whipped cream or with fruit.
I like mine with fresh strawberries.
You can even use a good quality fruit preserve to top the cake.
Hope you try making this cheesecake at least once.
It’s not hard and I am sure, once you taste it, you will make it again.
It’s a great make ahead pudding.
I have successfully frozen it before and it tastes just like freshly made.
If you are freezing the whole cheesecake, leave it in the pan.
Double wrap it, pan and all,with some cling film and then double wrap
it with some heavy duty tin foil.
When you want to serve, just thaw overnight in the fridge and then
unmold as before on to a serving plate.
Tomorrow, my hubby is off and with Friday prayer and some much needed gardening and of course, the Royal Wedding of our Prince William, we will be busy, especially since I have to get up at 3am to watch it live. I want to wish you all a great and productive weekend! I will try and make something scrumptious over the weekend to share with you all.