Simply Sensational Cheesecakes – Chef Susan Holding

Old Rittenhouse Inn White Chocolate Cheesecake 
Recipe by Mary Phillips, Chef, 301 Rittenhouse Avenue, Bayfield, WI. 
1/4 C. butter, melted 
1 C. (12) zwieback crumbs 
2 Tbsp. sugar 
1 Tbsp. cocoa 
2 8-ounce packages cream cheese, softened 
1 3-ounce package cream cheese, softened 
1 C. sugar 
4 tsp. flour 
5 ounces white chocolate, melted 
2 eggs 
1 egg yolk 
2 Tbsp. white crème-de-cocoa 
1 tsp. vanilla 
2 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, melted 
2 Tbsp. dairy sour cream 
2 tsp. white crème-de-cocoa 
Add butter to combined crumbs, sugar and cocoa; mix well. Coat sides of buttered 9-inch spring form pan with 3 tablespoons crumb mixture. Press remaining crumb mixture onto bottom of pan. Chill. Combine cream cheese, sugar and flour, mixing at medium speed on electric mixer until well blended. Blend in white chocolate. Add eggs and yolk, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Blend in crème-de-cocoa and vanilla; pour over crust. Bake at 350 degrees for 50 minutes. Loosen cake from rim of pan; cool before removing rim of pan. Combine chocolate, sour cream and crème-de-cocoa; mix well. Spread over cheesecake. Chill. Makes 12 to 16 servings.

Lemon Cheesecake With Glazed Raspberries

As printed in Gourmet Magazine – by Mary Phillips, Old Rittenhouse Inn

For the Shell:  
2 cups all-purpose flour  
1/2 cup sugar  
2 teaspoons grated lemon rind  
2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, cut into bits  
2 large egg yolks  
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Make the shell: In a bowl combine the flour, sugar, and the lemon rind, blending in the butter until the mixture resembles meal. Add the egg yolks and vanilla combining the mixture until it forms a dough. Remove the ring from a 10-inch spring form pan. Press on third of the dough onto the bottom of the springform pan and bake the dough in a preheated 400 degree oven for 8 minutes. Let it cool on a rack. Return the ring to the pan and pat the remaining dough onto the sides of the pan, at least 2 inches high.

For the Filling:  
2 1/2 pounds cream cheese, softened  
1 3/4 cups sugar  
1 teaspoon grated lemon rind  
1/4 teaspoon vanilla  
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour  
1/4 teaspoon salt  
4 large whole eggs  
2 large egg yolks  
1/4 cup heavy cream

Make the filling: Using an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese until it is smooth. Then beat in the sugar, lemon rind, and vanilla. Beat in the flour, salt. One at a time, add the whole eggs, yolks, and heavy cream. Pour the filling into the shell and bake the cheesecake on a baking sheet in a preheated 425 degree oven for 12 minutes. Reduce the heat to 300 degrees and continue backing the cheese cake for 1 hour more. (It will not be set.) Let the cheesecake cool on a rack.

For the Topping:  
3/4 cup sugar  
3 tablespoons corn starch  
2 tablespoons light corn syrup  
3-4 drops red food coloring  
3-4 cups fresh raspberries

Make the topping: In a saucepan, combine 3/4 cup water, sugar and cornstarch, cooking the mixture over moderately high heat, stirring until it is thick and clear. Remove from the heat and stir in the corn syrup and food coloring. Let the topping cool until it is lukewarm. Meanwhile, arrange the raspberries on the cheesecake and pour the topping over them. Chill the cheesecake for at least 3 hours or overnight.

Junior’s Classic Cheesecake

Sponge Cake Layer

    3 large eggs, separated
    3 drops lemon extract

Cream Cheese Filling 


Sponge cake:

Preheat the oven to 350 F and generously butter a 9-inch springform pan.

Sift the cake flour, baking powder, and salt together in a medium sized bowl and set aside.

Beat the egg yolks together in a large bowl with an electric mixer on high for 3 minutes.

With the mixer still running, gradually add the 1/3 cup of sugar and continue beating until thick light-yellow ribbons form in the bowl, about 5 minutes more.   Beat in the vanilla and lemon extracts.

Sift the flour mixture over the batter and stir it in by hand until mo more white flecks appear.

Then blend in the butter.

In a clean bowl, using clean dry beaters, beat the egg whites and cream of tartar together on high until frothy. Gradually add the remaining 2 tablespoons sugar and continue beating until stiff peaks form (the whites should stand up in stiff peaks, but not be dry).

Stir about 1/3 cup of the whites into the batter, then gently fold in the remaining whites (don’t worry if a few white specks remain).

Gently spoon the batter into the pan.

Bake the cake just until the center of the cake springs back when lightly touched, only about 10 minutes (watch carefully!) Let the cake cool in the pan on a wire rack while you continue making the cheesecake filling.   Do not remove the cake from the pan.

Cream Cheese Filling

Place one 8-ounce package of the cream cheese, 1/3 cup of the sugar, and the cornstarch in a large bowl.

Beat with an electric mixer on low until creamy, about 3 minutes, then beat in the remaining 3 packages of the cream cheese.

Increase the mixer speed to high and beat in the remaining 1 1/3 cups of the sugar, then beat in the vanilla.

Blend in the eggs, one at a time, beating the batter well after each one. Blend in heavy cream.

At this point mix the filling only until completely blended.  Be careful not to overmix the batter.

Gently spoon the cheese filling on top of the baked sponge cake layer.

Place the springform pan in a large shallow pan containing hot water that comes about 1 inch up the side of the pan.

Bake the cheesecake until the center barely jiggles when you shake the pan, about 1 hour.

Cool the cake on a wire rack for 1 hour.

Then cover the cake with plastic wrap and refrigerate until it’s completely cold, at least 4 hours or overnight. Remove the sides of the springform pan.

Slide the cake off of the bottom of the pan onto a serving plate.

Or, if you wish, simply leave the cake on the removable bottom of the pan and place it on a serving plate. Store any leftover cheesecake in the refrigerator.

Carnagie Deli’s Famous Cheesecake

Cookie Crust
1/2 cup butter softened
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 dsh salt
1 x egg
1 1/2 cup Flour
5 pkt cream cheese – (8 oz ea) softened
1 1/3 cup sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tsp lemon juice
1/3 cup sour cream
2 tbl flour
3 x eggs



Leave the butter and cream cheese out of the refrigerator for 30 to 60 minutes to soften. Make the crust by creaming together butter, 1/4 cup sugar, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla and salt. Add 1 egg and mix well. Add 1 1/2 cups flour and stir well to combine.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees, then press half of the dough onto the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan. Bake for 5 to 7 minutes or until edge of dough begins to turn light brown. Cool.

When the pan has cooled, take the remaining dough and press it around the inside edge of the pan. Don’t go all the way up to the top though. Leave about a 1/2-inch margin from the top of the pan.

Increase oven temperature to 500 degrees. Combine cream cheese, 1 1/3 cups sugar, 2 teaspoons vanilla and lemon juice with an electric mixer in a large bowl until smooth. Mix in sour cream and 2 tablespoons flour. Add the eggs and mix on slow speed until combined.

Pour cream cheese filing into the pan and bake at 500 degrees for 10 minutes. Reduce heat to 350 and bake for 30 to 35 minutes more, or until the center is firm. Cover and cool in refrigerator for several hours or overnight before serving.

This recipe yields 8 servings.

Comments: Carnegie Deli’s huge pastrami sandwiches were selected as the best in New York by New York Magazine in 1975, but it’s the cheesecakes, which can be shipped anywhere in the country, that really put this famous deli on the map. The secret to cloning a traditional New York cheesecake is in creating the perfect not-too-sweet sugar cookie crust, and varying the cooking temperature so that we get a nicely browned top. This clone for the best New York-style cheesecake around is our special tribute this week to a great American city. 


Cheesecake Tips and Techniques

Cheesecake’s distinct texture relies on cheese blended with eggs and sugar, but it’s the kind of cheese that informs the character of the cake.

  • Dense New York-style is made with cream cheese; lighter Italian with ricotta. (These distinctions are full of ironies: New York-style relies heavily on Philadelphia cream cheese, and what we think of as Italian is actually more Little Italy than Verona.)
  • Other cheeses can be used, such as Neufchatel (a form of cream cheese); cottage cheese; or fresh cheeses like fromage blanc, mascarpone and even tangy goat.
  • Texture varies from one step away from eating straight cheese to light and ethereal.


Cheesecakes, unlike other cakes where beating air into the batter is key, suffer if over-mixed. For best results, have all the ingredients (cheese, eggs, liquids and flavorings) at room temperature before blending.


The big bugaboo with cheesecake is cracking. Cheesecakes, like custards, rely heavily on eggs to set, which means they must cook gently and slowly. Otherwise the eggs puff, overcook and get grainy, then constrict when cooled, resulting in an undesirable split in your smooth cake.

The main trick with cheesecake is gentle, coaxing heat. Just as you want them to cook slowly, you also want them to cool gradually. Quick changes of temperature upset the structure of the cake, causing cracks. For a moister, creamier cake, turn off the heat when the center’s still loose and let cool in the oven.

  • Many cheesecakes, like our classic one, are baked in a water bath (a pan of water) to moderate the temperature. Since water remains at a constant temperature, the cake sets slowly, resulting in a super-creamy cheesecake.
  • With richly flavored cheesecakes, like our peanut butter or chocolate ones, the same result can be achieved by baking slowly at low temperatures.
  • To prevent the cheesecake from cracking as it cools, run a thin knife around the edge of the cake as soon as it comes out of the oven. After chilling, remove the springform ring (but not the metal base).

A crack in your cheesecake is not the end of the world. Simply use it as a starting point when cutting your first slice.

Cutting Cheesecake

Dip a knife in warm water and wipe dry before slicing each piece.


Because of the high fat content, most cheesecakes freeze well for up to two weeks if wrapped tightly in both film and foil. But cheesecakes with a high water content, such as our Fresh Cream Cheesecake or Passion Fruit Cheesecake, will become icy, so freezing is not advised.


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