Like many Japanese bakes, Japanese cheesecake is quite different to its European and American counterparts. It still has that distinct sweet cream cheese taste, but the vastly different baking method leads to an entirely different texture; one which is lighter than clouds and pillowy soft!
Japanese baking can seem a lot more complicated than our traditional baking at first - it does require patience and technique, and some specialist ingredients. However, the results are well worth the effort, and once you master it, you'll be whipping it up every night!
You Will Need
- 300g Cream Cheese
- 50g Softened Butter
- 3 Large Eggs
- 75g Caster Sugar
- 11g Corn Starch
- 150ml Milk
- This cheesecake is cooked in the oven in a bain-marie, so the first thing to do is set that up - take a roasting tray which is deep enough to at least half cover your cake tin, and wider than it. Fill it with water and place in the oven. Heat the oven to 180C.
- Use a 20cm diameter cake tin. Line it with baking paper on the bottom and sides.
- Now start by separating the egg yolks from the egg whites.
- Here's the first unusual part - now we're going to place the egg whites in a plastic bowl and place them in the freezer. Leave them there until they just about start to freeze around the ages - watch carefully so they don't completely freeze.
- Meanwhile take 20g of your caster sugar and mix it well into the egg yolks. Add the corn starch to this mixture and whip up until fully combined.
- Heat the milk in the microwave until it is warm not boiling or hot, then pour part of it over the egg yolk mix. Combine.
- Now place the yolk mix in a saucepan and combine with the rest of the milk over a low heat - simmer only and don't boil. Stir until the mixture thickens then remove from the heat.
- Now you can melt the butter in the microwave, which you then need to combine in a separate bowl with the cream cheese.
- Add the egg yolk mix to the cream cheese and mix until completely combined.
- Using an electric whisk, we are now going to whip the egg whites with the remaining 55g of sugar until they form soft peaks.
- We now need to add the meringue mix to the rest of the ingredients. Add about 1/4 of the meringue to the mix and stir well - this will loosen the mix. Now we can carefully fold in the rest of the meringue, being mindful not to beat out any of the air.
- Pour the mixture into the cake pan, and place the pan in the bain-marie in the oven.
- Cook for 15 minutes, then lower the temperature to 160c for a further 40 minutes. When the cheesecake has set and is slightly golden on top, it is ready.
- Cool the cheesecake before removing it from the tin - it benefits from a sit in the fridge and is great served with strawberries!