Thursday, 13 March 2014

just 3 ingredients

Baking cheesecake is my achilles heel.



My previous attempt at making a Japanese soufflé cotton cheesecake failed miserably. Once out of the oven, it sank, shrank and developed a 'waist'. The texture was more like kueh lapis than cottony soft soufflé! I have since stayed clear of making another such cheese kueh until I saw this lovely soufflé cheesecake baked by Ann of Anncoo Journal.



I was very inspired after reading her post as her soufflé cheesecake requires only 3 ingredients. Even if I were to make a blunder again, I won't feel so bad since I would at most scarify just 3 ingredients. The original recipe was taken from this video recipe by Ochikeron. The clear step by step instructions helps to boost my confidence level too.



Since I have all three ingredients...eggs, white chocolate chips and cream cheese in my fridge, I didn't procrastinate but to bake the cake first thing the next morning. All went well until the cake was removed from the oven. It started to sink, as I had expected. I thought it was a complete failure again until I unmoulded it from the pan. It didn't look too bad despite the wrinkles on the surface, at least the cake didn't crack or form an obvious waist.



The texture of the cake was soft and moist. It was lighter than the usual Japanese cheesecake as only half a block of cream cheese is used. I didn't find the cake overly sweet either. I actually tasted the white chocolate and cream cheese mixture before adding in the eggs. I skipped the lemon zest and juice and replaced it with vanilla extract. I would most probably add in lemon juice if the mixture was too sweet for my liking.



This cake was a huge hit among my children. They wiped out more than half the cake in one siting and could have finished the whole cake if I wasn't there to stop them. The recipe is certainly a keeper and most importantly it is another milestone in my baking journey. I hope I could bake a better soufflé cheesecake in my next attempt...one that doesn't sink or shrink. May the force be with me.




3 Ingredients Soufflé Japanese Cheesecake

Ingredients:

125g cream cheese, cut into cubes, soften at room temperature
120g white chocolate, break into pieces (I used Ghirardelli white chocolate chips)
3 extra large eggs, cold, separated (I used 4 eggs with 60g yolks, 140g whites)

1 teaspoon vanilla extract (optional)

Method:
  1. Line the base of a 7" round cake pan(fixed base) with parchment paper and grease the sides with butter, set aside. 
  2. Separate the eggs and leave egg whites to chill in the fridge until ready to use, this helps ensure a more stable meringue.   
  3. Fill a saucepan with water to about half full. Bring the water to a full boil. Turn off the heat. Place white chocolate chips in a large mixing bowl and set it over the saucepan (make sure the bowl is bigger than the sauce pan). Stir chocolate till smooth. 
  4. Add cream cheese and mix till smooth.
  5. Remove mixing bowl from the saucepan. Add the egg yolks, with a balloon whisk, whisk to combine. Add vanilla extract (if using), whisk to combine, set aside.
  6. In a clean, dry mixing bowl, beat egg whites with an electric mixer until the egg whites reaches the stiff peak stage. (Take care not to over beat the egg whites. Since there is no sugar added, it takes a very short time to reach the stiff peak stage.)
  7. Add the beaten egg whites into the cream cheese mixture in 3 separate additions, each time fold with a spatula (I used a balloon whisk) until just blended.
  8. Pour batter into the prepared pan. Tap the pan lightly on a table top to get rid of any trapped air bubbles in the batter.
  9. Place cake pan in a baking tray. Fill the baking tray with some hot water. 
  10. Place on lower rack of the oven and bake at 170 degC for 15mins. Lower the temperature to 160 degC and bake for another 15 minutes. Turn off the oven temperature and leave the cake inside the oven for another 15 minutes.
  11. Remove cake pan from oven and leave the cake to cool before unmolding. Refrigerate for about 2 to 3 hours. Dust with icing sugar if desired.
Recipe source: from Anncoo Journal and this video by ochikeron.

44 comments:

  1. Bravo! Your cake turned out beautifully. Love the golden colour. I must take this challenge too!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Phong Hong, I have been following your posts on your quest for the perfect cotton soft cheesecake. Look forward to reading your baking challenges :)

      Delete
  2. 赞啊,才三种材料就有那样美味的蛋糕
    我要学起来:)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, 才三种材料, 失败了不会那么心疼 ;)

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  3. Loved d simplicity n texture of this cake bkmarked it

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  4. Looks good HHB. I've not baked a soft cheese cake for a long time. This recipe looks achievable. I shall try, thanks for sharing!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jane, Do give this a try, it is much more straight forward than the other usual japanese cotton soft cheesecake.

      Delete
  5. Hi HBB, Thumbs up for your cheesecake. Looks pretty indeed. This is my family favourite cheesecake.
    Thank you for the link.:)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ann, thanks for the encouraging word, mine cannot compare to yours! I have lots to learn from you. Thanks for sharing the recipe!

      Delete
  6. Can we use dark/bittersweet chocolate for this cheesecake?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think should be possible, but the cake may not be as sweet especially if you use dark chocolate with high cocoa content.

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    2. There is no sugar in this recipe. How it tastes without the sugar?

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    3. The white chocolates is sweet, so the sweetness is just right.

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  7. The cake looks amazing! I also have her recipe saved to make one day~ Hope mine looks as good as yours.. because I've had a few fails too =__=

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hope you can give this a try. It gives me the boost to try other japanese cheesecake. 加油!

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  8. Hi HHB, lovely cake which I would like to bake. Thanks for sharing.

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    Replies
    1. Kimmy, I look forward to hear about your bake :)

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  9. 我也bake过这蛋糕。但我的shrink到蛮多。有什么秘诀?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 我的也缩。没有秘诀,就只是跟着食谱和参考视频的做法。不过注意因为没有加糖, 蛋白容易打发过度,如果蛋白不够稳定,蛋糕烤后会缩。

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  10. Your cheesecake looks beautiful! I have to give this a try soon.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Angie, thanks for your encouraging words :):)

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  11. Well done HHB! The golden colour cheesecake is so beautiful.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for your kind words, there's still lots of room to improve my baking skills!

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  12. Looks so yummy and easy too..will certainly try this one..I love your blog very much..following it from quite few days and love it..

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for reading my blog and taking time to leave your comments :)

      Delete
  13. Oh this looks so yummy!!! And looks so simple too compared to other Japanese cheesecake recipes.

    I would like to ask - can I just place a tray of water next to the pan (side by side) instead of inside it?

    Can't wait to try this recipe! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Gernaine, I would advise to follow the instructions of baking in the tray of hot water. Besides creating steam, I believe the hot water also helps to prevent the cake from getting cooked too quickly (which may cause the cake to crack). Do use a fixed base round pan, if using a removable base pan, you need to wrap the pan with 3 layers of foil to prevent water condensation at the bottom of the cake. Hope this helps.

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  14. How can we prevent the cake from sinking? I failed once following ochikeron's recipe (turn out uncooked). I'm trying a second time now, hope it will turn out like yours!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, did you beat the egg whites to the correct stage? Did you over beat it? What about the folding of the whites to the yolk batter? You could have deflated the batter as a result your cake didnt rise upon baking.

      Delete
  15. I tried the recipe again but still failed. My cake is too thin, and v soft on the inside. Can I check with you, do you mean freezing the cake when you mention refrigerate? Pls help thanks!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, your cake is probably not cooked? Did you pre heat your oven?
      No, please do not freeze the cake, leave it to chill in the fridge not in the freezer.

      Delete
  16. Hi, I made my 1st try last week after watching Ochikeron's site and it looked good but the base was a bit dense, like uncooked. It tasted good though, melt in the mouth. Right? 2nd attempt was bad, collapsed with hour glass shape, not sure was it because my tray was close on top rack, maybe over baking.
    Will try again tomorrow, hope it turns out well, this time place at lower rack, thanks for the direction.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The base was dense? it could be due to water condensation...
      All the best for your next attempt, looking forward to hearing good news from you :):)

      Delete
  17. My cake was not as tall as I don't hv a 7" pan, I used an 8" pan. I noticed the cake had many bubbles the monent I added the whites. The texture was not light, not sure was it because I put in the fridge for more than 3hrs. Acceptable taste though...will try again.

    ReplyDelete
  18. hi happy home baking,
    may i ask, how is ur current bosch oven u mentioned you decided to buy? pls let me know how the elctronic timer is working.. I am deciding to get this or the electrolux basic oven.. and the only draw back is the electronic timer.. im old school i like mechanical knobs.
    I really need an answer by tomorrow.. lol.. as i need to decide by then to let me contractor know.

    Hope to hear from you too.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You may like to refer to the last few comments on this post for the most recent review of my oven:
      http://happyhomebaking.blogspot.sg/2010/11/is-it-b-b-or.html

      It's been more than 3 yrs, so far I have no problem with the electronic timer, in fact I find it very useful as I can cancel or reset the timer easily. Hope this helps and my congrats for getting a new oven :)

      Delete
  19. hi, this recipe tastes very good but I tried baking 3 times, with different technique, but it sank badly and detached from the sides with a waist. is there something else I can do? I followed the recipe and video religiously....

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I suspect the cake sank because of incorrect beating of the egg whites. How does your beaten egg whites look like? if it appears grainy, then you could have over beaten the whites. You may want to refer to the slides under point 7 on this site (http://www.decodingdelicious.com/egg-foams/) which gives a very detailed explanation on beating egg whites. Hope this helps to nail down what went wrong...

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    2. will check it out! thanks for yr advice!

      Delete
  20. hi HHB, I think you hit the nail on the head. the link was very useful and it turned out better this time. thanks a lot! :)

    ReplyDelete
  21. hi Happy Homebaker,

    i baked this cake twice. the first time, the cake shrink and sank miserably. 2nd attempt, the cake rose beautifully inside the oven. but after leaving it in the oven for the 15mins after baking, it sank :( the bottom is a bit dense and thick too, but the upper part is fluffy and soft. May I ask if its the water in the baking tray that cause the bottom of the cake to be dense and thick? is there any way to work around it? Is it a must to add water to the baking tray?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, did you use a pan with a removable base or a fixed one? If it is removable base, maybe it is due to condensation of water that causes the bottom of the cake to become wet, but it shouldn't cause it to be thick and dense. I suspect it is due to the folding of the whites to the yolk batter...the folding is not done probably and some yolk batter (not mixed thoroughly) sank to the bottom as a result the top is fluffy and bottom is dense. The cake will also sink if the whites are not beaten to the correct stage, either under or over beat, as a result the cake cannot hold its structure and sank. You may want to refer to this site (http://www.decodingdelicious.com/egg-foams/) for details on the beating of the egg whites. The cake has to be baked in a water-bath...so that the cake will not be heated up too fast, expand too quickly which will cause the cake to crack. Hope this helps and good luck on your next attempt :)

      Delete
  22. Hi. I tried this recipe earlier. The cake didnt rise. Do you know why? Also, how would i know that the egg whites are beaten to stiff peals?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Did you beat the egg whites to the correct stage? What about folding of the whites to the cream cheese mixture,, did you deflate the batter? Was the finished batter thin and runny? If yes, you could have deflated the batter as a result the cake didn't rise.
      You may want to refer to the slides under point 7 on this site (http://www.decodingdelicious.com/egg-foams/) which gives a very detailed explanation on beating egg whites. Hope this helps.

      Delete