Monday, July 27, 2009

Junior's White Chocolate Strawberry Cheesecake

This is the cake I made for my birthday on July 21. The first day it was yummy but the next day and then day after it was even better as the cake settled and 'ripened'. If you don't have the book already and you like cheesecake, go get the "Junior's Cheesecake Cookbook". I'm submitting this post to Brenda's Canadian Kitchen for Cookbook Sundays where the only requirement is to make something from a cookbook you own. I highly recommend joining as it gives you a little more push to get cooking from the cookbooks on your shelf.

Everything I've made from this Junior's cookbook has been fabulous. They're famous for a reason! With the heat and humidity it was a real challenge making white chocolate curls and decorating before the whipped cream melted. All in all I'm loving the heat though since in general I'm so cold. The air conditioning at work is so strong I keep a wooly scarf at my desk and a fleece blanket! They make fun of me for it but I would freeze to death without them, lol.

My birthday gifts were all baking-related (of course). I got more stuff to feed my obsession. I don't know how/when I will be able to bake my way through the mountains of new recipes I have collected but I still can't stop collecting. I got:

  • Canadian Living Baking Book
  • King Arthur Flour's Baking Companion
  • Wilton Cake Decorating Revolving Turntable
  • America's Test Kitchen Family Cookbook
  • Pizza stone and pizza peel

    Junior's White Chocolate Strawberry Cheesecake
    Adapted from Junior's Cheesecake Cookbook

    one 9" Graham cracker crust

    three 8-ounce packages cream cheese (full fat)
    1 1/3 cups sugar
    2 tablespoons cornstarch
    1 tablespoon vanilla extract
    2 extra-large eggs
    6 oz. white chocolate, melted & cooled
    1/2 cup whipping cream

    2 cups fresh strawberries plus more for garnish
    1 tbsp cornstarch
    1/4 cup sugar

    1. Prepare the strawberry swirl by pureeing the strawberries in a food processor or blender and then mixing in the sugar and cornstarch. Let stand to thicken.

    2. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Put one 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, scraping down the bowl several times. Blend in the remaining cream cheese, one package at a time, scraping down the bowl after each one. Increase the mixer speed to medium and beat in the remaining 1 cup sugar, then the vanilla. Blend in the eggs, one at a time, beating well after adding each one. Beat in the whipping cream just until completely blended. Fold in melted and cooled white chocolate. Don't overmix!
    3. Pour the cheese mixture over the prepared graham cracker crust. Using a teaspoon, drop the strawberry mixture on top of the cheese batter, pushing it down slightly as you go. Using a thin, pointed knife, cut through the batter a few times in a swirling “figure 8” design, just until strawberry swirls appear.
    4. Place the cake (with the base wrapped in foil) in a large shallow pan containing hot water that comes about 1 inch up the sides of the springform. Bake until the edges are light golden brown and the top of the cake is golden with deep red swirls, about 1 hour and 15 minutes. Remove the cake from the water bath, transfer to a wire rack, and let cool for 2 hours (just walk away—don’t move it). Leave the cake in the pan, cover loosely with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until completely cold, at least 4 hours or preferably overnight.
    5. To serve, release and remove the sides of the springform, leaving the cake on the bottom of the pan. Place on a cake plate and garnish with whipped cream, strawberries and white chocolate curls. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Slice with a sharp straight-edge knife, not a serrated one. Cover leftover cake and refrigerate for up to a week or freeze up to 1 month.


    Helene said...

    This looks so good, I love cheesecakes. I'll see if I can find this cookbook.

    Heidi said...

    I have the Junior Book too! I have never make anything from it yet but keep looking at it. When I went to New York a couple of months ago, I ate 3 pieces of cheesecake from Juniors restaurant and was very impressed. The photo of your cheesecake looks just as good as theirs! Great job putting it together. Your chocolate marshmallow cookies look yummy also.

    Rebecca said...

    Just made this cheesecake and it was amazing! Thanks for the recipe!

    Brenda said...

    Happy belated birthday Tia! I think this is the best-looking cheesecake I've ever seen. Does it every look good. You did a fantastic job! Thank you for participating in Cookbook Sundays!