After eating some yummy cheesecake at Pearl Cafe I decided to do some cheesecake baking of my own. Pears have just come in season so what better way to celebrate than with cake. This turned out to be a really nice cake. It wasn’t too dense but I really should have had more pear. The base was nice but I wanted it more crunchy, so maybe I’ll use less butter next time.
This receipe was adapted from Stephanie Alexander’s Best Cheesecake Ever receipe on www.cuisine.com.au
100g butter (melted)
300g butternut snap cookies
500g cream cheese, at room temperature
200g caster sugar
1 tbsp cornflour
2 tbsp lemon juice (I think that the cake could have been improved by substituing half of the lemon juice with pear juice)
few drops of vanilla extract to taste
pinch of salt
2 cups sour cream
2 pears (I Used only 2 pears for this receipe but I recommend increasing this to at least 3)
Preheat oven to 180ºC.
Brush the base and sides of a 22cm x 6cm deep springform tin with a little of the melted butter. Remove the base from the tin.
Cut a round of baking paper to fit the base of the tin, brush the paper with a little butter and set aside.
Tear off an 80cm sheet of foil and double it over so it measures 40cm in length. Lay the foil over the base of the tin, then put the buttered round of paper on top. Sit the springform tin over the base and lock the sides into place, leaving excess foil outside the tin. Draw up the excess foil around the tin and fold the top out of the way. You now have a watertight container.
Crush the biscuits in a food processor. Add the remaining butter and process. Press the crumb mixture into the base of the tin, tapping firmly with the base of a glass tumbler or similar as you go. I pressed some of the crumb mixture into the sides but later I realised that I had left the base quite thin. Next time I will put all the mixture in the bottom for a thicker base.
Beat the cream cheese and sugar in an electric mixer until smooth.
Beat in the cornflour, then add the eggs, 1 at a time, beating each time just until smooth.
Add the lemon juice, vanilla and salt.
Add the sour cream and beat briefly to combine.
Peel the pears then halve and remove core. Slice into small slices.
Pour the batter into the tin to fill about 1/3 of the way up. Add 1/3 of the pears.
Add another third of the batter and again top with pears.
Pour the remaining batter and top with the last of the pears.
Stand the tin in a large baking dish. Pour boiling water into the dish to come halfway up the sides of the tin.
Bake for 50 minutes, then turn off the oven but do not open the door for a further hour.
Lift the tin from the water bath and flatten the foil away from the sides just in case there is any water trapped inside. I used paper towel to soak up some of the excess water.
Allow to cool completely in the tin on a wire rack and then refrigerate for several hours or overnight before serving.