If you've been dreaming of a white Christmas, this might
help! It's a crustless, white chocolate-lemon cheesecake,
not too sweet, very smooth, and with an optional blueberry
topping. This cheesecake will keep in the refrigerator
for five days or so, if tightly covered, and it freezes
well. You MUST use excellent-quality white chocolate for
this, and it must chill at least overnight before you
eat it. Other possibilities for topping your cheesecake:
cranberry sauce or compote (preferably homemade and with
a bit of orange rind added), fresh fruit, or a good chocolate
sauce. Serve with lightly sweetened whipped cream, and
you're all set.
bags (12 ozs. each) individually quick-frozen blueberries
(without sugar added)
cup granulated sugar
Tbsp. plus 2 tsp. fresh-squeezed lemon juice
ozs. best-quality white chocolate, finely chopped
cup heavy cream
ozs. (3-8 oz. packages plus 1-3 oz. package) cream cheese,
cup granulated sugar
egg whites, from eggs graded "large"
cup sour cream
rind of 1-2 large lemons (no white pith)
not thaw berries. Combine all ingredients in heavy-bottomed,
nonreactive 2-quart pot. Place over medium-high heat. Stir
frequently to dissolve sugar, then stir occasionally until
mixture comes to a boil. Boil 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Remove from heat. Cool, then chill until needed.
a round of corrugated cardboard so that it fits into the
bottom of an assembled 9" diameter by 3" tall springform
pan (preferably nonstick, and the pan MUST be 3" tall).
Take two pieces of regular aluminum foil, each about 18"
long, and place them on a flat surface in an "X" pattern.
Place the cardboard circle in the middle of the "X"; fold
the foil in over the cardboard, flattening as much as possible
on the bottom of the cardboard round. The result should
be a foil-covered cardboard circle, with one surface smooth.
Place this, smooth side up, into the bottom of your springform
pan. (Note that this foil-covered disc is optional, but
using it means you'll have the bottom of your springform
pan free, and you won't accidentally cut the pan bottom
when you're slicing the cheesecake.) Now, tear off two pieces
of heavy-duty aluminum foil, each about 20" long. Again
place the foil sheets in an "X" pattern, then place the
assembled pan in the middle of the "X". Fold the foil up
and around the pan sides, trimming away any excess. You
want the outside of the pan covered in foil, right up to
the edge. With softened butter, butter the sides of the
pan ONLY (do this even if the pan is nonstick, and you'll
butter the inside sides of the pan, not the foil-covered
outside). Have ready a pan that is of larger dimensions
but shallower than your springform; the springform must
be able to fit inside this larger pan. If the larger pan
is aluminum, sprinkle about a teaspoon of cream of tartar
into it to prevent discoloration. Have ready a pot of simmering
water, enough to fill the larger, shallower pan to a depth
of about 1". Set the prepared springform pan and the larger,
shallower pan aside.
Adjust rack to center of oven. Preheat oven to 400 degrees
F. In medium heatproof bowl, combine chopped white chocolate
and heavy cream. Place over hot water on low heat (water
should not touch bottom of bowl). Stir very frequently until
melted and smooth (a whisk may be helpful). Remove from
heat and hot water. Note that white chocolate can be stubborn
about melting smoothly; if yours is this way, remove from
heat and hot water when mostly melted. Turn into food processor
fitted with steel blade; process at high speed just until
smooth. Scrape into a clean bowl; allow to stand at room
temperature until needed, whisking occasionally.
In large bowl of electric mixer, combine softened cream
cheese, sugar, flour, and salt. Beat at medium speed just
until perfectly smooth; you don't want a lot of air in this
batter. Make sure to scrape bowl and beater(s) often throughout
mixing process to ensure smoothness. At a low speed, gradually
add egg whites, beating after each addition just until well-mixed.
Stir or whisk white chocolate mixture (which may still be
warm) briefly. Still beating at a low speed, add to cream
cheese mixture, beating until smooth. Beat in sour cream.
Remove from mixer. With large spatula, stir in vanilla and
grated lemon rind. Pour batter over large spatula into prepared
springform pan. If there are any obvious air bubbles, prick
with toothpick or knife point.
Place larger, shallower pan on oven rack. Pour in enough
simmering water to make a thin covering on pan bottom. Carefully
place springform pan in center of larger pan so that it
does not touch any of the sides. CAREFULLY add more simmering
water to a depth of about 1"; too much water will slow the
baking process. Don't get any water into the cheesecake
batter. Close oven door.
8 minutes at 400 degrees F. Reduce oven temperature to 275
degrees F; bake 1 hour and 10 minutes to 1 hour and 20 minutes
longer. Check water level in larger pan after about 50 minutes;
if necessary, add more simmering water to larger pan to
maintain 1" depth. Cheesecake will rise when baking (it
may even be slightly above the edge of the pan)--OK. Center
of cheesecake will not seem done at end of baking time;
only a narrow band of batter around the outside of the pan
will seem set. CAREFULLY remove springform pan from larger
pan of water and the oven--it will be hot, wet, and slippery.
Place springform on cooling rack. Gently tear and cut foil
from outside of springform (don't worry about the foil on
the outside bottom, and don't disturb the cheesecake too
Cool on rack at room temperature, out of drafts, for about
2-1/2 hours; you should be able to hold your hand on the
pan bottom at that point, though it will still be warm.
Gently loosen cheesecake from pan sides, then remove sides
of springform pan from cheesecake (leave the bottom of the
pan in place till the cheesecake is cold). Refrigerate cheesecake
till cold, then gently loosen and remove pan bottom, leaving
foil-covered disc as a base for cheesecake. To wrap, place
plain paper towel on top of cold cheesecake, then wrap tightly
in plastic wrap (paper towel will absorb any condensation).
Chill at least overnight before serving.
To cut, use large, sharp, heavy knife. Run knife blade under
hot water and shake off (do not dry) before making every
cut or every other cut. Store cheesecake in refrigerator.
Serve with Blueberry Sauce and lightly sweetened whipped
cream or as desired.
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