ANYONE who has visited New York City will agree that Juniorís makes the best cheesecake in the world, writes MIKE COHEN.
And with Shavuot approaching, what better time to try to recreate a Juniorís cheesecake at home.
The restaurant was founded by Harry Rosen in 1950 in Brooklyn. The family had run a diner in that location under a different name from 1929, but it was renamed Juniorís after Rosenís two sons, Walter and Marvin.
Rosen worked with master baker Eigel Peterson to create its signature cheesecake.
What sets Juniorís apart from other cheesecakes is the layer of sponge cake underneath the topping.
But this means it requires a lot of work as you are essentially making two cakes ó but you wonít be disappointed with the results.
Juniorís cheesecakes ó which are all kosher ó only use Philadelphia cream cheese.
Sponge Cake Layer
Cream Cheese Filling
- Ĺ cup cake flour, sifted
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 pinch of salt
- 3 large eggs, separated
- One-third cup and 2 tablespoons granulated sugar, divided
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 drops lemon extract
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- ľ teaspoon cream of tartar
- 8 ounces cream cheese
- 1.6 cups granulated sugar
- ľ cup cornflour
- 1 tablespoons vanilla extract
- 2 large eggs
- ĺ cups double cream
For the sponge cake, preheat the oven to 350F. Generously grease a 9-inch spring-form pan with oil or butter.
Sift together the cake flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. Set aside.
In a large bowl, beat the egg yolks with an electric mixer at high speed for 3 minutes. Gradually add one third cup of sugar and beat for 5 more minutes, or until mixture forms into thick, pale yellow ribbons. Beat in vanilla and lemon extracts.
Pour the dry ingredients over the egg mixture and whisk manually until smooth. Stir in the melted butter until well-combined.
In a clean, dry medium bowl, beat the egg whites with the cream of tartar on high speed until frothy. While beating, gradually add the remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar. Continue until stiff peaks form. The egg whites should be glossy and should form a stiff tip when you lift the beaters. The tip should be able to hold its shape.
Add about a third of the egg whites into the cake batter and mix with a spatula. Gently mix in the rest of the egg whites until combined. Itís okay if a few specks of egg whites remain.
Spoon the cake batter into the greased pan. Bake for 10 minutes, or just until the centre springs back when pressed lightly. Let cake cool in the pan on a wire rack.
Meanwhile, prepare the cream cheese filling. Reduce the oven heat to 300 degrees Fahrenheit.
In a large bowl, add 8 ounces of cream cheese, a third cup of sugar, and cornflour. Beat with an electric mixer on low speed for 3 minutes, or until the mixture is creamy. Beat in the rest of the cream cheese.
Beat in the remaining 1.3 cups of sugar until combined. Stir in the vanilla extract.
Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after every addition. Gently mix in the double cream just until well-blended, careful not to overmix the batter.
Spoon the cream cheese filling over the cooled sponge cake.
Place the cake pan in a large shallow pan. Fill the large pan with hot water to a depth of an inch up the sides of the cake pan.
Bake the cheesecake for 1 hour. The centre should barely wobble when you shake the pan.
Let the cake cool on a wire rack for an hour. Cover the pan with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight.
Detach the outer ring of the spring-form pan. Transfer the cake onto a serving plate, either with or without the bottom of the cake pan.
To make cake flour, place a cup of plain flour in a bowl. Take out 4 teaspoons and replace them with cornflour. Sift the mixture twice.
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