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Monday, September 17, 2007

Ricotta Cheesecake

This recipe is from Martha Stewart's Baking Handbook. It's a very simple cheesecake to put together and the flavor is very nice. It tastes a lot like a lemon custard or even a lemon meringue, but either way it is good and simple. My cake turned out just like the picture in the Martha's book. Pureeing the ricotta gives it a very silky and smooth texture, the batter turns out very nice. Instead of using regular sugar for the pan, I used raw sugar to give it a little crunch and it worked nicely.

Ricotta Cheesecake

Unsalted butter, room temperature, for pan
3/4 cup sugar, plus more for pan
1 1/2 lbs. fresh whole milk ricotta cheese, pureed in food processor until smooth
6 large eggs, separated
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
finely grated zest of 2 lemons
1/4 tsp. salt

Preheat oven to 375. Generously butter and sugar a 9-inch springform pan. In a large bowl, whisk together the ricotta, egg yolks, flour, 6 tablespoons sugar, zest and salt until combined, set aside.
Place the egg whites in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment; beat on low speed until foamy. With the mixer on high, gradually add the remaining 6 tablespoons of sugar, beating until stiff and glossy, 3 to 4 minutes.
Using a rubber spatula, fold a third of the egg-white mixture into the ricotta mixture until combined. Gently fold the remaining egg white mixture until just combined. Pour into pan and bake until center is firm and the top a deep golden brown, about 1 hour.
Transfer to a wire rack and cool ten minutes. Place another wire rack on top and invert cake to rack to remove from pan. Reinvert cake and cool completely, top side up. The cheesecake is best eaten the day it is baked but can be refrigerated, covered loosely with plastic wrap, for up to 3 days. Let sit at room temperature for 20 minutes prior to serving.

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