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Old 01-03-2012, 05:24 PM   #1
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Smile How to keep cheesecake from cracking

I recently used a new recipe to make a low fat cheesecake. I followed it exactly. It said to put a roaster pan in the oven with it 1/3 full with water (I used a casserole dish). Then when it was finished cooking the recipe said to turn the oven off and leave it in the oven for an hour. I did all of this and it still had a large crack on the top. It did taste great. But I just can't solve the mystery of the cracking cheesecakes. I made a regular cheesecake a few years back using another recipe and it also cracked. What is the answer?
Thanks!!

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Old 01-03-2012, 05:50 PM   #2
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I cooked the cheese cake I made for Christmas in a bain marie and it turned out perfectly. I think the moisture is what eliminated any cracking.

Here's the blurb about they why and how of doing so:


Quote:
To perfectly bake a cheesecake, I have come to insist on a low oven temperature and baking the dessert in a bain marie.

A word about baking a cheesecake in a bain marie before starting the recipe. A bain marie is simply a water bath that buffers the direct heat from the sides and bottom of the baking pan to more evenly bake the cheesecake from the sides to the center.

I bake my cheesecakes in a 9 or 10 inch spring form pan that has the bottom and sides wrapped in multiple layers of wide heavy duty aluminum foil which forms a sort of boat that the cheesecake pan sits in. The roll of aluminum foil that I use is about 16 inches wide. I use at least 4 layers of foil to make sure that no water leaks in and ruins the crust of my cheesecake. The aluminum foil wrapped pan is then placed inside a larger baking pan; I use a 12 inch cake pan. Boiling water is then poured into the larger pan filling it from 1/2 to 2/3 of the way to the top.

I find it best to pour the boiling water into the pan after it is placed on the rack in the oven as you are less likely to splash water onto the cheesecake or inside the aluminum foil. I reuse the aluminum foil for several future cheesecakes, adding a couple of layers to it each time just to be safe..
Grease bottom but not sides of a 9 or 10 inch spring form pan. I like to line the bottom with parchment paper for easy removal from the pan.
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Old 01-03-2012, 05:56 PM   #3
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Don't over cook it.....period.
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Old 01-03-2012, 07:23 PM   #4
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It was overcooked, even a water bath can keep this from happening eventually.

Remove from the oven when the center jiggles like Jello, you don't want it to swish around, but a loose jiggle is what you are looking for.

If you don't mind a small hole in your cheesecake, test with a thermometer, 160 is the ideal temperature to tell if it is ready to pull from the oven, once over 160 the eggs coagulate and create a dryer more cottage cheese type texture, instead of a creamy texture.

If you suspect that your oven runs hot, turn it down, low and slow is perfect for cheesecakes.

I never turn off the oven and leave cheesecake in there, it doesn't seem like a necessary step, once it's done it is done, it has a chance of overcooking in the oven. I do leave the cheesecake sitting in the waterbath, in the roaster outside of the oven for about 30 minutes while the filling sets.

I wrap my springform pan in 2 layers of the wide, heavy duty foil, and place the wrapped pan filled with batter into a large roaster, and add the boiling water being careful not to let any water get in between the foil and the pan, I place this into the oven to bake.
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Old 01-03-2012, 08:05 PM   #5
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Add 3 Tbsp of flour to the batter.
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Old 01-03-2012, 08:29 PM   #6
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Thanks for all of the help. It sounds like it should be in the water instead of above it on another rack like my recipe called for. I will also try the thermometer. I am a stickler (sp) for preciseness. I will try another one sometime. I will have to give most of it away. I love to bake but I am a diabetic ( not on medication anymore, Yay!!) and trying to lose weight so I try not to keep too much in the house. Cheesecake is probably my favorite dessert and I would like to master it. It's sort of bad for my family. I love to bake but don't really like to cook. hahaha
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Old 01-03-2012, 08:58 PM   #7
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To keep my weight under control, and still fulfill my need to bake, I try to do it when people are coming over, that way I am not tempted with a bunch of leftovers!
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Old 01-03-2012, 09:25 PM   #8
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Also, run a sharp knife around the edge of the cake as soon as you remove it from the oven. This will loosen it, so it doesn't pull and contract when cooling, which can cause cracking.
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Old 01-24-2012, 10:24 AM   #9
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Using the "bake" setting in your oven rather than the "convection" setting might also help, because the air blowing around in a convection oven can sometimes dry out the top of the cheesecake, which can lead to cracking as the cheesecake cools and settles.
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Old 01-24-2012, 11:11 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncle Bob View Post
Don't over cook it.....period.
I think this is probably the right solution. Excellent Bob ;-)
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