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Old 10-05-2004, 05:42 PM   #1
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UH..........do you think my cheesecake is ok? Need advice!

Well, I couldn't wait until Friday (as planned) to make my three layered (plain, pumpkin, chocoalte) cheesecake. everything went smoothly. this was the first time i made cheesecake using a water bath. the other recipes didn't call for making one. everything looked fine while baking and while it cooled in the oven after I turned the oven off.

I just took it out of the oven and the roasting pan. When I removed the foil, there was a small amt of water in the bottom of the foil. Is it just from the steam? The foil was higher up on the pan than the water. I had to use two overlapping pieces of foil, so perhaps some water got in. the cake doesn't look overly water logged. It's perfectly smooth on top. no cracks.

Any advice? Did I ruin it?

Thanks.

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Old 10-05-2004, 06:43 PM   #2
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Hi runninduo,
I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but yes, the water probably leaked in through the seams. I learned that the hard way the first time I used a water bath. It was for a David Lebovitz flourless chocolate cake - lots of water leaked in and I had to throw it out. The best foil to use is the heavy duty type, which is wider, and can be wrapped around the pan in one layer, hence leaving no seams where the water can leak in.
Your cheesecake may still be okay, depending on how much water actually leaked in. Unfortunately, you may not be able to test the results until after chilling, and then cutting a slice. I hope it works out for you!!! Let me know what happens.
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Old 10-05-2004, 07:13 PM   #3
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Even though I was supposed to chill the cheesecake b/f I took the sides off, once it cooled, I took the sides off to see what the damage was. It looks like the crust got pretty soggy. It was 3 layers of cheesecake and the top two look ok, the bottom layer is a bit mushy. It was pretty easy to make so I"ll try it again. I'll put it in the fridge to see what happens. I'm not gonna bother with the chocolate fudge topping.

Well, at least I know i'm not the only one this has happened to.

Hey, what would have happened if i just baked it without the water bath?

It looks so pretty too! The layers came out all nice and even.

Thanks for breaking it to me gently!
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Old 10-05-2004, 07:30 PM   #4
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It's too bad about the crust and bottom layer. The bottom layer may be okay after chilling, although the crust may still be soggy. Make sure you chill the cheesecake a good 24 hours before slicing - I chill very high/dense cheesecakes, such as a NY Cheesecake, for about 48 hours. The texture firms up better.
As far as not using a waterbath, I rarely use one. I place a shallow pan of water on the rack directly under where the cheesecake is sitting (I usually bake on the lower middle rack, so I put the pan of water on the bottom rack). This is not 100% guaranteed as a waterbath is, but it's safer! Then as soon as the cheesecake comes out of the oven, I run a sharp knife around the edges - this prevents cracking as it cools off. Some people leave the cheesecake in the oven when done, turn off the oven, and then leave the door slightly ajar. I've never tried this method.
If you do use a waterbath again, get yourself some heavy duty foil. This way you can wrap the pan in ONE layer!!!
Let me know your results after the cheesecake is chilled.
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Old 10-05-2004, 07:42 PM   #5
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I'll try the pan of water on a different rack. I suppose the water keeps the oven moist, right? The top came out beautifully.....no cracks. Got a small bit of "smudging" going around the edges from running the knife around the cake.......it's nothing that the topping wouldn't/couldn't cover.

I actually think that the cake will be ok........except for the crust.

One more question................the water seeping in doesn't make it inedible from a "health" standpoint. Nothing about it would "contaminate" (for lack of a better word) the cake, would it?

The ingredients in this cake are almost identical to other cakes i've made without a water bath, so I can just look at the cooking instructions to use as guidelines.

Thanks again for all your help!
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Old 10-05-2004, 07:43 PM   #6
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I never use a water bath, and leave the cheesecake in the oven for about an hour after baking, with the door ajar (stick a wooden spoon in the door).
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Old 10-05-2004, 07:44 PM   #7
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mud.......

so you don't use a water bath, even if the recipes calls for one? are there any alterations you need to make to oven temp or baking time?

thanks.

I'm thinking that maybe the cake will be ok in the end!!!
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Old 10-05-2004, 07:56 PM   #8
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I'm a one[trick pony on cheesecake. I've only made one kind, and I love it so much I don't bother with others (see Killer Cheesecake thread elswhere under this topic).

From the little I've studied it, cracks in cheescakes often occur because of inadequate mixing beforehand. I'm no expert, tho.

Water baths are more approp for custards or flan, in my opinion.
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Old 10-05-2004, 11:11 PM   #9
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hmmmmmmmm.........the cheesecake has been in the fridge for about four hours now, and the pie is setting up beautifully. i must say, the top of the cake came out the best it ever has (due to the water bath????). Even the crust is firming up a bit.

Maybe it's just the edges that got soggy and the center of the crust will be ok? I'll wait out the 24 hrs b/f cutting a piece!

Thanks again for all the tips.

Mud.......Killer is next on my list! It's already printed and ready to go!
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Old 10-06-2004, 06:44 AM   #10
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runninduo, sounds like yours is gonna be jes' fine. let us know.
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