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Cheesecake -New York Style

exotik1 Apr 6, 2010 10:13 PM

I'd like to make a creamy New York style cheesecake that is not too tangy. I'd like it to taste smooth vanilla, like "La Rocca" brand cheesecake that u can buy at metro. Does anyone have any receipes that they've tried which are not tangy?

thank you kindly,
exotik1 :)

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  1. l
    laura321 RE: exotik1 Apr 7, 2010 12:28 AM

    My old standby for cheesecake is a recipe I found in Gourmet a while back, it's a classic New York cheesecake and I can't say I've ever tasted a better one:


    (I certainly wouldn't describe it as tangy, but then I don't really ever think of New York cheesecake as tangy).

    2 Replies
    1. re: laura321
      michele cindy RE: laura321 Apr 7, 2010 03:50 AM

      My dad makes a great creamy cheesecake that is very similar. The only changes (off the top of my head) would be to omit the zest and flour.

      1. re: michele cindy
        ChristinaMason RE: michele cindy Apr 7, 2010 04:45 AM

        The Germans put flour in their cheesecakes. I am not a fan of that style. Yuck.

    2. bushwickgirl RE: exotik1 Apr 7, 2010 05:34 AM

      The epicurious recipe, posted upthread, looks suspiously like smittenkitchen's version. Now, that's a classic NY cheesecake.

      BTW, I never think of NY cheesecake as tangy. Big, tall, firm, topped with fruit, perfectly sweet, but definitely not tangy, no sour cream, very little flour:

      Includes nice photos.

      26 Replies
      1. re: bushwickgirl
        roxlet RE: bushwickgirl Apr 7, 2010 07:57 AM

        The Smitten Kitchen one, which hit my inbox this morning, looks like a really nice recipe, but I am partial to vanilla bean in my NY cheesecake, not lemon and orange rind.

        1. re: roxlet
          bushwickgirl RE: roxlet Apr 7, 2010 08:13 AM

          Hit my inbox too, how timely for this thread.

          Go for it, I doubt whether you'll miss the zest, and the vanilla bean (I assume you're using the paste?) will be a very nice alternative to any citrus. I find the 1/2 tsp of vanilla in her recipe is not nearly enough vanilla flavor for my taste.

          1. re: bushwickgirl
            roxlet RE: bushwickgirl Apr 8, 2010 05:27 AM

            I am extremely partial to another Gourmet cheesecake called Katish's Cheesecake. They claim that it is their all-time most requested cheesecake recipe. It's the one I usually make, and it calls for finely minced vanilla bean. When I am feeling truly profligate (and I have several extra beans on hand), I will sometimes scrape the seeds from an entire pod into the batter. It is super delicious. I have used the paste (from Trader Joe's) but I do find it to be a bit gloppy. I prefer either vanilla bean or vanilla extract. However, I am living in Cairo and all I have been able to find here is Philadelphia whipped cream cheese. My one experiment baking a cheese cake with that wasn't entirely a success, so I will most likely hold out making another cheesecake until I return home. I'll bookmark this one though!

            1. re: roxlet
              buttertart RE: roxlet Apr 8, 2010 09:37 AM

              Hi roxlet, did you see coll's recipe specifically for whipped cream cheese below? You're in!

              1. re: buttertart
                roxlet RE: buttertart Apr 8, 2010 12:58 PM

                Oooh! No I didn't! Thanks for pointing it out!

                1. re: roxlet
                  buttertart RE: roxlet Apr 8, 2010 01:05 PM

                  Having been an expat myself (in Taipei), I know that no matter how much a place is a foodlover's dream (which it certainly is), sometimes you just have to have a taste of home.

                  1. re: buttertart
                    roxlet RE: buttertart Apr 9, 2010 12:37 AM

                    But Cairo, unfortunately, is decidedly NOT a foodlover's dream. By and large, the restaurants are extremely disappointing, and aside from some good street food items, not one can tell me what Egyptian food is. Most of the restaurants serve "Oriental" food, which is generic mid east food and usually not that good! And finding the ingredients you need is a real challenge. I had to bring my own vanilla because all I could find was the artificial stuff. i finally realized it was because vanilla has alcohol.

                    1. re: roxlet
                      buttertart RE: roxlet Apr 9, 2010 07:37 AM

                      Cairo sounds rather more difficult than Taipei. I hope there are other compensations!

                      1. re: buttertart
                        roxlet RE: buttertart Apr 9, 2010 07:51 AM

                        Squash, the sport not the vegetable, though they do have some delicious white zucchini!

        2. re: bushwickgirl
          laura321 RE: bushwickgirl Apr 7, 2010 12:18 PM

          I just checked out the smittenkitchen, and it does say at the top of the recipe "Adapted from Gourmet Magazine."

          Looks like an interesting site -- beautiful photos and good taste in cheesecake, I'm definitely going to try some of her recipes.

          1. re: laura321
            bushwickgirl RE: laura321 Apr 7, 2010 01:18 PM

            I linked it for the photos, knowing that it is an adapted recipe. What's adapted about it, I haven't looked closely enough to tell, but it's not the cheesecake batter. The crumb crust is worded a bit differently, that's all it takes to be an adaptation.

            Sign up for her email. Her photos are always great and her recipes and stories are fun, it's a nice, nice blog.

            Anyway, the cheesecake a great classic recipe, no matter what crust you use, no matter where it came from.

            1. re: bushwickgirl
              Caitlin McGrath RE: bushwickgirl Apr 7, 2010 02:39 PM

              What's adapted about her recipes is often nothing more than the wording, which, coupled with the proviso "adapted from" is enough to avoid copyright infringement. I often see people crediting her for recipes from cookbooks and magazines as if she originated them because they discovered the recipes via her blog - which is not to say she's making such claims.

              1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                bushwickgirl RE: Caitlin McGrath Apr 7, 2010 03:42 PM

                "often nothing more than the wording"

                Agreed, that's what I said. Change the wording and claim "adapted from" and your free to utilize and publish the recipe as you wish, for the most part. I do believe it's not her desire to have the recipes considered her own. I guess her readers don't always notice her noted recipe sources.

                As I wrote, I like her photography and her writings. I frequently see recipes on her blog I attribute to other cookbook authors, but it's nice to have them come to my inbox, rather than go through my cookbooks or search online.

          2. re: bushwickgirl
            goodhealthgourmet RE: bushwickgirl Jan 16, 2011 07:42 PM

            did you ever end up comparing the recipes, or have you just made the SK version?

            1. re: goodhealthgourmet
              bushwickgirl RE: goodhealthgourmet Jan 17, 2011 08:24 AM

              I have another recipe I prefer over SK and epicurious, it's a lemon cheesecake, made lighter by virtue of whipped egg whites folded in. Not NY style at all, but personal perference. I like the lighter texture and lemon aspect.

              When I get a craving for NY cheesecake, I send mrbushy over to Junior's for a slice, that fills the bill, and no entire cheesecake around for me to consume.

              1. re: bushwickgirl
                goodhealthgourmet RE: bushwickgirl Jan 17, 2011 09:03 AM

                i'm with you on the airier preference - i fold whipped egg whites into mine as well :) i was just curious about a head-to-head comparison of the 2 NY-Style recipes.

                i prefer S&S to Junior's...too bad you can't send mrbushy up to the Bronx when you have a craving ;)

                1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                  magiesmom RE: goodhealthgourmet Jan 17, 2011 09:07 AM

                  I like the whipped egg whites too and I use sour cream instead of all cream cheese; maybe that is the tanginess. I am a big fan of graham cracker crust too, though I use no added sugar. My recipe comes from the old Fanny Farmer cookbook.
                  I also don't use any topping.
                  We have an ice storm coming tomorrow, a perfect day for a cheesecake bake!

                  1. re: magiesmom
                    goodhealthgourmet RE: magiesmom Jan 17, 2011 09:57 AM

                    yes to the sour cream and the graham (or gingersnap) crust...although these days it's easier for me to use a nut meal crust rather than going to the trouble of baking GF graham crackers or snaps first!

                    1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                      magiesmom RE: goodhealthgourmet Jan 17, 2011 01:01 PM

                      That makes sense. I take a lot for granted, though I always try not to!

                      1. re: magiesmom
                        goodhealthgourmet RE: magiesmom Jan 17, 2011 03:47 PM

                        i didn't mean to imply anything with my last comment - i certainly hope you didn't take it that way. believe me, even though i may occasionally get frustrated by all my dietary limitations, i still manage to live a rather tasty life :)

                        1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                          magiesmom RE: goodhealthgourmet Jan 17, 2011 05:38 PM

                          no, I was just annoyed with myself, certainly not you. I know you have a very tasty life but I also know it is considerable work!

                  2. re: goodhealthgourmet
                    bushwickgirl RE: goodhealthgourmet Jan 17, 2011 09:36 AM

                    ghg, the SK and eipcurious recipes are very similar, really not much difference in flavor and texure. Either one I consider to be NY style. The famous Lindy's recipe is pretty much the same, all with added flour for a slightly firmer bite.

                    S & S? Not very up on what goes on in the Bronx, except the zoo and the botantical garden. A review I just read stated that S & S is the cheesecake served at Luger's, which I've had, and if true, IIRC, it was very good. Junior's is so much closer for us, but next time we make a foray into Bronx world, I'lll definitely check it out.

                    1. re: bushwickgirl
                      goodhealthgourmet RE: bushwickgirl Jan 17, 2011 09:55 AM

                      Zabar's sells S&S, but you have to buy the entire cheesecake...which is why i didn't mention it at first ;)

                      1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                        bushwickgirl RE: goodhealthgourmet Jan 17, 2011 09:56 AM

                        Yes, it's slices only these days, <sigh>

                        1. re: bushwickgirl
                          magiesmom RE: bushwickgirl Jan 17, 2011 01:01 PM

                          good excuse for a party!!!!

                          1. re: magiesmom
                            bushwickgirl RE: magiesmom Jan 17, 2011 01:30 PM

                            Oh, true, and we do a seasonally appropriate cheesecake for Thanksgiving and Easter, definitely for the Fourth, for a group, but none of my friends ought to be eating more than the occasional slice either these days. ;-)

            2. blue room RE: exotik1 Apr 7, 2010 09:18 AM

              Hmm.. I love vanilla too, but without *some* citrus I don't think you could taste the cheese properly?

              1 Reply
              1. re: blue room
                bushwickgirl RE: blue room Apr 7, 2010 10:26 AM

                A little lemon zest or juice "lifts" the flavor, kind of like salt does with savory things. But it's up the the baker. Also, some cream cheese brands are more tangy than others, but Philly (the classic) is not. Rainey's recipe, downthread, has the addition of sour cream for tang and a flavor lift.

              2. r
                rainey RE: exotik1 Apr 7, 2010 09:19 AM

                This is the first cheesecake recipe I ever used some 40 years ago. It's still my go-to recipe for a basic cheesecake.

                Dream Cheesecake

                Recipe By: Woman's Day Encyclopedia of Cookery


                This very basic cheesecake from Steve's mom's one-a-week grocery store cookbook, is the first I ever made. I've made many others since. This one remains one of my very favorites and it's the standard by which I measure any other contenders. The flavor is rich and delicious. The texture is fantastic. And you can embellish this any way you can think of.


                1/4 cup butter, melted
                1 cup fine graham cracker crumbs, (about 16 large crackers)
                1 teaspoon cream of tartar
                6 eggs, separated
                3 tablespoon sugar
                19 ounce cream cheese, (two 8-oz. packages + one 3-oz.)
                1 1/2 cup sugar
                3 tablespoon flour
                1/2 teaspoon salt
                1 pint dairy sour cream, (16 ounces)
                1 teaspoon vanilla


                Have all ingredients at room temperature. Heat oven to 325˚F. Generously butter a 9-inch springform pan.

                Mix butter and crumbs well. Press firmly into bottom of pan.

                Add cream of tartar to egg whites and beat until foamy. Gradually add 3 tablespoons of sugar and beat until stiff; set aside.

                Beat cheese until soft. In another small bowl, mix remaining sugar, the flour and salt. Gradually beat into cheese. Add egg yolks, one at a time, beating thoroughly after each. Add sour cream and vanilla; mix well. Fold in egg whites and pour mixture into prepared pan.

                Bake in preheated oven for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until firm. Turn off heat, open oven door and leave cake in the oven for 10 additional minutes. Remove from oven and let stand on a cake rack away from drafts until cool.

                Chill. Cake will shrink a bit as it cools. Also note that if it developed any cracks in baking they will mend themselves as the cake cools.

                7 Replies
                1. re: rainey
                  rainey RE: rainey Apr 7, 2010 09:22 AM

                  BTW, I never water bath a cheesecake. And, should this one develop a crack, it will relax back together overnight if you just leave it.

                  It's best made a day ahead too. Gives the moisture a chance to redistribute and the flavor to blossom.

                  1. re: rainey
                    buttertart RE: rainey Apr 8, 2010 09:36 AM

                    That Woman's Day Encyclopedia is a fount of wonderful recipes. I'm happy to see someone else out there has it!

                    1. re: buttertart
                      rainey RE: buttertart Apr 8, 2010 10:21 AM

                      Yes it is! Especially when you consider when it was compiled and what the sad state of American cuisine and cooking was at the time!

                      My m-i-l left one volume -- the one with the section on cheesecakes. From that volume I found so many memorable recipes that I searched for *years* for additional volumes. One day I discovered a bookstore that specialized in used cookbooks and found the motherlode -- all 12 volumes.

                      You're only the second person in some 40 years who has ever expressed knowledge of that series. Of the 3 of us who know it there are 3 big fans. ;>

                      1. re: rainey
                        buttertart RE: rainey Apr 8, 2010 10:38 AM

                        It is amazing, considering. My mom got it for me from the grocery store when I was in high school - I learned A LOT from it. I left that set behind at some point, found a single volume for a buck at the Strand a while back, and then found the rest of it at The Front Page in Rosemont, PA a couple of years ago (a motherlode of vintage cookbooks). A treasure!

                        1. re: buttertart
                          mamueller RE: buttertart Jan 17, 2011 11:06 AM

                          I have the whole series given to me by my aunt many years ago. I confess that I have not looked at them in many years - probably since the late 70's. Maybe it's time to drag a few of them out of the basement and have another look.

                      2. re: buttertart
                        sunflwrsdh RE: buttertart Jan 17, 2011 07:47 PM

                        I have the Woman's Day Encyclopedia of Cookery too, and I agree, it is a great source of basic recipes. One step beyond Betty Crocker, I though as a young cook in the late 70's and early 80's, and I also bought it a volume a week at the grocery store.

                        1. re: sunflwrsdh
                          HillJ RE: sunflwrsdh Jan 17, 2011 08:06 PM


                          Am I the only one with one of these on a shelf?

                  2. t
                    tonka11_99 RE: exotik1 Apr 7, 2010 12:47 PM

                    I like Emeril Legasses recipe on Food network. If you like don't add the zest and use vanilla or vanilla bean.

                    Classic New York cheesecake has a cookie bottom, I prefer the graham cracker crumb crust.

                    Here are some tips on cheesecake:

                    Have all the ingredients (cheese, eggs, liquids and flavorings) at room temperature before blending.

                    The main trick with cheesecake is gentle, coaxing heat. Just as you want them to cook slowly, you also want them to cool gradually. Quick changes of temperature upset the structure of the cake, causing cracks. For a moister, creamier cake, turn off the heat when the center's still loose and let cool in the oven. Leave the door open for a minute to get some of the heat out.

                    Many cheesecakes are baked in a water bath (a pan of water) to moderate the temperature. Since water remains at a constant temperature, the cake sets slowly, resulting in a super-creamy cheesecake.

                    To prevent the cheesecake from cracking as it cools, run a thin knife around the edge of the cake as soon as it comes out of the oven. After chilling, remove the springform ring (but not the metal base).

                    A crack in your cheesecake is not the end of the world. Simply use it as a starting point when cutting your first slice.

                    Dip a knife in warm water and wipe dry before slicing each piece.

                    I use parchment paper to line the pan on the sides.

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: tonka11_99
                      bushwickgirl RE: tonka11_99 Apr 7, 2010 01:50 PM

                      "has a cookie bottom" Are you thinking about Junior's? Cookie crust there, the classic of classics NY cheesecake, at it's best, although some people will dispute that. I like it way too much.

                      1. re: bushwickgirl
                        exotik1 RE: bushwickgirl Apr 7, 2010 02:57 PM

                        Lots of great tips! :) I might add the teensiest bit of lemon juice to lift the flavor but not enough to make it taste lemony...1/4 easpoon ok or is that too much? I was thinking of adding 3 tsp of flour (no more than that), im guessing the flour binds it all together. I wanted to use 3 vanilla beans but i live in Parkdale, i dont know where to get vanilla beans or paste closeby to King W. /Dufferin, does anyone know?

                    2. coll RE: exotik1 Apr 8, 2010 07:22 AM

                      I have the A&S (as in Abraham and Strauss) cheesecake contest winner's recipe, which used to be the cat's meow back in the 70s. I judge all other cheesecakes against that one. If none of the others sound right, I'll pull it out of my files for you.

                      13 Replies
                      1. re: coll
                        rainey RE: coll Apr 8, 2010 08:01 AM

                        Hope you'll post it!

                        1. re: rainey
                          coll RE: rainey Apr 8, 2010 09:25 AM

                          4 x 8z containers of whipped cream cheese (BTW most chefs I know use whipped)
                          1/4 lb (one stick) sweet butter
                          2 Tbsp cornstarch
                          1 1/4 tsp vanilla
                          16z sour cream
                          5 eggs
                          1 1/4 cup sugar
                          1 tsp lemon juice

                          Let cream cheese, sour cream, butter and eggs come to room temp for one hour.

                          Preheat oven to 375.

                          Blend cream cheese, butter and sour cream together, then add cornstarch, sugar, vanilla and lemon juice. Beat on high speed til well blended.

                          Beat in one egg at a time. Beat until very smooth.

                          Pour into greased 9 1/2 inch springform pan. Place in larger roasting pan filled halfway with warm water.

                          Bake one hour until top is golden brown. Turn off oven, let cake cool in oven, with door open, for one hour. Let cake stand at room temp for 2 hours.

                          Cover and refrigerate at least 6 more hours.

                          1. re: coll
                            rainey RE: coll Apr 8, 2010 10:23 AM

                            Merci bien. ;>

                            1. re: coll
                              roxlet RE: coll Apr 8, 2010 01:03 PM

                              No crust on the bottom??

                              1. re: roxlet
                                rainey RE: roxlet Apr 8, 2010 01:08 PM

                                Crust is nice and probably expected but, in fact, a cheesecake doesn't need it and can be served pretty effectively without. One of my favorite recipes was for a crustless pumpkin cheesecake. I have since added a graham cracker crust. No reason you can't add one to anything you like or omit it from anything that calls for a crust.

                                1. re: rainey
                                  coll RE: rainey Apr 8, 2010 01:17 PM

                                  Thanks for answering, that's exactly what I would have said. Crust is just gilding the lily in this case.

                                  1. re: rainey
                                    pharmnerd RE: rainey Jan 17, 2011 04:11 PM

                                    Have made a couple "New York" cheesecakes, Sherry Yard's A&S recipe and a ricotta-based one from Rao's Cookbook. The A&S one had none and the Rao's one a very light breadcrumb crust. So, was thinking that's how a true "New York" cheesecake was, light or no crust, but I guess it just a preference thing?

                                    Here's a link to a Los Angeles Times article with the A&S & other cheesecake recipes:


                            2. re: coll
                              roxlet RE: coll Apr 8, 2010 01:02 PM

                              Oh, coll! A&S was the department store of my childhood. I got all my Ginny Doll clothes there, but for special treats, we would go across the street to Kresge's (sp?) and get the waffle ice cream sandwiches on hot, freshly made waffles. I still have not had another one to equal that, but my sister was partial to their Charlotte Russes. Having had an aversion to whipped cream when I was a child (wish I still had that aversion!), I always went for the waffle ice cream sandwiches, but I am so excited to see an A&S recipe!

                              1. re: roxlet
                                coll RE: roxlet Apr 8, 2010 01:21 PM

                                I used to take the bus to go to the one in Hempstead, early 70s, they had all the coolest clothes, glitter, platform shoes, that kind of thing, that you couldn't find anywhere else except in the city. They were one of the last upscale holdouts in that town, it was truly a destination, and I'm glad you remember how great A&S was. I'm pretty sure that's why I think this recipe is the end all and be all, it's all I have left beside my memories.

                                1. re: coll
                                  roxlet RE: coll Apr 9, 2010 12:39 AM

                                  The one I went to was in downtown Brooklyn. I'm not sure I ever went to the one in Hempstead though!

                                  1. re: roxlet
                                    exotik1 RE: roxlet Apr 9, 2010 02:00 AM

                                    I am trying to make a gluten reduced cheesecake without comprimising the taste..my idea was to make it crustless...Anyway, who eats a cheesecake for the crust? :) Do I need to line to bottom of the springform with parchment paper? I don't know much about gluten free baking, but i plan to put stawberries with vanilla sugar and clear gelatain as a topping, are those gluten free?

                                    1. re: roxlet
                                      coll RE: roxlet Apr 9, 2010 04:06 AM

                                      There were others in Nassau County, but Hempstead was a flagship store, at least 3 stories and just the coolest merchandise. My husband grew up in Brooklyn and I know A&S was a regular shopping destination for his mother.

                                      1. re: coll
                                        roxlet RE: coll Apr 9, 2010 07:31 AM

                                        As him if she had a little oval-shaped token on her key ring -- that was the "charge card"!

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