Dec 26, 2010
What a clever idea it is to make the ladyfingers so they spread together and make a solid line of cake. If you have such an unbroken line, you can shave off the bottom of the ladyfingers and tuck them in the pan so they form an unbroken circle. They don't fall over, nor do they lean precariously. They are so well-mannered you'd think they'd been attending a school for cake etiquette.
Granted, they don't fit so neatly in the bottom, but they can be cut and gently stuffed in holes so they make a pretty fair base for the cheesecake. No one complained that there was a hole in the bottom of the cheesecake.
In fact, no one did any complaining at all. I really do think that Rose's cheesecakes are the best on earth. At least they're the best I've sampled so far in my many years on earth, and I've tasted a fair number. This one is no exception--a basic cheesecake made only with cream cheese, sour cream, eggs, sugar, fresh lemon juice, and vanilla--it's rich, light, and flavorful.
With three cups of sour cream (compared to two cups in the coconut cheesecake and two cups of sweet cream in the pumpkin cheesecake), you may think it's going to be too light and not cheesy enough. But it's just right.
It goes in a hot water bath. A 9-inch springform pan set in a 10-inch silicone cake pan set in a large, heavy skillet works perfectly for me. You do have to pay attention when you're pouring the hot water in the pan.
45 minutes later, you turn off the oven. An hour after that, you open the door and remove the cheesecake. Even after all that time in the oven, you will notice what is NOT on the top of the cheesecake: not a gap, a crack, a canyon, or a chasm. I've made cheesecakes in the past that tasted good but were nearly split in two by such imperfections. Of course, you can tell yourself that it doesn't matter because it will be covered by some topping, but in your heart, you know it's wrong.
No apologies are necessary when you serve this cheesecake. And there's just the right amount of cranberry topping that's just the right tart-sweet blend. (I made a cranberry cheesecake a few years ago that I was really looking forward to, but the cranberry topping turned out to be an overly sweet, cornstarchy mess.)
I took this to an office potluck for the project I've been volunteering for, and it was the star. Jim was convinced he'd never get a piece of this cake, but, fortunately, I was able to bring home a few pieces for him. I think otherwise he was going to take his camera and go to the basement and pout.
Julie: "This was really good. I don't even like cheesecakes-they're so heavy--and I just took a piece to be polite. But then I had to take another piece because I liked it."
Bridget: "You know, she made the ladyfingers. She makes everything."
Rachel: "I really liked it. I thought it was cherry topping because it wasn't too tart. Now that I know it's cranberry, I'll have to take another piece."
Erika: "It's delicious!"
Jim: "It really tastes good. The cranberry sauce is not too sweet or too tart, and the cheesecake was light but still rich. It's also quite pretty."
Posted by Marie at 6:33 PM