Cheesecake baking solutions
Baking pan alternatives
Picture this: You go to bake a cheesecake, you get out all of your ingredients, preheat your oven, prepare your crust...and then you go into your cabinet to get your spring-form pan, and to your shock, it is not there!
What are you going to do? You call your friends and family to see who you lent it to, call your neighbors to see if they have one you can borrow...but, to no avail! You have no spring-form pan, and your ingredients are still waiting for you.
No worries, I have solutions for you. There is more than one way to bake a cheesecake, and sometimes we have to get creative.
Check your pantry for two pre-made graham cracker crusts and ditch the homemade crust. If you score, you can use those in the place of a spring-form pan. Lessen bake time by ten minutes.
Bake your cheesecake in a nine by thirteen glass baking dish. Bake for the length of time your recipe calls for.
Use your homemade graham crust and bake your cheesecake like a pie in 2, 8, or 9-inch glass pie dishes. Reduce bake time by ten minutes.
Run (or drive) to Walmart or the closest grocery store and purchase a new pan.
When baking a cheesecake in a nine by thirteen baking dish, make sure to line the dish with non-stick foil. This will make the removal of the cheesecake easy.
A cheesecake can be frozen for up to six months.
If you freeze your cheesecake, cut it into slices and wrap it individually in zip-top plastic bags wrapped in foil.
You can double the ingredients for the crust if you would like a thicker crust for your cheesecake. Bake time will stay the same.
Make sure cream cheese is soft and at room temperature before preparing your filling. If it is too cold, the filling will be lumpy.
Don't forget the sugar! ( I did this once, and my cheesecake was inedible.)
You can use Dream Whip or Cool Whip as a shortcut for your whipped topping (as directed in the recipe) or use a container of heavy whipping cream and beat it with your mixer. If you choose this option, add 1 cup of powdered sugar to the whipped topping after it is firm, and mix until combined. You can add more powdered sugar if you desire a sweeter topping.
Make sure your cheesecake has chilled overnight. Doing this allows the ingredients to set and will provide you with the creamy texture in a cheesecake.
Remove cheesecake from the refrigerator thirty minutes to one hour before you will be consuming it. Cheesecake tastes best when it is creamy, and allowing it to become room temperature will provide the creamy texture you are looking for.
When a recipe calls for cream cheese, I highly recommend using the full-fat variety. I have tried low-fat cream cheese, and the texture is not the same as full-fat and creates a texture that is not as creamy when making a cheesecake.
Allowing your cheesecake to cool on top of the oven before placing it in the refrigerator will help prevent cracking.
As with any baking recipe, be sure to read through the directions before beginning and follow them exactly. Substituting ingredients when baking is never a good idea.
This is not necessarily a cheesecake baking tip, but be sure to stock your pantry with graham crumbs, graham crusts, and Nila Wafers. These will help you with your cheesecake baking dilemmas, but also with baking dilemmas in general.
Use a food processor to process hard cookies (such as Nilla Wafers) as your cheesecake crust.
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