Done right, even the simplest food can wow. Chef Baba Ibazeta-Benedicto has proven this time and again through her array of creations in Classic Confections*. From her Chocolate Oblivion to her Lemon Torte (our very own chef Kimmie’s favorite) she transforms familiar sweets to sophisticated desserts. She continues the same style at Nono’s, where she refines everyday comfort fare.
This cake is berry, berry, berry (that’s right, there’s three) good.
On this episode of Cooking With, Chef Baba shows us that even amateur cooks can elevate homemade food. She shares her recipe for a New York-style cheesecake topped with fresh berries. The process is incredibly simple; and as long as you invest in quality ingredients and have the patience to do everything right (i.e. cooling the cake overnight), then you end up with the fluffiest cheesecake ever. Unlike most cheesecakes, this one was light and well-balanced in flavors—so much so that two of our team members finished almost half the cake right there and then. Make it on Christmas eve, and you’ll have it just in time for festivities on the 25th!
*Note: Classic Confections has closed all of their stores, but you can still find their desserts in Nono’s branches.
Serves: 6-8 people
Active time: 1 hr
Total time: 3 hrs + overning
Special tools: Stand mixer, 8-inch cheesecake pan
Graham Cracker Crust
4 packs cream cheese (Chef Baba recommends Philadelphia Cream Cheese)
5 eggs, room temperature
2 cups sour cream
8 tbsp butter, room temperature
1 ½ cups sugar
2 tbsp cornstarch
1 ½ tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp fresh lemon juice
Preheat oven to 350F.
Butter 8-inch cheesecake pan.
To make the crust, combine crushed graham crackers with melted butter, and mix.
Transfer crust to cheesecake pan, covering the bottom. You can also put some crust up to the sides of the pan.
On a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, mix cream cheese and butter until smooth.
Add eggs to the mixture one at a time.
Add sour cream and mix until smooth.
Add sugar, cornstarch, vanilla extract, and lemon juice, and beat for 2 minutes.
Transfer mixture into the cheesecake pan.
Place in the oven over a tray with hot water, and bake for two hours.