Saturday, June 16, 2012

Key Lime Cheesecake

Key Lime Cheesecake


When tossing around ideas on what to take to our friends' house for dinner this weekend, my husband suggested key lime cheesecake. So, I googled some pictures and found one that looked good. I landed on cheesecakefactorymenu.com. Just from the look of things, the sight seems to be unofficial, so although I got the recipe from this site, I don't think it's an actual Cheesecake Factory recipe.
The original recipe made a large cheesecake, which would have been too much, so I adjusted amounts and made a 7-inch cheesecake. After adjusting, the recipe only called for 3 tablespoons of lime juice, and that just didn't sound like enough to give something like this much lime flavor or kick. So after making it with the 3 tablespoons of key lime juice, I thought a nice thin limey glaze on top would help, just in case. So I found a recipe for a lemon glaze on Creative Culinary, and substituted key lime juice for the lemon juice.
The cheesecake tastes perfect. It's creamy, but not wet; tart, but not sour. It's a good key lime cheesecake, if that's what you're into. Me, I usually like chocolatey or caramely cheesecakes best, but I was able to eat a healthy slice of this and enjoy it. 
The interesting thing to me about this cheesecake, is how beautifully shaped it is. I'm wondering if it's the 3 tablespoons of flour, along with the water bath, that allowed it to rise and stay as high as it did. I love that it didn't get that high outside ridge with the sunken middle, and it's so tall. I will have to try the flour in other recipes to see if I get similar results.

Key Lime Cheesecake 
  --adapted from cheesecakefactorymenu.com

Ingredients:
Crust
  • 1 cup graham cracker crumbs

  • 1/3 cup butter, melted

  • 1 tablespoon sugar
Filling
  • 2 1/2 sticks (20 oz. total) cream cheese at room temperature

  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup sour cream at room temperature

  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 3 eggs at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 3 tablespoons key lime juice (6 tablespoons if using regular lime juice)
Glaze (adapted from Creative Culinary)
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons key lime/lime juice
Topping/Garnish
  • 1 cup heavy cream, whipped with 2 tablespoons powdered sugar (or make stabilized whipped cream)
  • Sliced key limes/limes
Directions:
Mix graham crackers, melted butter, and sugar in a medium bowl or plastic bag. Pour into a 7-inch spring form pan that's been coated with non-stick cooking spray. Carefully spread crumb mixture evenly over the bottom and press firmly all over.

Put a layer of heavy duty aluminum foil on the bottom and up the sides of the spring from pan as a protective barrier to keep the water from getting into the cheesecake. I also like to put my pan into an oven-proof plastic turkey bag (top open) and then put it in the water bath, just to ensure I don't get a soggy cheesecake.

Preheat oven to 475 degrees Fahrenheit. Place a large shallow pan filled with 1 inch of water into the oven to create the water bath. 

In a large bowl (or the bowl of a standing mixer), beat the cream cheese with an electric mixer on low speed. Gradually beat in the sugar, sour cream, flour, and vanilla until smooth. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the eggs, 1/4 cup heavy cream, and lime juice and continue to beat until the mixture is smooth and creamy. 

Pour the cheesecake filling into the spring form pan. Place the pan into the water bath in the oven. After 8 minutes, reduce heat to 350 degrees and bake for another 40 minutes, or until filling is puffed, set, and light brown. Remove from oven and from the water bath, and allow to cool on a wire rack. Once cooled to room temperature, take the foil off, put a paper towel over the pan, and then cover with the foil (you can use a new piece of foil, but reusing is just as good).  Refrigerate overnight.

For the glaze, combine the sugar, cornstarch, water, and lime juice in a small pan. Mix until smooth. Bring to boil over medium heat, stirring constantly. Cook for 3 minutes. Cool/chill until cool, but not set. 

Pour cooled glaze into the center and spread evenly with an offset or rubber spatula. Refrigerate until glaze is cold and firm. Pipe whipped cream around the top of the cheesecake, if desired. Garnish with lime slices. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Makes about 8 servings



Paper umbrellas under plastic wrap keep whipped cream pretty.

58 comments:

  1. Wonderful blog.....great cheesecake too!

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    1. Well, thanks, Bernideen! I'm glad you're enjoying the blog. :)

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  2. This cheesecake looks wonderful! I would have a piece right away :-)!
    Greetings from Belgium,
    Marian

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    1. Thank you, Marian! I actually thought this was from my mother-in-law at first because her name is also Marian :) Thanks for the kind words!

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  3. Can I ask why you put a paper towel around the cake and then the foil for an overnight?

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    1. I just lay the paper towel on top of the spring form pan instead of just plastic wrap or foil so the towel absorbs any moisture that condenses in the fridge. Does that make sense? I don't like the condensation to drip onto the cheesecake.

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    2. So you don't put it on the cake?

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    3. You don't put the paper towel directly on the cheesecake. It's like the paper towel creates a layer underneath the foil that you place over the pan. The paper towel is larger than the diameter of the spring form pan, so it lays on top and then you cover with foil. The foil holds the paper towel in place and the paper towel absorbs the moisture as opposed to the condensation collecting in drops on the interior of the foil that will then drip onto the surface of the cheesecake. I mean, you can let it do that, but then you have to dab up the moisture later. Since you're putting a glaze on it anyway, I guess it doesn't really matter. It's just what I do. I never really gave it that much thought. :)

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    4. Paper towel...why didn't I think of that? I make a lot of cheesecakes and I never thought to do that! The condensation drives me bonkers :) Thanks for the tip!

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    5. Well, you're welcome for the tip, Lisa! :)

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    6. I love the idea of the paper towel also!! I can't wait to try this recipe!!!

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  4. I just made this cheesecake but I made it in those little aluminum pie pans so I could share them with some friends - they can just eat them out of the tiny pans. They turned out fantastic! Thanks so much for sharing. The lime glaze was a great addition!

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  5. Hello! I am excited to try this recipe. I tried to go to the cheesecake factory site you sited on here to get the larger recipe but the website doesn't work. Do you know the larger recipe or where I can get it? Thanks!

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    1. Bummer that website is gone. Glad I got the recipe before it went away, though. I think you can just double it and use a 10-inch spring form pan. I will try to locate the original recipe. I probably printed it or saved it, but I'll have to hunt it down.

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  6. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  7. Hi,

    After searching for almost an hour looks like I've finally got a solution to my problem..condensation. I will try the paper towel trick next time. A question, do you tie a rubber band or something to hold the paper towel or is it loosely covered?
    Also, why is it important to cover the cheesecake? Can't we just leave it in the fridge uncovered?

    Thanks,
    Deepti.

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    1. Deepti, Sometimes I will put a paper towel over the top and then put a wooden spoon on top of that, diagonally on the paper towel to hold it in place, and then refrigerate it that way. I think I cover the cheesecake because I'm paranoid that it will pick up other odors in the refrigerator. If you're not worried about odors/flavors mixing, then you could probably put it in there uncovered for one night. After that, it might dry it out on top and make an undesired crustiness on top.
      The way I describe in the recipe, laying a paper towel on top of the springform pan and then covering that with foil, usually holds the paper towel in place and the paper towel absorbs the condensation.

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  8. Thanks so much for the useful and prompt reply.

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  9. Hello,
    This looks absolutely delicious and beautiful. Do you think it would be possible to substitute the lime juice with lemon juice? And another question, I don't have a 7-inch pan, could I double the recipe and use a 10-inch pan?
    I'm really glad I stumbled upon your blog, loving it.
    Thanks,
    Mo

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    1. I think it would be fine switching lemons for the limes. My friend makes a lemon cheesecake, so I figure it's doable.
      And, yes, I think you could double the recipe and use a 10-inch pan. I think I use a 9 or 10 inch pan for full cheesecake recipes, which call for 4 sticks of cream cheese. I think I halved the original recipe in order to use my small pan.
      Thanks for the kind words; I always love to hear compliments. :)

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    2. Thank you so much for the quick reply. It worked out great, the cheesecake was delicious, creamy and it stayed so high, it was absolutely perfect! It's a brilliant recipe, thank you for sharing it.
      I've bookmarked your blog!
      Thank you again, and have a happy Easter,
      Mo

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    3. Mo,
      Thanks for letting me know it worked out and that you enjoyed it. Made my day. :)
      You're welcome, and you have a happy Easter too.

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  10. Did you ever find out if the reason the cake stayed puffy was from the flour or from the water bath? I'd love to make this but I'd like to skip the water bath.

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    1. Sorry to say that I have yet tools another entire cheesecake. I've just made mini cheesecakes since. Honestly, though, I hate to tell you this, but water baths really do work the best for cheesecakes no matter what. Cheesecakes turn out creamier, more moist, and there is always less caving. I know. Not the response you probably wanted. :/

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  11. Hello,
    I am making this right now and I don't know if I have any turkey bags for the water bath---I am worried about the water seeping in...i have the foil on but I don't really trust it to hold well...have you ever done the water bath witout using a turkey bag?
    Also---I doubled the recipe in a 10 spring form pan, how long do you think it should cook?
    Thank you sooo much!
    Isabel

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    1. Oh, shoot. It's probably too late! I'm trying to not be connected to my computer so much. :/ I have baked cheesecakes without the plastic bags, and I usually have trouble with water seeping in, unfortunately. That's why I started with the bags. I mean, I have had cheesecakes turn out fine with just the foil, but it only takes one soggy cheesecake to turn you off, you know?
      As far as time, you're probably already done, but I would bake it at 350 degrees (after the initial 8 minutes at 475) for 60-70 minutes, or until the center doesn't jiggle like a liquid when the pan is tapped.
      If you can, let me know what you ended up doing and how it turned out for you. :/ I'm worried for you now.

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  12. can i use cornstarch intead of flouf? if so how much?

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  13. I am glad you posted about the water bath. I've had the sunken center in my cheese cakes and have not found a way short of doing smaller ones(4 inches) and that gets old as you have to have a lot of those small pans.

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  14. I made the large cheesecake for my Great-grandson's Dedication luncheon on Mother's
    Day this year. It served 20 people with left-overs. Delicious!!! I will use this recipe again. I had one problem, did not have wide aluminum foil the cover the bottom of the pan. So, I rolled two sheets together about 4 times and flatten it out, making a large wide sheet. I leaked a little but not enough to ruin the cake. In the future, I will purchase wide foil or either seal with waterproof tape on the bottom. I highly recommend this recipe.

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    1. Well, I appreciate you letting me know that you enjoyed the cheesecake. I'm glad you and your guests enjoyed it. :)

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  15. I have a very similar recipe for this cake, same basic ingredients, same prep, water bath and all (and yes, nothing beats a water bath for creating a creamy cheesecake ;)...)The difference with my cake is it's lemon with a lemon curd topping! And I use fresh squeezed lemons as well. Also the vanilla is omitted; that is added in the "plain" cheesecake version which suggests for the topping what ever fruit you prefer; strawberry, cherry, blueberry (my husbands favorite) etc...the lemon version uses vanilla wafers for crust and the plain, the traditional graham cracker crust. Have you though of adding lime zest to the glaze? I think it will give it much more of a punch on the lime/citrus flavor...the lemon curd in my version calls for it. It is definitely a crowd pleaser and I have been making them every Easter for years...I found the recipe in an Family Circle magazine back in 1993. I am going to try your recipe since I LOVE key lime pie…I get why the vanilla is in your cheesecake as every key lime pie I have ever had I found they really have a less "citrusy" consistency and more of a creamy one, as opposed to say a lemon pie. ;)

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    1. Ooooh...why didn't I think of adding zest to the glaze? Great idea. I'll do that next time for sure. Thanks for all of that great information. Very interesting.

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  16. Love the idea of the turkey bag as water proof barrier! The foil wrapped around pans didn't work for me either no matter how tight I thought I had it, but I have been using a 3" high silicone cake pan one size larger than my spring form pan. I just place the spring form pan inside the silicone cake pan then put them both into a water bath dish and put in a couple of inches of hot water. So far so good, no soggy crust:)

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    1. I LOVE the silicone cake pan idea! I'm going to do it! Thanks! :)

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  17. This Recipe Is Wonderful! I Am Making A Second Time For A Father's Day Gathering At The Reqeust Of My Mother In Law!
    Thank You!

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    1. Aw, thanks for letting me know that. You just made my weekend. :)

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  18. I have a question for you! I have a 10 inch springform but am interested in making the smaller version, the 7 inch recipe. But I can't find a 7 inch springform pan anywhere! I do have an 8 inch though. Could I leave the ingredient measurements the same and just decrease the cooking time since the 8 inch pan wouldn't be as thick? Or are there other adjustments to make to bake in the 8 inch pan?

    Thanks so much!!!! I've made this before in the 10 inch by doubling the recipe and I LOVED it!!!!

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    1. I think you have the right idea. Leave the ingredients the same. It will be a little thinner, but I'm sure it will taste fine. I would start checking it for being puffed and set at around 30-31 minutes. Since you've made it before, you already sort of know what it should look like when it's done.
      I'm glad you're enjoying the recipe. Comments like yours are what keep me going! :)

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  19. Amazing! Your directions were so simple and easy. Doubled the recipe for a 10 inch pan. Never cooked a cheesecake using a water bath. What a difference! Thank you so much!

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    1. Yay! I'm so glad it worked for you! :)

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  20. i'd love to see the larger size recipe too, the link to the page you found it on seems broken. i only have a large springform pan!
    Also, your photos are beautiful! as soon as i saw them i knew this was the cake i wanted to make for my birthday! thanks.

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  21. Shoot, wenlovesfood--I'm out of town right now, and I think the original recipe is either on my computer at home, or it's printed out and sitting in my recipe binder. If you have a large spring form pan, I recommend doubling the recipe, although for the crust, you probably only need to increase it by a third. Sorry! When I get home I'll try to remember to look it up and post the full recipe, because it seems like a lot of people need that. I just looked at the comment above yours, and that person said they doubled the recipe for a 10-inch pan and it worked. Let me know if you try it and if it works out. Oh,and Happy Birthday to you!

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  22. Replies
    1. Well, thanks for letting me know you liked it, Carolyn. :)

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  23. I baked the cake yesterday and just made the glaze. My glaze is cooling, but is so thick I don't think it will pour when it is cooler. Is it possible that there is too much cornstarch? I made one and a half times the recipe for my 9 inch pan. There is 1 and 1/8 tablespoons of cornstarch to 1/4 + 1/8 cups water and sugar and 3 tablespoons key lime juice. It was super thick as soon as it came to a boil, I only boiled for 30 seconds. I'll figure something out when it comes time to spread on the cake. I always mix cheesecake in my food processor which makes them super creamy too. I'm excited for the water bath/food processor combo, might be award winning! Thanks for the tip about the turkey bag, foil only always leaks for me and I never do a water bath because of it. I'll be on the lookout for a silicone pan big enough, that seems insanely easier.

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    1. Hmmmm...sorry the glaze doesn't seem to be turning out. I haven't made this cheesecake in a looong time, so I can't even speak to any glitches when I make it. :/ I would add maybe another tablespoon or so of water to thin it out. Probably too late now, but please let me know what happened.

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    2. The glaze was kind of lumpy, but the cheesecakes was SO creamy that it didn't matter. Everyone LOVED it!!! A keeper recipe for sure. Next time I will actually make the whipped cream for it. Thanks so much!

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    3. Thanks for updating me! I appreciate it. I'm glad you enjoyed the cheesecake, and I guess next time you'll have to cut back on the cornstarch. Sorry that part didn't work out, but I'm glad you liked it anyway.

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  24. Hi! I'm making this recipe for tonight, but I only have a 9 1/2 inch pan...could I leave the measurements the same? I'll probably cook it for less time, maybe 30 mins or less. Also I don't have time to refrigerate it overnight, so what do you recommend? Thanks! =)

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    1. Shoot! I'm sorry I'm late in checking my comments! How did it turn out?

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  25. Hello!

    Dumb question. I've made these cheesecake as is before for my fiance's birthday (it was an enormous success - thank you).
    I am supposed to make an Oreo cheesecake for friends this weekend - do you think folding chopped Oreos into the cheesecake batter, using an Oreo crust, omitting the key lime juice and adding more vanilla would still yield the same kind of cheesecake?

    Thanks for your help either way!

    --Erin.

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  26. Hello!

    Dumb question. I've made these cheesecake as is before for my fiance's birthday (it was an enormous success - thank you).
    I am supposed to make an Oreo cheesecake for friends this weekend - do you think folding chopped Oreos into the cheesecake batter, using an Oreo crust, omitting the key lime juice and adding more vanilla would still yield the same kind of cheesecake?

    Thanks for your help either way!

    --Erin.

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    1. That's a good question, and a great idea. I think it would turn out very similarly. Just make sure you use the water bath and I think it will be awesome. Please let me know if you do it and how it turns out!

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    2. In the oven now - will let you know how it turns out tomorrow! :)

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    3. I'm looking forward to the report!

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  27. Came out great! Here's a photo: http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v107/piximush/Cheesecake_zpse51fa3a5.jpg

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    1. Whoa! That looks amazing! Thank you so much for sharing the report and the pic! I love it! ;)

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