Bakeware

Why Basque cheesecake should be your next baking project

This instagram-famous dessert is impossible to mess up.

Here’s how to make Basque burnt cheesecake Credit: Reviewed / Valerie Li Stack

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As dining out may not be safe (and comfortable) for everyone at the moment, many people are attempting new recipes to hone their culinary skills—which has led to a surge in popularity of Basque burnt cheesecake to the tune of over 93,000 uses of the hashtag #basquecheesecake on Instagram. The reason? Well, this recipe is almost impossible to mess up.

What is Basque burnt cheesecake?

cheesecake
Credit: Reviewed / Valerie Li Stack

Basque cheesecake is probably the easiest cake that I've ever made.

There’s so much to talk about when it comes to Basque country, an autonomous community in northern Spain. Its unique culture, long history, and rich culinary traditions have earned the region a permanent place in the food world. It’s not clear who invented the burnt cheesecake—or if its invention was just a “happy accident”—but this dessert was well-received in Spain and is now gaining appreciation in the rest of the world.

Unlike its American counterpart, this Basque-style cheesecake doesn’t have a crust and is baked at a high temperature to create a caramelized top. It’s a crossover between a flan and cheesecake, with the darkened top adding a slightly chewy texture. There are some similarities between the burnt cheesecake and canelés in terms of preparation, but the latter involves more technique and takes about three days to make.

Making Basque burnt cheesecake is easy—you don’t necessarily need fancy baking tools, but I have a few tips to help ensure you achieve the perfect texture and taste. Here’s how to make Basque-style burnt cheesecake.

What You Need

ingredients
Credit: Reviewed / Valerie Li Stack

The recipe doesn't ask for hard-to-find ingredients.

Ingredients:

  • 225 g cream cheese (8-ounce stick)
  • 3 large eggs plus 1 yolk
  • 70 g granulated sugar
  • 2 g kosher salt
  • 1 g vanilla extract
  • 150 g heavy cream
  • 10 g cornstarch

Tools:

Time Needed

45 minutes

Difficulty

Easy

Step-by-Step:

How to make Basque cheesecake

cheesecake2
Credit: Reviewed / Valerie Li Stack

You can serve the cheesecake with ice cream, fruits, or just on its own.

Step 1: Preparation

Bring the cream cheese and eggs to room temperature. Preheat the oven to 470°F (450°F if you’re using a convection oven). Grease the bottom and sides of the cake pan with neutral oil. Then, line the pan with two layers of parchment paper. Make sure every corner is covered with parchment paper.

Step 2: Mix the ingredients

In a large mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese until smooth. Then, add the whole eggs and egg yolk one at a time, beating until well-combined. Add the sugar, salt, and vanilla extract and mix well. Lastly, mix in heavy cream. Sift cornstarch into the batter using the sieve and mix until the batter is smooth.

Step 3: Filter out the lumps

Run the batter through your sieve to remove any lumps in the mixture.

Step 4: Bake the cake

Gently pour the cake batter into the cake pan. Let sit for a few minutes if there are bubbles. Then, move the cake pan into the oven and let bake for 25 to 30 minutes until the top is dark brown.

Step 5: Serve

Wait for the cake to cool down to room temperature and then transfer to the fridge, still in the pan. Let rest in the fridge for at least three hours before unmolding.

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