After watching the food network a while back, I can’t remember what show it was, I decided to try to separate the eggs and beat the whites to stiff peaks and then fold them into the batter of my favorite cheesecake recipe in hopes of producing a light and airy cheesecake rather than the classic heavier version.
The result: heaven.
Pure. Cheesecake. Heaven.
This is what is known as a pillow cheesecake, one extra step and you have the lightest weight cheesecake filling you could ever imagine.
My husband actually prefers the traditional texture of my cheesecakes so I don’t do this very often. Personally I can’t decide what I like better. Both are so amazing and people are blown away when they bite into this and discover such an amazing texture.
I guess you’ll just have to try it and see for yourself which one you prefer!
As you can see in the photo I topped this cheesecake with some berries and kiwi, as an avid chocolate lover it still shocks me that this is one of my favorite ways to have cheesecake. I LOVE the refreshing pop of the berries. If you want to go this route I recommend spreading a little bit of whipped cream over the top of the cheesecake to get the berries to stick but you can top this cheesecake with any topping – what is your favorite way to top a cheesecake? Leave me a comment below!!
- FOR THE CRUST
- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 1.5 cups Vanilla Wafers
- ½ cup toasted, chopped almonds (pecans are nice too)
- ¼ cup sugar
- ¼ teaspoon coarse salt
FOR THE FILLING
- 2 pounds bar cream cheese, room temperature
- 1½ cups sugar
- ½ teaspoon coarse salt
- 1 tablespoon good quality vanilla (I used my homemade stuff of course and it was perfection!)
- 4 large eggs, separated
- ½ cup sour cream
- Preheat oven to 300º.
- Place a sheet of foil on the inside of the spring form pan. Press it in so it’s as smooth as you can get it.
- In a food processor, pulse vanilla wafers and almonds until fine crumbs form; add melted butter, sugar, and salt, and pulse to combine, don’t make it too moist or it will come out crunchy, it should still crumble when you pick it up, it shouldn’t be sticky. Press crumb mixture into the bottom of the spring form.
- Set a full kettle of water to boil.
- Using an electric mixer, beat cream cheese and sugar on medium-high until fluffy and smooth scraping down side of bowl, add vanilla. Beat in sour cream, egg yolks and salt.
- Remove the batter from the mixer bowl and wash out the bowl (unless of course you have an extra mixer bowl). Put in the egg whites and beat on high until stiff peaks form. Gently fold the egg whites into the cream cheese mixture. Pour into the crust.
- Wrap outside of spring form pan in foil, use the large size not the small or the water will leak into your cheesecake. Pour in filling; place in a roasting pan. Pour in boiling water to come halfway up side of spring form. Bake until just set in center, about one and a quarter hours, the middle will still be jiggly but the top will be set. Leave in oven with the door closed to cool for about an hour then remove and let cool to room temp.
- Cover; chill overnight before serving.