Saturday, March 12, 2011

Japanese Cheesecake - Tips & Tricks


Cotton Soft Japanese Cheesecake and French Chocolate Macarons for a rainy afternoon. I wish I was one of my kids. Just sayin'.
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We all deserve something nice in the day to perk us up. For me, it's definitely a good cake or pastry, accompanied by a cuppa. Like this Japanese Cheesecake. :) Some of you may remember that I made it recently for my friends who came over for tea. Since that day, my daughter has been badgering me for an encore. No, I said firmly. I have so many other things I want to try baking ... and left it at that. However, things started going in her favour, when one after another, four of my friends tweeted about their Japanese Cheesecakes. Temptations, temptations ... so I sighed and caved in.

Well, here it is ... appearing for the - gasp! - third time on my blog. The ever popular Cotton Soft Japanese Cheesecake.

You know why I love this cake so much? Unlike other cakes where I needed practice to get right, this cheesecake turned out beautifully from the very first time I attempted it ... so it's got a special place in my heart. :)

I thought I'd share some tips today because I receive many blog-related emails ever so often, and honestly, I have given up replying. I do feel apologetic because people take the time to write, but I simply can't cope. Blogging is a hobby, not a job. My family is my job. So, I have decided that this is probably the best way to address all those "Ju, please help!" questions. Best I can do.

Ready? Here goes.

Recipe
(reprinted here from my old post, and originally from Diana's Desserts)
- 140g fine granulated sugar
- 6 egg whites
- 6 egg yolks
- 1/4 tsp cream of tartar
- 50g butter
- 250g cream cheese
- 100ml fresh milk
- 60g cake flour (can also use plain flour)
- 20g corn flour
- 1/4 tsp salt

1. Preheat the oven at 160°C. Melt cream cheese, butter and milk over a double boiler. Cool the mixture. Fold in the flour, the cornflour, salt, egg yolks and mix well.

2. Whisk egg whites with cream of tartar until foamy. Add in the sugar and whisk until soft peaks form.

3. Add the egg whites to the cheese mixture to and fold well. Pour into a 8-inch round springform cake pan or removable-bottom cake pan (lightly grease and line the bottom and sides of the pan with greaseproof baking paper or parchment paper). Wrap the base of your cake tin with aluminium foil, to prevent seepage ... although I never do, and it has never seeped! ;)

4. Bake cheesecake in a water bath for 1 hour 10 mins or until set and golden brown at 160°C.

5. Leave to cool in oven with door ajar, about 30mins to 1 hour. Sudden changes in temperature may cause the cake to cool too quickly and collapse.

Now, for some extra tips. These work for me, and I hope they work for you too! :)

Tip #1 : Beating the egg whites
You can beat your whites on high until they start to stiffen, but for the last 3 to 4 mins of whisking, do switch your mixer speed to low. This helps to stabilise the air bubbles. I notice I get a "foam sponge" texture when I do this (as you see in the first photo). When I beat on high throughout, I tend to get larger air bubbles, resulting in texture that looks like this:


Yikes, how I hate looking at my old photos! Ewwww!
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Either way though, you get a cottony soft cake which is extremely easy to eat and eat. And eat.


Tip #2 : Sieving the cream cheese batter
This is totally optional, but because I am anal a perfectionist, I want a lump-free, smooth as silk batter. So once I have combined my cream cheese mixture with the flour and yolks, I usually strain it using a wire mesh sieve. After that, I fold the beaten egg whites in. I repeat, sieve BEFORE you fold in the egg whites ... otherwise, you can say sayonara to your cake!


(Left) Cream cheese that has been melted with butter and milk. There are still some visible small lumps even after a lot of stirring.
(Right) After adding flour and yolks, I sieved the batter to ensure a lump-free batter.



Tip #3 : Baking in a water bath
God, I hate this. It's so troublesome! Plus, there is always the risk of water seeping in, and even if it doesn't, your cheesecake tends to get a little damp. I want my cake fluffy, not damp. So this is what I do ...


Cake tin goes on the rack, in the middle.

I place tart moulds which have been filled with water, in the four corners of my oven. They provide the sauna effect but do not add dampness to the cake. Why not a tray of water, you ask? Well, with a tray, you still get condensation at the bottom of the cake tin. With individual tart moulds placed around the cake, your cake's bottom will always remain dry. <- I sound like a diaper ad!


Tip #4 : Lining the cake tin
Line the bottom and sides of your cake tin. Make sure the baking paper extends higher than the cake tin by about 1.5 inches. If you prepare the batter correctly, you will notice that it rises very well during baking. You need that extra height from the baking paper to prevent possible spillage.


Tip #5 : Tenting with a foil
I recommend this 100% because the cake top browns very easily. I use a sheet of aluminium foil and loosely place it over the tin. That's why point #4 is important ... because if you do not provide ample room for the cake to rise, it will get stuck onto the foil. And when you peel it off? Urgh, not so pretty. So, tent the cake, and remove it only in the last 1 to 2 mins of baking time, just for it to brown (not burn).


Tip #6 Drier is better
Personally, I like to overbake the cake slightly (say, about 10mins more), to be on the safe side. A Japanese Cheesecake should be tear-away soft and fluffy, and to get that sort of texture, you need to have a dry-ish cake. As long as you follow #4 and #5, your cake will not burn. A drier cake is airier and less likely to collapse or shrink (you won't get those dreaded crease lines on the top). Finally, keep it in the oven, door slightly ajar for at least 30mins to an hour.

Well, that's all the tips & tricks I wanted to share. I hope you found them useful. :) For those of you attempting this for the first time, may you hit the jackpot and get your flawless Japanese Cheesecake! ;)


Sadly, my photos do not do justice to the cake - look at the horribly washed out colours. :( The cake is supposed to be a brighter shade of yellow, but then, it was a gloomy day ... so everything turned out depressing. Except the eating part. Heh.

201 comments:

  1. hi Ju, thks alot for the tip!
    this is really a big help for a curious amateur like me hheheeh...
    will definitely give this a try
    and GOSH!!! how i luv ur pics - i remember u mentioned u use canon 550D?
    exactly the one i'm currently using - should take private tuition with u on how to take food pic like a pro - otherwise its a waste to the camera hehehehhe...

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    1. Hi Ju!

      Can I ask how loosely exactly was the aluminium foil tent like? Mine has the top looking rather cracky(cracks, holes) somewhat. Also, your browning, was only from baking right?

      Okay I did not follow the recipe exactly.
      -Used fine brown sugar
      -54g of plain flour because I ran out.
      -Oven definitely looks bigger than yours even though I did put 4 foil trays around the 4 corners just beside the cake.


      About the foil, I folded it like a fan and pulled it on top of the cake while baking, since you said something like tenting .. so I assumed gaps... I'm afraid.. could it be?!

      Thanks in advance!

      -Victor

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  2. I love this type of cheesecake too, much lighter than the western version..but can be quite tricky to make...thanks for the useful tips:D

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  3. Hi Ju, that really is helpful.Thank you! The pictures are great so don't be too upset about it. We all have the bad-photographs days.:) Happy baking !!

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  4. looks perfect!thanks for tips!

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  5. Love at first sight with your cheesecake!!Thanks for your wonderful tips!

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  6. ooo wow looks, so perfectly smooth. i should get mum to try this... hehehe

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  7. Very useful, Ju! I've been wanting to try this style of cheesecake forever.

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  8. RUkidding the cheesecakes look divine!

    I HATE water baths too..inevitably..no matter how thick my foil..how well wrapped..the crust always seems wet:( This is a great idea,.
    You picked the BEST and most rewarding job my darling.

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  9. its THE Cotton cheesecake. Hehe I have yet to post it up on my blog. I find sieving the batter a must for me as there are always cream cheese lumps no matter how long i stir them in the pot. An extra step, but totally worth it!

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  10. Thanks for your trip and wonderful notes again. I must learn how to make this for one of my bestie who love japanese cheesecake :)

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  11. Dang, I wish I saw this post before I baked my hubby's birthday cake! I can't seem to get it to cool down without it creasing at the sides like a muffin top. Your cake is just stunningly beautiful, and so fine, that I wish my SKIN looks like this........

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  12. Yum! That looks fantastic! Thank you for sharing all those tips :)

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  13. Your recipe is by far the best! Works everytime :)
    Thanks so much for sharing.

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  14. Great tips! I love Japanese Cheesecake and hope to give your method a try soon. Thank you for sharing!

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  15. this is super super genius and looks so yummy.. I love cheese cake anytime!

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  16. What amazing tricks, Ju! I am not a big cake maker so I have very few tricks in my cooking bag. I am definitely adding these to it. Great looking cake and so sweet of you to walk us through it. What a great teacher you are.

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  17. I am all for Japanese cheesecake. I prefer the soft and fluffy Japanese cheesecake to the dense and heavy american cheesecake. This is an awesome post! I am a lousy baker, and so all the tips certainly help!

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  18. You are a lifesaver - or, in this case, a Cotton Soft Japanese Cheesecake-saver!! I tried making a recipe (from another site) a couple of weeks ago and it came out all sorts of wrong. 8-(

    Of all your tips, I am most grateful regarding the alternative to a water bath. I have to use a small pan that can fit into a water-filled pan that can fit into my small oven! By that time, I have WAY more cake batter than I can bake at one time. Ugh... I am most definitely trying it again using your tips. 8-D

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  19. They look like fluffy pillows...One of these days I must try this...
    Your pics are always beautiful old and new!

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  20. I love the texture of this cake. It looks so fine!

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  21. Hi, thanks for your precious notes...I'll try it out next weekend.
    So far I don't have much luck with sponge cake so I hope your tips will help.....i will come back and tell u the results next week after I try it out.
    Thank you ;)
    Florz

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  22. This type of cheesecake is new to me, I'm used the the more dense American style cheesecakes, which frankly I find too heavy. I think I would really like this version much better.

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  23. It looks wonderful, i just love japanese food. I haven't tried much of their deserts, but i can imagine they are good.

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  24. I love JCC. It's soft and light compare to the regular CC version.

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  25. he he it must be good if your little one kept asking for it looks amazing your a great mum :-)

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  26. Thanks for sharing and the tips. The cake looks perfect.

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  27. i see the cake and this song pops into my mind

    You Are So Beautiful www.youtube.com/watch?v=00M1BDtC-jo

    great job on the beautiful cake and the post!
    -shirley-

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  28. I made japanese cheesecake a few months back.Loved it so much the light and airy texture.Thanks fro sharing those tips.

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  29. I am very very tempted to try! As soon as I can find time. Thank you for such detailed instructions. And also, the old shot was pretty good!

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  30. Thanks for sharing these great tips! I definitely can see how soft and fluffy this cheesecake is!

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  31. Your cake is gorgeous!! Thank you so much for the tips! I just made this about a week ago. My first attempt was okay, but not exactly what I was looking for. I've been thinking about retrying but i didn't know what to do differently to get a better outcome. Now I have all your tips! I can't wait to try again.
    Also just yesterday I made castella cake. It was my third attempt and I finally succeeded! Your castella cake post was my inspiration to try again and I read your tips and I finally got a nice one.

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  32. Thanks for the tips. Not sure why I am still so nervous to bake this cake!

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  33. This looks good. Can I do away cream of tartar?
    Thanks.

    Joie

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  34. I've always wanted to try Japanese cheesecake but sometimes it looks very intimidating. Thank you SO much for this detailed guide (with pictures and everything!), will now be trying it in the near future.

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  35. Thank you very much...I love your blog....from the bottom of my heart..(gross but true)

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  36. I have tried this cake 2x and failed! I cant wait to try again with your tips!

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  37. Wow Ju, I'm really inspired to give it a shot :)

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  38. It looks pretty and delicious. By looking at your photos, I can taste the softness and fluffy-ness of your JCC.
    I want to try your recipe. And, wanna ask a 'silly' question, do we need to preheat the oven before we start to bake? TIA Ju :)

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  39. Belzy: Yes! Always pre-heat before baking anything. :) Good luck!

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  40. Hi, I have two questions. 1) Your Tip no. 3 will act as a water bath? 2) If I remove the aluminium foil in the last 1 to 2 minutes of the baking time, will the opening of the oven cause the cake to collapse due to the sudden change of temperature? Thanks for giving out such wonderful tips, can't wait to try all of them.

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  41. Anon: 1) Yes. 2) Do it quickly! ;) The cake would have been baked through by then (and therefore would hold its form), so it won't sink suddenly.

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  42. i'm baking it now!!! have way more batter than just a 8 inch pan! haha.. ended up putting some into muffin cups... sneak one of the cups out halfway thru to see if its done... dunno if its becoz i used lemon essence instead of lemon juice... it seems to have the mama lemon washing detergent smell!!! haiz... hope the actual cake would be good...

    -momo

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  43. haiz... failed attempt.. the top part is totally burnt... took just 1min.. i'm beginning to think that my oven is lousy for all moi failed baking attempts. (ha.)

    and of coz the mama lemon smell from the lemon essence is still there. terrible... shall omit lemon next time (if i manage to recover from this failure...) thanks for the recipe and tips though...

    - momo

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  44. Hey Ju, thanks for the tips! I made this yesterday and left my oven door ajar (2 cm open) for 40 minutes but the entire thing shrank a bit ): It tasted fine, but the bottom part was a little dense (I used your waterbath method). Any thoughts?

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  45. Hi momo! Oh dear!! ;) Lemon essence ... err, I don't think it was a good idea. :P Actually I hate lemon juice in this sort of cake, so I omit it totally. Yeah, the top browns very fast. I KNOW! ;)

    Ron: It has nothing to do with water bath. It sounds to me that you did not fold the whites thoroughly enough, so the parts of the batter which did not have the whites incorporated in it sank to the bottom. Hence the slightly denser texture. HTH!

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  46. Ah, maybe you're right. I'll make sure I incorporate the whites thoroughly the next time I try this, thanks!

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  47. This looks perfect and takes me right back to Japan where we enjoyed a piece of the most delicious soft cheese cake whilst viewing the beautiful Fujisan!

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  48. I tried this recipe on saturday, my cake shrunk n collapsed like nobody's business :~(
    the cake was seperated into layers where the bottom was quite dense, but.the top cracked and was rather dry.. for the egg whites do i actually whisk till stiff? my batter was rather runny after i folded in egg whites. cos i nvr tried any recipe with egg whites beaten to soft peaks ^^" Any idea?

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  49. Anon: Clearly, you did not fold the egg whites properly. Whisking egg whites can be tricky ... it comes with practice. Whisking to stiff peaks (or overbeating) increases the risk of the cake deflating & cracking during baking. So, I would recommend soft peaks to be on the safer side.

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  50. Ok.. will try again next week, Thx for the tips!! :)

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  51. Hi Ju, I tried this over the weekend and it wasn't successful either. Boo~ But I think I know which part went wrong, will probably try again ;)

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  52. hi ju, juz a (idiotic) qn... do u use the top and bottom heat or juz the bottom heat when baking? =)

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  53. Min: Good luck!

    Anon: Err ... I'm not sure what you mean. I just turn on the oven and bake! Lol.

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  54. I'm so excited I found your blog :)

    I was just at a bakery where the owner gave us samples of what she called "Japanese Cheesecake." I never heard of it, but was in heaven when I took a bite. It blew my mind that something called a cheesecake could be so cottony soft.

    I can't wait to make this cake!! Thank you!

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  55. Hi, may I ask if what's the best temperature to eat the cake? Room temp or chilled? Thanks!

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  56. Chen: I like it slightly warm, actually! But that's my personal preference.

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  57. Hi, I'm planning on making this cake but I was wondering ... what's cornflour? Is that the same as cornmeal or cornstarch?
    Thanks =]
    - Kayleigh -

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  58. your cheese cake is amazingly beautiful! ;)

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  59. I am eating the cake now!! taste so good! light and fluffy. I followed the way you put the water in small tin..but my cake side will shrivel away. They dont look beautiful like your round cake.

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  60. Hello Ju, I think your blog is awesome! I am residing in the US and your recipes especially the ones which remind me of home is just what I need! I am a Teochew too and am gonna try the Kong Bak Pao this weekend, *Lao nuar*
    p.s. The Japanese cotton cheesecake is popular with my friends here :-) I hv blogged about it with your recipe! I see a few more ppl baking this weekend in Virginia.

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  61. the density/texture of the case looks amazing! we have to add this on our to bake list.

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  62. isn't japanese cheesecake has lemon juice and zest in the recipe? i make this cake, but the recipe i use is using lemon. it turns out great! the lemony taste and also the smell is amazing :)

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  63. I really like the contrast of the dark top and the ivory color of the cake. How did you get the color to be so dark but still able to only have a thin layer of skin? Thanks!

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  64. hi ju thx so much for your tips.... it really helps ! i wonder where can i buy the golden paper mat and in fact what is the name of it? the one in your 1st photo... can you tell me? thx

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  65. Hi ju, i baked the cake in 8" rd w paper extended 11/2" above the tin but my cake still rose above the collar and stuck to the foil! The texture was ok though. Do u think i overbeat the egg whites?

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  66. This looks really different from anything I've made before. I wonder if I can find this somewhere in the states? I think I'm going to try making it, just because I'm curious what it tastes like!

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  67. Hi Ju, for the rectangular pieces of cake featured in this post, did you bake the cake in a square tin? What size did you use and did you need to scale the recipe?

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  68. Jojo: I got those golden "coasters" for the cake from Phoon Huat. Something like $3+ for a stack.

    kahling: Wow, you baked a super cake! I don't think you did anything wrong though. If your cake didn't crack, chances are you beat the whites correctly. Maybe you just need a higher paper lining.

    missy-J: I baked 100% according to the recipe in a round cake tin. I just cut the cake into rectangular slices, that's all. ;)

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  69. Thank you for sharing the recipe and your tips. I baked this recently and this post has been very helpful!

    Just curious though, how did you transfer the cake out of the pan with the crust in tact? Did you use a springform pan? Mine stuck to the cooling rack after transferring it out...

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  70. cassang: Yes, I always use a springform for this cake because it's so delicate. Actually, you brought up a very good point. I'll amend in the post to recommend that everyone should use a springform for this. Thanks!

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  71. Ah... thanks for confirming this. Will make it the next time with a springform pan! ;)

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  72. Heloo.. I've baked this jcc yesterday.. But it turn out not so height. Can u help me to find whats wrong with it??? The buttom of the cake layer not so springy like the top,
    How to mix the cream cheese batter with egg white batter?is the egg white batter into cream cheese batter or the opposite?thx 4 ur help... I'm going to bake dis jcc for my daughter 1st bday, so must make it right.n what type of frosting did u recommend? Sorry for a bunch of questions...•"̮• τнänκ чoü •"̮•

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  73. Anon:
    - If bottom layer is not springy like the top, that means you did not fold the egg whites with the cream cheese mixture properly.

    - It's stated very clearly in the recipe
    "3. Add the cheese mixture to the egg white mixture and fold well." Cheese to whites. I don't know how to be clearer than that. Sorry.

    - As for frosting, I would recommend you google for fresh cream frosting. It's a light cake, so a light fresh cream frosting would be best, in my opinion.

    Good luck.

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  74. Hi there

    I just found ur blog yesterday and decide to try making this cake tonite. It all went well until the end (which means everything) 1) the top doesn't go brown after I remove the foil for the last 10 minutes even add extra 10 minutes after. 2)the cake shrink especially the edges. I leave it in the oven with close door for 1 hr because it's winter at moment so I let it cool down inside.

    I probably will make it again but take the foil in the last 20minutes to make the top brown.

    thanks for sharing this recipe and the tips too, the taste was awesome despite the shrinking look :p

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  75. Hi, it's me again :p

    did you turn the cake upside down in the pics? because my one is brown at the bottom but not so much on the top. I try to cut my cake square like yours but it not as good looking >.<

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  76. hahahaa... sorry pls don't take any offense.

    I'm still trying to figure out why does my cake shrink :p and the top doesn't go brown.

    once again thank u for this wonderful recipe, have a good weekend!

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  77. mine failed miserably. the top looks like ji dan gao, its dense and cotton like cheese. could it be too much water? so it looks like steamed cake

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  78. Your photo and tips are even greater than some recipe books!

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  79. Hi, I tried to bake the cake today and I followed exactly the listed steps (I only substituted the corn flour with all purpose flour). The baking turned out ok but once I left it to cool in the oven with the door slightly ajar, the sides and the top shrunk. The bottom of the cake is slightly harder. The texture of the cake is ok though. Any idea what could have gone wrong?

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  80. Hi, I tried this recipe yesterday n followed closely to the tips. The cake texture turned out soft except that the top and sides shrunk quite a lot and the base of the cake is harder. Any idea what could have gone wrong? The only difference is I subsituted corn flour with all purpose flour. Thanks and hope to hear from you.

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  81. breadmum: Too much water in what? The oven or the recipe? As far as I know, this recipe is tried and tested by many, and is very sound. I am not sure why yours turned out like steamed cake? Sorry.

    Jean: I can only suggest that next time, maybe you could let it cool in the oven w/o opening the door for say, 10mins first? I am not sure why the bottom is slightly harder. Were you using a dark coloured pan? Is your oven temperature accurate? There are so many variables in baking ...

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  82. Hi Ju, thanks for your reply! That's what my husband suggested to me that next time I shld leave it inside the oven w the doors closed till cooled. The color of my pan is dark though, the texture of the cake base is hard n almost like a skin. The rest of it has a soft n moist texture, resembles that of a cotton cheesecake!

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  83. Hi Ju,

    Thanks for you amazing recipe & tips. this was what it gave me 2 days ago.
    http://garcondecuisine.wordpress.com/2011/08/02/the-very-un-american-japanese-cheesecake/

    <3 youre such an inspiration.

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  84. Hi!

    Just wanted to say thanks for the recipe and tips - they turned out really well and now we have to watch out for our waistline! ;)

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  85. Hi Ju,

    Love your blog, glad to see you are posting a lot again!

    I really want to try this recipe but in cupcake size. Do you have any tips for that? You had a previous post http://www.thelittleteochew.com/2010/06/japanese-souffle-cheesecake.html
    Did you find a way to stop the little cupcakes from shrinking too much? And would you recommend this recipe or the previous one (which has similar ingredients but half the quantity).

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  86. Anon: I think you have to use those very firm/stiff muffin holders (not the soft paper type), where the rims are the same circumference as the base. This will help support the cakes better. I would recommend this recipe. The texture is firmer and more suitable for cupcakes, esp if you intend to top with frosting.

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  87. Thanks for all the tips - will the amount of water in the 4 tart be sufficient for 1 hr+ baking? If not, I'll have a problem topping up the water.

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  88. I've been following your blog for quite some time, love all your recipes!

    I tried to bake a cheesecake today and it came out very moist (slightly wet). What do you think I did wrong? I put the bowls of water on the side like shown in your picture and not directly under it.

    Is the cake suppose to be very light? Mine is a bit heavy although it tastes very good.

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  89. Is the temp you use here for a fan assisted oven? Love the recipe and photos btw

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  90. Hello Ju, I've tried this cake again and again.. and it still sinks..
    1) I've made sure I folded the white and yolks bater thoroughly, 2) I do keep the door ajar before removing it from the oven. Could you please help where else I could have went wrong? It tastes wonderful though..! Thank you so much!!

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  91. Do you think this recipe can be modified for green tea japanese cheese cake??

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  92. Awesome blog. Thanks for all the tips! =)

    I just made this and am waiting for it to cool. I think there may have been a typo.

    #3. says to add egg whites to cheese mixture in your instructions in this post. =( instead of cheese to eggs.

    Unfortunately, I did whites to cheese. I'm still waiting and hoping it still turns out good.

    May want to edit and correct this post.

    I will be attempting this again. It looks too delicious not to succeed in making.

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  93. I tried the recipe. It tasted really good. But the cake always collapse. I follow your direction to leave it inside the open with door slightly open. But it was not even puff up during the process.

    Thanks

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  94. Hi Ju,
    Its no wonder why this is one of your famous post! I tried baking it yesterday and it turned out great! perfect in fact !! I was so happy! Thank you so much for posting this recipe and to be so generous with the tips!

    Chen

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  95. Can i ask a simple qn?

    Do i use those 2 in 1 oven (microwave and oven) convec mode
    or a normal oven to bake this cake?
    If its latter, do i heat bottom only or both top and bottom?

    Thanks.

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  96. Anon: Hi! No type: adding whites to cheese is correct. The method of making this cake is very much like making a chiffon cake - you always fold the fragile whites to the yolk mixture. Same in this case. I noticed in the original recipe that it was cheese to whites ... and it's something I don't agree with, so I made that correction in my blog. HTH!

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  97. Dewei: I have only used one oven and that is the regular electric kind. I think it should be top and bottom heating. The reason why I say, "I think" is because I turn on the oven and it is all systems go. My oven is so basic I don't have any functions apart from temperature and timer.

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  98. I just tried making this today, and while I'm unsure of if it was because I used normal flour and only 200g of cream cheese (my mom accidently bought too little) it kinda fell flat (but that could be due to the springform I used) and.. what is it supposed to taste like? I only let it rest in the oven for 30min, and took a taste after that thought of well.. something along the lines of batter pudding. Cream cheese fault? Or just our very very old oven (don't even have a timer)? Thanks!

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  99. Hie Ju,

    Thank you for sharing the recipe and tips.

    I tried my 1st attempt before reading your blog.
    NOw my 2nd attempt is soooooo much better but just have a few doubts:-

    Y my cake sink after cooling? but the texture is jus soooo fine and soft...

    Also, during baking i had wonderful puff up like chiffon cakes. but after cooling it collapse.

    please advise!
    thank you Ju..

    Cindy..

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  100. Hi Ju,

    Please advise should we pre-heat the bain marie before baking?

    Thanks.

    CW

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  101. Hi Ju,

    I understand your job is not replying the questions that we have but I really need some help here. I follow every steps that you listed. The cake came out fine but after an hour I left it in the oven with door ajar, my cake started to shrink and have really ugly shape, totally not as good as yours. I am not sure why.... T_T

    Thanks in advance for your help and reply :)

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  102. mine too collapsed. was nice and high but after it cooled it was about half the size. how far do you leave the oven open ajar? Bottom was also a bit soggy despite 2 layers of foil (I put it in a water bath)...

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  103. Zoe/Anon: Did you use the specified cake tin size? The right size matters. Try beating your egg whites a little stiffer next time too. Hmmm ... cake shrinking seems to be a very common problem among readers who tried this recipe, I notice. I don't quite know why your cakes didn't turn out as you wanted it to ... don't feel so bad. Maybe with a bit more practice, you will get it right.

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  104. This recipe is awesome! I've made it 3 times and love it. My latest was for Chinese New Year. I used a whipped cream cheese icing which worked very well. Thanks for sharing :)

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  105. Hi Ju, can I check w you, if I want to make it using 10 inch tin, how many times should I multiply this recipe by? I'm using removable base tin. After cooling in the oven, how do I transfer it nicely for cooling? I always fail at transferring and cutting it nicely like yours x(( thank you very much! :)

    Claire

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  106. mommyingaround: GREAT! :D

    Claire: If I increase a recipe, I usually increase by 50% or 100%. For a 10-inch tin, I really don't know ... As for using removable base, yes of course you can transfer once it's cooled down a while in the oven. I do that too. You have to be very careful though. And a steady but gentle hand helps a lot. :)

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  107. Okay. Can I check w you, for your current recipe, the batter fill how much of your tin? Like that I can estimate the amount to fill the 10inch (: sorry, so I cool it in oven first then invert it onto cooling rack correct? Thank you so much!

    Claire

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  108. Claire: About 2/3 of my pan. And you DO NOT invert the cake. You slide a thin knife under the base and gently edge the cake onto a rack laterally. It comes with practice ...

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  109. do you use corn starch or actually corn flour? cornstarch is different from actual corn flour but it's mistaken as cornstarch before.

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  110. Anon: I don't know where you're from, but where I live (ie, Singapore), it's called "corn flour". That's what I used. In America, the same thing is called "corn starch" or "cornstarch". What is "corn starch" to your knowledge then?

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  111. Just made your cake for the second time.

    The first time I made it, it shrunk quite a lot, but even so it became one of our favourite cakes here at home :)

    This second time, I used 2 smaller tins instead of one and I gradually reduced the oven's temperature instead of turning it off (it's winter here in Portugal, and my oven is a mini-oven, so the temperature drops too quickly, I suppose). And this time it turned out much better :)

    Thanks for your recipe e especially for your tips!

    Paula

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  112. Hi, I made this cake today. Even after baking for 1 h 40 mins, the bottom was still wet. Is the texture supposed to be a bit wet, or completely dry like a sponge cake?

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    Replies
    1. Hi cafejoie, the texture should be moist, melt in your mouth texture. It is not as dry as a sponge cake. Perhaps your mixing was inadequate. Try mixing the 2 batters using your hand (yes!)and it works really well.

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    2. cafejoie: It's a cross between a sponge and a regular cheesecake. And as you can see from my photos, the cake is not wet at all.

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  113. Hi Ju,

    I baked this cake today n it is my 3rd attempt. The first 2 attempts, my cakes shrunk so badly even though i already followed ur tips n tricks to the T, but today the top of the cake didn't shrink so much, i thought it'd come out perfect just like yours, but the sides were so wrinkles. Can u tell me what i did wrong? Can i send you the picture through your email so you can see for yourself? But the taste never fails me though! Thanks, Ju! ;)

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    Replies
    1. Just keep trying. Obviously you are getting better! The sides shrinking is a very common problem, looking at the comments I get. Sorry, but I definitely can't diagnose the problem(s) from a photo.

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  114. Dear Ju, many thanks for your tips which were very effective. I attempted this cake 6 or 7 times, all failures until I tried your method. Yesterday evening the cake turned out beautifully but it still shrank a bit at the sides - the cake looks like it has a waistline. However the texture was just right. Will definitely try again till I perfect it. Thanks again for sharing.

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    Replies
    1. Did you use the correct size cake pan?

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    2. Yes, 8 inch pan (removable bottom) with high sides and wow the cake rise very high but did not spill. But ooppss....I ran out of baking paper and did not line it. Could that be the cause ? Simone.

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    3. Hi Simone, it does. Try it next time with a lined & greased pan. I think you're getting there!

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  115. Hey, I have tried to make this cake last night and it totally failed. It came out all wet and soaky and tasted like cream cheese bread pudding. I have bake it for 2 hrs because it always seem like its uncooked and not raising for some reason and the sides is not even browning. I have no idea where I went wrong. I have blended the whites on high speed for 5 mins and made sure its standing up, so shouldn't the cake be at least raising... or I need to add in baking powder? please help me, I m so disappointed right now..

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    Replies
    1. No, there is absolutely no need for baking powder, because if there is, it would be in the recipe, wouldn't it? I honestly have no idea why your cake come out pudding. My only guess is, if you needed to bake for 2 HOURS (!!!), I am guessing your oven is not working properly and therefore the temperature is inaccurate.

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    2. I m using a small toaster oven and I had been doing all my baking from simple cake to new york style cheesecake and it was all fine. I m not sure why this cake failed on me. I have left my failure in the fridge over night and I just tried it, now it taste more like a lightened bubbley new york cheesecake. Its not cakey like the one in your picture. This is the first time I bake a cake without baking powder, and I have never attempted to make a sponge cake of any sort before. So this is totally new for me. It will be good to find out where I did wrong....I was guessing my folding was bad...when I was folding, i can hear bubbles popping from the egg white, does that mean I m deflating the whites???

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    3. Ahh, now the details are out. :) (1) I cannot comment on whether a toaster oven works for this cake because I don't use one. But the fact is, it works in a regular electric oven. (2) It's your FIRST TIME baking this, so I really think you should go easy on yourself and not be so disappointed. Let's be realistic, even the most experienced bakers have disasters, so what more a first-timer! (3) Yes, from what you described, you were definitely deflating the egg whites, hence the pudding-like texture. I don't recommend you try this cake again until you can bake a regular sponge cake. You need to be able to recognise medium peaks from stiff peaks (for egg whites), "ribbon stage" as well as master the art of folding. Only then should you try making this cheesecake. But good try, anyway!

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    4. Dear FF, as you can see, there are many broken hearts when it comes to this cake. But Ju is so supportive of all of us. She's really wonderful. May I suggest a method for folding the batters ? I am not sure if Ju would approve. Pour the egg yolk batter into your egg whites batter and fold the batter using your hand, yes your bare hand (wash first please!). I use this method for my pandan chiffon cake and I find it very effective. The reason I pour the yolk batter into the whites (and not the other way round) is because the yolk batter is heavier. If I do it the other way round I find it difficult to mix as the heavy batter tends to stick at the bottom. Don't give up. I was and am still obsessed with this cake and have tried it 6 or 7 times already, the final one significantly improved after following Ju's tips. Try again, ok? Simone.

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  116. Hi Simone, I like the fact that you tried and tried to get it right. This is the 1st time I have heard of folding with your hand, and it really intrigued me. So I googled and realised that there are cakes made using this method (I suppose long before we had spatulas and spoons, people probably did everything by hand!) ... and this was one such recipe: http://www.cookstr.com/recipes/1-2-3-4-cake
    The reason for adding whites to yolks is because the former is lighter and more fragile, so when you add the heavy mixture to the lighter one, you might destroy more air bubbles than necessary. I have tried both methods - yolks to whites, and also whites to yolks - and both times nothing bad happened. But I prefer to preserve as many air bubbles as possible. ;) Anyway, it's great that you shared your experience. I learn as much from my readers as they learn from me. So, thank you!

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  117. Hi thanks for the recipe! Tried it at home ytd and it came out great! the pointers u gv was really helpful. Looking forward to trying more of ur recipes! Cheers

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  118. Hi, I was planning to make this and was wondering if it can be baked in a NordicWare bundt pan (Heritage). Thanks.

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  119. Hi Ju

    do you fold with a balloon whisk or rubber spatula or wooden spoon?
    thanks!

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    Replies
    1. With a spatula. I don't think you should use a whisk for folding.

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  120. Why did my cake burnt at the bottom and side too? Notice that your cake only brown on top? Could it be I use a dark colored pan? Thanks you!

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    Replies
    1. Wow, burnt at the top and sides?? I think it must be the pan. I always use a light-coloured one. Did you line it?

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  121. I baked this yesterday and I'm pleased to say that it turned out well, thanks to your tips and tricks. Thanks!! : ))
    -J

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  122. hi Ju
    if i have a non stick springform pan - can i dont line it with baking paper?? the baking paper seems to deform the shape of my cheesecake when it start shrinking after it has cooled down

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    Replies
    1. I'm sorry, I really can't answer your question because I honestly don't know. BUT if you do, please let me know whether it works!

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  123. i baked mine few days ago and it turn out perfect, but i couldn't cut it like you did in the picture. did you heat the knife first or how did you cut your cake??

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    Replies
    1. No, I did not heat it first. The type of knife matters. I use a very thin blade.

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  124. Helloo
    Last night i found this recipe and i baked one this afternoon
    And after baking it for about 1 hr 10 mins and waiting for 1 hour, i found the bottom of the cheesecake was still a little bit wet
    is it suppose to be like that?or i baked it wrong?
    Thanks :)

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  125. Hi Ju, I tried this cake yesterday. The result was excellent !!! So delicious and the texture is just nice. Btw, we love it chilled. YUM!! Many thanks Ju.

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  126. Looks good!! May I know which cream cheese are you using?

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  127. Hi Ju, I'm trying out your recipe this Sat & would like to clarify on step 1. Do you use the folding method when combining the cooled mixture with the flour, salt & egg? Thanks.

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  128. Hi Ju, I tried your recipe yesterday but I failed.. The cake didn't raise at all & very dense (just like the reg cheese cake lol). I follow your tips except I made a very dumb mistake when I forgot to add cream of tartar. Later, when I fold the whites to the yolks n cheese.. Big egg white lumps appear n difficult to remove so I have to fold so many times until the batter become too watery. Was that the problem? I've read that some people using whisk instead of fold. ��Thanx..���� for your answers.
    -Imelda-

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  129. Hi Ju,

    I am going to try this recipe for a party to introduce everyone to japanese cheesecake, can it be baked ahead and stored in the fridge or would that alter the taste/texture?

    Many thanks, Jess

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    Replies
    1. Hi Jess, no it won't. In fact, I love when it's served cold! :)

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    2. JU, thanks i shall try your recipe! yummy

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  130. Ju, thank you for sharing this delicious recipe! It is indeed better when it's cold :-) I followed this recipe exactly and it turned out really well, this is definitely a keeper and I shall start trying other cake recipes you have.

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  131. HI--WITH ALL THE COMMENTS MY GUESS IS THIS CAKE IS EXCELLENT. TECHNICAL PROBLEMS MAY BE WITH HOW THE EGG WHITES ARE WHEN FOLDED. A DARK PAN WILL BE HOTTER AND CAUSE CAKE TO POSSIBLY BURN OR IF YOUR OVEN RACK IS TOO HIGH OR LOW TO THE COOKING ELEMENT. SOMETIMES IT TAKES A FEW ADJUSTMENTS. OVEN TEMP. COULD BE OFF. MOST CHEESECAKES NEED A WATER BATH. ALSO, IF YOU CAN REFRIGERATE OVER NIGHT THE CAKE WILL SLICE EASIER. KEEP WORKING ON IT YOU WILL HAVE YOUR OWN THINGS THAT WORK FOR THIS CAKE.

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  132. Yummy, it looks fantastic!!! I have to try your recipe for sure! The japanese cheesecake recipe I have doesn't make the cake look as fluffy! I'm going to definitely follor your tips ;)

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  133. Hi there, I hope this isn't going to sound dumb, but I still have to ask! I just baked the cake, and I think the texture and all turned out fine. Just that it probably sank and looked a little crinkly on top and sides. Sides because of my lining. Should I be lining the papers separately from the bottom lining? Cause when I just push the paper into the pan, the sides actually don't sit well. Should I be cutting the round sides separately and then place it in? Many thanks!!

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    Replies
    1. Oh, absolutely separately! You can check http://www.deliaonline.com/how-to-cook/baking/how-to-line-a-cake-tin.html on how to line cake pans. You can't just push the paper into the pan. :) You also need to grease the pan first (rub butter all over), so that when you line, the paper will stick. Kudos for getting the texture right, though!

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    2. Oh today! Today i woke up to the chilled cake and I think it has actually turned harder! :( now I'm not sure if it's right anymore. Wish you could test it for me haha. Btw, dense means its hard right? I think mine isn't as soft and fluffy. Maye I should try again. Suddenly I have no idea how such cakes should taste like. Hahahaha.

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    3. Leave your chilled cake out for a short while. Dense is not hard. Dense just means not light or fluffy. For example, a rich chocolate cake (dense) vs a chiffon cake (fluffy).

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  134. Hi Ju! I have recently started baking because of my two pre-schoolers. I originally wanted to make new York cheese cake but figured that more people in my household ( including my kids) would prefer jcc to nycc.:) I found this jcc recipe on your blog ( fantastic jcc pic, I muz say) n tried baking it today.
    It was baking so well in the oven n the aroma was just so beautiful... Thought I have nailed it at my first try just like the other sponge cake n scones that I have made. Well, guess what? The cake shrank after cooling n when I tried the jcc, it tasted like egg tart !! Hahhaa....There were many new steps for me in this recipe and I may have gone wrong in more than one area but I m going to find out more and keep on trying till I succeed! Tx for the recipe n tips!

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  135. Hi Ju, I was just wondering, the first time I tried making this, I feel it's kind of dense. What is the right kind of texture I should try to achieve?
    Thanks!

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  136. Hi Ju, I tried the recipe for the 3rd failed attempt. It rose very quickly in the oven until i fear it would almost touch the roof of my oven, I think it over-rose. Then after cooling, it sunk down to a wrinkled mess and was quite dense. The oven temperature should be correct according to the baking thermometer i had inside. My only guess is the whipping of the egg whites as I'm not very good at it. I can't really tell what sort of 'peak' it is.

    Can you tell what went wrong? Thanks!

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    Replies
    1. Hi Sharon, it could be the egg whites. Without beating it sufficiently, there won't enough air bubbles to give structure to the cake and support it, and so the cake flops. However, it could also be the result of overfolding - the air bubbles get destroyed and the cake also flops. This slideshow is a good guide for beating egg whites: http://sweets.seriouseats.com/2010/02/how-to-beat-egg-whites-baking-meringues-chiffon-cakes-souffles.html Hope this helps!

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  137. Thanks Ju! tried it for the 4th time, slightly better. It doesn't shrink as much but it's still denser than the store bought ones. Will continue with 5th attempt... :P

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  138. Hi may I know which brand of butter-salted or unsalted and milk for this Japanese cheese cake

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    Replies
    1. Hi, any brand. I have used so many brands of butter and it really doesn't matter. :)

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  139. Hi Little Teochew, I really like your cheesecake recipe, however I do not have an oven at home. Therefore can I steam the cake instead of baking it? Is there any step in your recipe I need to alter in order to suit a steaming cake? Thanks!

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    Replies
    1. Hi! Sorry, I have no idea! Never tried, but I really don't think it can be done ...

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  140. Just made some and it was WONDERFUL. Just some questions:

    1. How do you keep the CHEESECAKE BATTER while waiting for the 1st batch to bake? Always having trouble as the 2nd batch is not as FLUFFY as the 1st?

    2. Any tips on creating the designs you see on the top of the cheesecake like those in the shops?

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    Replies
    1. Hi!

      1. The batter cannot keep. It should be baked immediately. The 2nd batch would have lost a lot of precious air bubbles during the waiting.

      2. Ah, sorry I have no idea! :p

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  141. Hi! just want to ask.. after the water of the water bath evaporates, do i need to add in more water?

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    Replies
    1. Hi, depends at what stage of baking? You should ensure there is enough water so that you don't have to open the oven for refill, as this may affect the baking process (eg, cake may sink). HTH!

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    2. cause when i baked for 1hr 15 mins.. the cake was not ready as the toothpick was stick with mixture and i realised the waterbath has dried up. so i added more water.. in the end. the cake was somehow considered done after 2 hours after i increased from 160-170 deg after 1hr15mins.

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    3. Oh. so that means i have the ensure that there's water in the oven during the whole baking process?

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    4. Thank you so much for the great tips and tricks. You let seem everything so easy! I'm baking this cake just right now. When it shall be ready I'll let you know about the result.
      Greetings from Italy.
      Victoria

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  142. Hi Ju,
    Tried this recipe twice, came out same problems.
    Firstly, the cake shrunk, and secondly bottom has a few mm of dense pudding, however the rest part of the cake was fluffy and top without crack and brown nicely.
    I used my muffin pan as water bath by filling hot water into it and put it one rack lower than my cake.
    I used 13in x 9in cake pan, is it not suitable?
    I fold egg white into batter for about 3 mins using spatula until i started to see some air bubbles breaking at the surface, then i stopped.

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    Replies
    1. Hi Sanny, just to clarify, did you use a square pan (13" by 9")? If yes, please switch to a round one. I think you are almost getting it right.

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  143. Thanks for the tips and tricks! This will be a great help for a novice like me :) I'll try this cake today for the first time.
    Victoria

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  144. Thank you for the recipe and tips! I followed accordingly and the cake came out well and delicious. My mom loves it!

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  145. Hi i want to ask about the baking method.. Do you use the top burner or down burner? or both of them?

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  146. You rock!!! I love the individual packaged servings of cheesecake at the asian stores and can't wait to try this! I noticed on one brand that a small amount of cheddar cheese is in the recipe...maybe finely grated to amp up the cheesiness? This would be a wonderful savory dessert with fruit, if made with a touch of savory cheese. -- Love, Chizu

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  147. Hi ju I tried baking this twice but both times failed. Super sad! Both times the cake "sank" in the middle. Top half was soft but bottom half rather dense. Any idea what went wrong? Can I also check if the temperature was for fan-forced oven?

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  148. Hi Ju,

    just wanna check. if i wanna use a 6" cake tin, and i'm halving the ingredients, do I half the baking time as well? or it has to be the same?

    thanks

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  149. Thank for the recipe!It's very delicious,I love it :)

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  150. Hi, really perfect recipe and explanation
    I love it so much
    thank you
    yann

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  151. Hi, do u think i can use a chiffon tube pan for this recipe? And without greasing or lining it, will it help it to rise, jz like how a chiffon cake clings to the sides of the pan while rising? Thanks. Ying

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  152. Hi. I tried your cheesecake yesterday evening and I must admit, it tasted great! But the only problem I faced was that my cake didnt rise at all. Even though it wasn't wet or pudding-like; it was a bit dense not feathery light. The cake was at the level of the batter that I had poured in the tin. Can you please tell me where I went wrong? Thanks

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  153. hi there,

    i can bake pandan chiffon cake quite well, but when i bake a cheesecake which recipe similar to urs, i failed to make it looks spongy and fluffy. it is quite dense and rich. i use only 1 block of 250g of cream cheese, 60g of butter, 120 dairy whipping cream. it turn out quite cheesy. i think i also dont like lemon taste, but too late i put too much lemon juice. about juice from one lemon...seriously i still havent grasp the method to beat whites for cheesecake, my friend msg me telling me this as follows

    When beating egg whites, u start w fast speed...when going to soft peaks,u switch to low speed for a few mins so that it can stabilise the air bubbles in it

    really couldn't understand..at least the pandan chiffon cake recipe got stated how long per session..when to put in sugar and cream of tartar..

    so i was wondering was there any detailed info on beating the egg whites.

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  154. Can you freeze it after it is baked and cooled?

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  155. Hello! Just one question regarding this recipe, does the egg yolk have be be whisked lightly before folding into the cheese mixture?

    Thankyou!!

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  156. Hello,

    I'm going to try out this recipe today but I just have to make sure a few things. Do you have to fold in the ingredients all at once? Also can the corn flour and cake flour be sifted before folding it in?

    Thank you!!!!

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