Prepared by: Chef Adela
This is a crustless unique presentation of a cheesecake — Basque style.
Basque Style Cheesecake with Plum Compote
New York City might be the first city coming to mind when you think Cheesecake, but after trying this recipe it might change to San Sebastian in Spain. Nestled in the western region of Basque Country is a gastronomic city –San Sebastian– that pulls in tourists from all over the world year after year. One of their greatest concoctions is a burnt, crustless cheesecake. It is baked in a hot oven so the edges caramelize and puff up. It's a showstopper of a cheesecake that's delicious and best of all easy to make!
- Medium-size cooking pot
- Electric mixer
- 10-inch springform pan
- Parchment paper
- Measuring cups
- 1 3/4 cups sugar (350g)
- 2 1/4 lbs cream cheese at room temperature (1 kg)
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 5 large eggs
- 2 cups heavy cream (480 mL)
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour (30 g)
- Plum Compote
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1 cup water
- 4 whole cloves
- 1 3- inch stick cinnamon
- 1/2 lemon zest only
- 16 large firm ripe red or black plums (remove the stems, but not the pit)
- Make the batter
- Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).
- Grease a 10-inch (25 cm) springform pan and line it with parchment paper, leaving 2 to 3 inches (5 to 7.5 cm) overhanging the top of the pan.
- In a large bowl using a handheld mixer or in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the sugar and cream cheese until smooth. (This can be done by hand as well—beat with a wooden spoon for about 5 minutes.)
- Add the salt and mix. Incorporate the eggs one by one and stir until fully incorporated. Then the cream.
- With a sifter, add the flour to the mixture and fold it in gently.
- Bake the cake
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 50 minutes, or until browned and almost burned-looking on top. The time can really vary from oven to oven, so it helps to have your eye on the cheesecake from 50 minutes forward. The center will still be quite jiggly, but the cake is ready. Remove from the oven and cool for a minimum of 4 hours at room temperature.
- Make the compote
- Meanwhile, in a saucepan large enough to hold the plums, combine the sugar, water, cloves, cinnamon and the lemon zest. Bring to a boil, stir often, and cook uncovered for 5 minutes.
- Add the plums, and bring the mixture back to a boil; lower the heat and simmer for 10 to 20 minutes, until they are tender but still hold their shape. Stir occasionally.
- Remove the pits
- Turn the heat to low and gently transfer the plums to a plate. Gently remove the pits with a fork or small tongs while maintaining the full shape of the plums. Return the plums to the syrup, stir gently and remove from heat and let cool.
- When the cheesecake and compote are cooled, top the cheesecake with the compote. While doing so, maintain the full shape of the plums.
- Remove the outer part of the springform and gently tug away the parchment paper.
- Serve at room temperature.
Parchment paper: you can cut a circle to fit the base and then cut a band of paper to fit neatly around the sides, but the more rustic and simple method is to press an entire sheet into the pan, pleating the paper where it begins to crease.