Simple, creamy, delicious cheesecake got it’s start in the U.S. around 1929 from the legendary Turf restaurant. The restaurant was owned by Arnold Reuben Jr. After winning the gold medal in the 1929 World’s Fair for the first and only cheesecake, the secret got out. Soon it became an American legend, almost as legendary as apple pie. Interestingly enough, Reuben was of Jewish decent, hailing from Germany. Is there a connection to the German version of cheesecake? Yes, there most definitely is. The biggest difference between the two is the type of cheese used.
In the German recipe, they use Quark, which is hard to define by American terms. It’s not a yogurt, it’s not a ricotta, but it’s something in-between. As we know, in the American version, we rely solely on cream cheese, eggs and sugar. The finale as we say, is the top layer of sugar and sour cream. Yup, it really is that simple. I salute you, Arnold Reuben Jr for not only taking a fine recipe and making it legendary, but you also gave America something to brag about.
Cheesecake has made its way to the top of the Thanksgiving dessert list and tables year after year. Every American knows cheesecake, and I have yet to meet one who doesn’t love it. There’s been restaurants named after this dessert and let’s not deny that we all tend to love cheesecake a bit more the next day. Even though this American staple has been around for almost one hundred years, it’s the first time I every tried making it. Was my version deserving of the gold medal in the World’s Fair?
Simplest Creamy Delicious Cheesecake
For the Crust
- 1 1/2 cups petite burre or grahm crackers, crushed
- 3 TBS sugar
- 1/4 cup butter melted
For the filling:
- 16 oz cream cheese
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 3 medium eggs
- 1 pint sour cream for top layer
- 1/4 cup sugar for top layer
For the crust
- assemble all your ingredients. yes, there are only a few, but it’s complicated to keep going to the fridge to get this and that.
- once all assembled, crush your crackers in a food processor until smooth
- add your melted butter
- stir up with a wooden spoon
- assemble crust into bottom of your spring form pan. use a measuring cup to smooth out the edges and ensure an even crust
for the filling:
- mix the cream cheese, sugar and eggs, one at a time, and be careful not to over-mix
- assemble the mixture and pour over the crust.
- tap the sides of the pan to help out any air bubbles that might be trapped.
Bake @ 180 C. for about 25-30 min. or until center is firm and not jiggly
- mix the sour cream and sugar
- take baked cake out of the oven, let cool for about 10 min., meanwhile, increase oven temperature to 200 C., Pour mixture over top of cooled cake.
- bake for an additional 10 minutes. Let cool then chill for at least 4 hours.