If you ask any foodie what they think the best cheesecake in the world is, nearly everyone will point to Basque cheesecake — an anti-cheesecake. It’s burnt like a well-caramelized crème brûlée, with the consistency that’s more like edible clouds than cheese. I pour my Basque cheesecake onto a layer of a crispy, buttery crust to contrast the smoothness of the cheese with the crunchiness of the chocolate cookies.
Basque Cheesecake (But Even Better)
10-inch (25 cm) springform pan
180 g digestives
3 tablespoons butter
750 g (26 ½ oz) cream cheese
1 cup (250 g) Greek yogurt
1 ¼ cup(250 g) sugar
1 ½ cup (400 ml) heavy cream
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1. Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F) with arack placed in the middle. Butter the pan, then line it with overlapping sheets of parchment.
2. Grind the cookies; stir them together with the melted butter and press onto the bottom of the pan. Bake until the edges are just starting to take on color, around 6 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely (the crust will firm up and get crispier as it cools!). Preheat the oven to 220°C (425°F).
3. Beat the cream cheese, yogurt, and sugar until smooth and fluffy. Don’t stop mixing and add the eggs, one at a time. Stir in the cream, salt, and vanilla. The batter should be smooth and very liquid.
4. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake until deeply browned with black spots all over the top and still very jiggly in the center, 35–40 minutes.
5. Let cool completely. It will collapse quite drastically as it cools. Chill in a fridge for a minimum of 8 hours. This wait ensures that the cheesecake reaches its perfect consistency. Serve chilled.
This cheesecake can be made 2 days in advance.
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