Fine, I admit it, I’m obsessed with baking cheesecakes. But why not? One master recipe that is so versatile that you may never need another dessert recipe. I’ll take it. This Baileys cheesecake was extra special as it doubled up as my birthday cake. Probably the best one ever.
Variations with the Baileys Cheesecake
Now a Baileys Cheesecake, must have plenty of Baileys in it and sure this one did. The cheesecake is great on its own but here are a couple of variations you can try. If you’re big on coffee, dust a thin layer of coffee powder on the top after the cheesecake has set. If chocolate is your weakness, add a layer of ganache on the top before serving the cake. The pictures will tell you, I’ve tried both, although, I love chocolate more and so would recommend going with the ganache.
And if you want to master some cheesecakes, you’ll find plenty of them here.
Making the cheesecake in a springform pan or a regular tin
Although a Baked Cheesecake is traditionally made in a springform or a loose-bottomed tin, I chose to make this in a regular cake tin. Here’s why. This cheesecake is baked in a water bath, which means, you place the batter in a tin that goes in a larger tin filled with boiling water. This helps the steam to gently bake the cheesecake, similar to a steamed pudding.
Considering that you will have water all around your tin, you need to double line the springform pan, both on the inside and the outside. This ensures no water seeps into your cheesecake base. While this is definitely possible I just didn’t want to risk it.
Here’s how you can make this baked cheesecake in a regular tin and still be able to take the cake out whole. Line the base of the tin with butter paper before you make the crust.
When the cheesecake is ready to be served, run a knife around the edges of the cheesecake. Overturn the tin onto a flat base like a chopping board, tap it on the bottom to release the cheesecake from the pan. Immediately turn it over again onto your serving board, this way you have the crust at the bottom and the filling on the top.
Resting the cheesecake before serving
While the cheesecake itself will take just an hour to bake, it definitely needs a lot of time to cool and set. I find it best to bake the cheesecake at night and let it rest overnight.
Once the cheesecake has cooked, let it sit in the oven, in the water bath, until it completely cools down. This will ensure it doesn’t sink when it’s taken out of the oven. If it does, worry not, the topping will find a nice place to sit in. Once the cheesecake cools down completely, let it sit in the fridge for a few hours, even overnight if possible. This will help it set well.
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For the crust:
250 gms digestive biscuits
75 gms butter, melted
For the filling:
450 gms cream cheese
1 tin (400gms) condensed milk
2 tsp vanilla essence
1/2 cup Baileys Irish Cream Liqueur, the original
1 tbsp cornflour
To make the crust :
- Start by lining a 9 inch round tin with greaseproof paper.
- Powder the biscuits either using a rolling pin or pulsing the biscuits in a food processor.
- Add the powdered biscuits into a bowl with the melted butter. Mix using a spoon, till you have a mixture that resembles crumbs.
- The mixture should just about come together. If the mixture is too wet, add some more powdered biscuits
- Tip the biscuit mixture into the prepared cake tin, pressing the mixture all over the base and slightly on the sides.
- Let the tin rest in the fridge as you get the filling ready.
To make the filling :
- Preheat the oven to 150 C.
- Make sure the cream cheese is at room temperature. Add to it a large bowl and whip it slightly using a whisk or an electric beater
- Add the remaining ingredients for the filling to the cream cheese. Using a whisk, gently combine all the ingredients until there are no lumps in the mixture. Do not overmix.
- Pour this mixture gently over the chilled biscuit base.
- The cheesecake has to be baked in a water bath.
- To make the water bath, place the cake tin in a larger square baking tin. Fill up the larger tin with boiling water, taking care not to let water spill into the cheesecake mixture. (see picture above)
- Gently place the tin in the middle rack of the preheated oven and bake for 1 hr 15 minutes.
- When the cheesecake is done an hour later, it will still have a little bit of a wobble in the centre. Turn off the oven.
- Leave the cheesecake in the oven with the door slightly open till the cake cools completely.
- Then transfer it to the fridge to rest for a minimum of 4 hours and preferably overnight.
To serve the cheesecake :
- When the cheesecake is ready to be served, run a knife around the edges of the cheesecake.
- Overturn the tin onto a flat base like a chopping board, tap it on the bottom to release the cheesecake from the pan.
- Immediately turn it over again onto your serving board, this way you have the crust at the bottom and the filling on the top.
- You can pour some chocolate ganache on the top or dust it with some coffee powder.
- Keep refrigerated until serving time.