About this recipe: This recipe uses amaretto liqueur. It's a creamy cheesecake with a light almond flavour.
Don't overbake: While it may look underdone, a cheesecake is actually done when the centre is still wobbly. Residual heat 'carries over' and the centre continues to cook once out of the oven.
Remove the cheesecake from the oven to cool on a rack, or simply leave the oven door closed, turn off the heat and let the cheesecake cool undisturbed for at least 1 hour. This helps prevent the cheesecake from sinking in the centre. After chilling, the once-wobbly centre should firm up beautifully!
Bake in a water bath: The most effective way to bake a cheesecake evenly without browning the top is to bake in a water bath. Since water evaporates at boiling point, the water bath will never get hotter than 100C, no matter the oven temperature. This means that the outer edge of your cheesecake won't bake faster than the centre, which can cause it to sink and crack.
Mixing matters: Make sure your cream cheese and eggs are at room temperature before mixing, or you'll end up with lumps in your cheesecake. If you do end up with lumps in the batter, give it a quick spin in the food processor for silky smooth results.
Don't forget to chill: A cheesecake needs several hours to chill and set, making it a perfect make-ahead dessert.
For more easy tips on how to make a perfect cheesecake, check out our Perfect cheesecake tips how-to guide.
I love Amaretto & wanted to make a nice cheesecake for a catered event. I made a practice cheesecake & was disappointed--the cheesecake was too dense, not enough almond flavor, and the crust was a little skimpy. When I made the 2nd cheesecake, I made a few changes when also enabled me to used a 10" springform pan, instead of a 9" pan: (1)For the crust,I used 18 crushed graham crackers, 1/4 cup sugar, 6 tbsp butter & 1/2 tsp almond extract (I'll use gingersnaps next time); (2) I used 3 8oz pkg of softened cream cheese instead of 2 pkgs;(3)reduced cornstarch to 1.5 tablespoons; (4) added 1/2 tsp almond extract to the cheescake batter; and (5)added 1/3 cup toasted slice almonds as a garnish to the finished cheesecake. Everyone loved the appearance, flavor and texture of the cheesecake. Also, baking the cheesecake in a water bath is must---no cracks! - 24 Nov 2002 (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)
I've made this cake several times, and have gotten rave reviews from it: even my mother, who usually dislikes cheesecake, loves this one. The ingredients and proportions in this recipe are perfect - don't change a thing! The baking time, however, is a problem: don't bake this only for an hour then take it out of the oven, you'll end up with a half-cooked heavy mess. I bake it for 52 to 55 minutes, *shut off the oven*, then leave the cake in for another hour and five minutes. This will cook the cake completely and prevent it from cracking while it does so. Allow the cake to cool before putting it in the fridge, and *leave it there* for a day - it'll taste divine. This cake is very light and creamy, and tastes wonderful. The recipe is definitely a keeper. - 06 Jan 2006 (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)
This recipe was very good when I tweaked it a bit based on other reviews. I didn't have all of the ingredients listed, so I made some changes. I used vanilla wafers instead of graham crackers for the crust, and Splenda for baking instead of the sugar in the crust, along with doubling the amounts of the crust ingredients. I also exchanged 8 ounces of sour cream for 8 ounces of plain lowfat yogurt, and used Neufchatel cheese instead of cream cheese. I used 1/2 cup of Splenda for baking along with 3/4 cup of sugar for the batter. I also used 1/3 cup of amaretto instead of the smaller amount in the original recipe. When baking, I used a 10 inch springform pan and baked it in a water bath. No cracking! I added an extra 5 minutes to the baking time because the extra amaretto made the batter a bit thin. After it was cooled, I made a glaze from 2 and 1/2 Tablespoons melted butter, 1 cup confectioner's sugar, 1 Tablespoon amaretto, and 1/4 cup chopped almonds. The cheesecake turned out wonderfully light and delicious! Everyone agreed that this tweaked recipe is a keeper! - 27 Aug 2005 (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)