Papa Jon’s New York Cheesecake Recipe (My mother’s recipe)
This is everything a New York Cheesecake should be. Creamy, rich, not overly sweet with a hint of lemon. It’s just about as basic as you can get.
We have been serving it at Papa Jon’s Kyoto Cafes for over 30 years.
Lemon juice or zest
Preheat your oven to 160C degrees centigrade and set the rack so that your cake pan is about center in the oven.
Crush graham crackers or cookies in a food processor, blender or with a rolling pin by placing the cookies between two sheets of cooking sheet or in a resealable plastic bag.
Cookie crumbs should look like this.
Mix together cookie crumbs, butter and sugar.
Press crumbs evenly on the bottom of a buttered spring form pan reserving two or three tablespoons for the topping. Place the prepared cake pan in the refrigerator while preparing the batter.
In large bowl, place the cream cheese, sour cream, sugar and mix with electric mixer on low/medium speed about 2 minutes or until smooth.
Add Flour and mix scraping the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed.
Add eggs one at a time on low speed until well blended. Then add a dash of vanilla and half tsp. lemon zest or half tsp. of fresh squeezed lemon juice.
Pour batter into cake pan.
Place on a tray on the lowest rack of the preheated (160°) oven and bake for 10 minutes.
Reduce temperature to 110° and bake for 25~30 minutes longer. Check every ten minutes.
Cheesecake is done when the top center of the cake is shiny and jiggles a bit when you tap the side of the cake pan. Turn off the oven. Put the cake back in the oven with the door slightly open and let it “rest” for thirty minutes. This allows the cake to cool slowly and helps prevent cracking.
Without removing the cake from the pan, run metal spatula along side of the pan to loosen the cheesecake . Refrigerate uncovered about 3 hours or until chilled; cover and continue refrigerating until you’re ready to serve.
To serve remove sides of pan leaving the cheesecake on pan bottom. Top with cookie crumbs (the traditional way) or with berries or seasonal fruit etc. Store covered in refrigerator.