Everyone has heard of New York Cheesecake and any NYC bakery you go into, indeed any frozen dessert part of a grocery you delve around in, will have a version.
However there is a difference between a classic New York cheesecake and what many call a cheesecake. Too often you see a cheesecake swirled with chocolat3e or raspberry or laden down with fancy toppings. Delicious as these versions are, they are not the classic New York cheesecake. For instance Italian bakeries often make totally delicious cheesecakes using ricotta cheese. These cheesecakes are great but they are not the classic New York way of making them.
A classic New York cheesecake is made with pure cream cheese, eggs, sugar, heavy cream and possibly some vanilla. Some claim it isn’t the classic without the vanilla, others claim the opposite.
Cheesecake had been around for centuries before Arnold Reuben (of sandwich fame) was served a piece of cheese pie by a friend in 1929. He liked it so much he fiddled with the recipe until he came up with what today is called the classic New York cheesecake. It is baked until the top is totally or partially brown and served completely plain and unadorned. Arnold Reuben ran the Turf restaurant on Broadway and the simple, plain cheesecake soon became a wildy successful part of his menu.
The cheesecake that is currently regarded as the best possible example of the art in present day New York is on sale at Two Little Red Hens Bakery at 1652 Second Ave Btw 85th & 86th Sts. Like all the very best ones it strikes just the right balance between tart and sweet and it is very rich while at the same time having a lightness of texture. Another example firmly in the winner’s circle are Eileen’s Fabulous Cheesecake. Her shop is at 17 Cleveland Place Soho. The video is of Eileen talking about how she got left her recipe and her inspiring story of having built a business around this single claim to fame. And you can buy other great cheesecakes at Mona Lisa Pastry shoppe at 1476 86th St Brooklyn and Yura & co 1659 Third Ave at 93rd Street.