Perfect Caramel Cheesecake | Dulce de Leche Cheesecake
Delicious and caramel-y, just the way I like it!
A few years ago, I promised my friend to share a cheesecake recipe... Sorry, my friend! On the thirtieth or fortieth cheesecake (I was baking them non-stop 2-3 times a week), I had an overdose, and I have only recovered now... Apparently, I had to give birth to a child to "reset" myself :)
I call this cheesecake "inauthentic" because it is not baked in a water bath, and the sugar is replaced with caramel. Additionally, flour is added to compensate for the extra liquid.
In this recipe, I will also share with you all the secrets of making the most delicious caramel. But if you don't want to spend time making it, feel free to buy it from the store or substitute it with Dulce de Leche. If you go with this replacement you'll end up with the perfect Dulce de Leche Cheesecake.
- 150 g biscuits in many recipes, you will see Digestive biscuits or Graham crackers. In my opinion, you can pick whatever biscuits, crackers, or cookies you like, just make sure that it's not salted and doesn't have any additives like raisins or chocolate chips;
- 75 g melted butter
- 600 g room temperature cream cheese in many recipes you'll see Philadelphia cream cheese, but you can use another cream cheese; just check that in 100g of cream cheese, there is less than 35g of fat, preferably around 25g (fat content and the number of grams of fat are two different indicators, don't confuse them); also, avoid using mascarpone as it is too fatty, with about 45g of fat per 100g of product;
- 3 room temperature eggs
- 50 g (2 ½ tbsp) flour even though I do recommend adding flour especially if the caramel is too thin, in most cases cheesecake would be great even without it;
If you want to simplify your life and not make caramel, just get 240g of Dulce de Leche.
- 150 g (¾ cup) granulated white sugar the absence of impurities allows white sugar to caramelize better, and it will be easier for you to determine the readiness of the caramel by its color;
- 70 g (4 ½ tbsp) room temperature butter
- 90 ml (⅜ cup) heavy cream (30% fat)
- 1½ tsp vanilla extract
Butter for greasing the baking pan so that the parchment paper sticks to the edges of the pan.
How to easily make caramel
- cut 70g of soft room-temperature butter into cubes, it will be easier to add it to the caramel,
- put 150g of white sugar in a saucepan and place it over medium heat,
the lower the heat, the easier it is to notice and correct any mistakes;
do not stir the sugar mass; otherwise, the sugar will crystallize, and the mixture will have lumps; just place the saucepan on the stove and leave it alone;
- in another saucepan, pour 90ml of heavy cream and place it on the stove, the cream should be in a semi-boiling state; you can also warm it up in a microwave, just make sure it's piping hot;
- melt the sugar (cook caramel) until it reaches 170-200°C, if you don't have a thermometer, just watch carefully: in this temperature range, all the sugar will melt, and the mixture will turn caramel in color (lighter - more milky, darker - slightly burnt), if part of the sugar has melted, and part of it has clumped together, either gently tilt and rotate the saucepan so that the sugar is coated with caramel, or use a wooden spatula, but mix very gently and slowly; use only a wooden spatula; it won't melt, so there won't be any foreign elements in the caramel;
- start slowly pouring the hot cream into the melted sugar while stirring constantly, the mixture will foam up significantly and may start splattering, so be careful,
- reduce the heat to a minimum and cook the mixture for a couple more minutes; the temperature will drop to 130°C,
- remove the saucepan from the heat and let the caramel cool down to at least 90°C, about 5 minutes,
- add the cubed butter and stir, you can use a mixer or immersion blender; the butter should completely dissolve.
- (optional) add 1½ tsp of vanilla extract, if using, and mix well, the caramel should become homogeneous,
- (optional) if you notice pieces of sugar in caramel, strain it,
- divide the caramel into two parts and let it cool to room temperature,
you will only need half of the caramel in a few hours;
DO NOT refrigerate it, as it is impossible to decorate the cheesecake with cold caramel; to quickly wash the saucepan, just fill it with warm water and let it stand - the sugar will dissolve.
Oven and Pan
- grease the baking pan with butter and line it with parchment paper (at least the bottom, but better the entire pan).
- place the oven rack on the lower level;
- preheat the oven to 160°C.
How to make the cheesecake base
- crush 150g of biscuits in a food processor or put them in a ziplock bag and roll with a rolling pin,
- pour 75g of melted butter over the crushed biscuits and mix well,
- put the crumbs into the baking pan, spread it evenly, and press it down (otherwise, when you pour the cheesecake filling, biscuit crumbs will float up).
- before you start make sure the eggs, cream cheese, and caramel are at room temperature,
- in a large bowl, start beating 600g of cream cheese on low speed, gradually pouring in half of the caramel, do this on low speed to avoid incorporating air bubbles into the cheesecake; you can also use 140g of dulce de leche instead of the caramel, don't forget to mix it well before adding it to the cream cheese mixture;
- add 3 eggs one by one, mix thoroughly;
- (Optional) add 50g of sifted flour, continually mixing on a low speed to evenly distribute the flour in the caramel cream cheese and avoid any lumps of dough in the finished cheesecake,
- pour the cream cheese mixture into the baking pan over the pressed down crumbs,
- tap the pan gently on the table to bring any air bubbles that may be in the mixture to the surface.
Baking and Serving
- place the cheesecake in the preheated oven,
- after 30 minutes, check if the center of the cheesecake trembles like jelly; if the cheesecake is still liquid inside, let it bake for another 5 minutes and check again,
- once the cheesecake is done, turn off the oven, slightly open the door, and leave it there for at least 30 minutes, or even until the oven cools completely; a sudden temperature change can cause cracks on the surface (but this will nicely cover the layer of caramel);
- refrigerate the cheesecake for at least 3 hours, or overnight if possible,
- remove the cheesecake from the pan, decorate with caramel or dulce de leche, and enjoy!
if the caramel has hardened, gently reheat it in a double boiler or microwave;
dulce de leche tends to be quite thick, so to decorate the cheesecake with dulce de leche: add 1 tbsp of heavy cream to 100g of dulce de leche, constantly stirring until the mixture resembles sour cream; your cheesecake topping is ready;
a wet knife will help you cut the chilled cheesecake evenly ;)
Published , updated