You guys I am so excited for the coming winter months and even more than that, I am excited for the festive season! Being a food blogger, festive season is definitely the busiest time of the year for me. Since many of us won’t be getting a chance to meet our friends and family in person this year, I have come up with the yummiest festive recipes for you all to recreate at your homes. So happy to be sharing the recipe of my Kaju Katli Cheesecake which is divine in every way.
My Kaju Katli Cheesecake is everything you want your cheesecake to be and tastes exactly like our beloved kaju katli. No festive season is complete without an overload of sweets and this cheesecake is a must for your Diwali dinner.
Kaju Katli Cheesecake: all about the festive flavors
Believe or not, kaju katli is actually only made with three ingredients. There’s a sugar syrup which is then combined with powdered cashews. As much as I love eating kaju katli, this year I thought we need to take things up a notch and that is why I decided to make a Kaju Katli Cheesecake.
Just like any typical cheesecake, this cheesecake also has cream cheese and heavy cream. This is what will add the delicious, and extremely subtle tang to our cheesecake. But to add all the kaju katli flavors, this cheesecake also has cashew paste in the smooth filling and some powdered cashew in the biscuit base.
To give this cheesecake the beautiful Indian touch, I decided to add some cardamom in the filling and some ghee in the biscuit base. Cardamom is such a fantastic spice to use. It is so aromatic and adds a lovely flavor to anything you make. That being said, it does have a strong flavor so be careful not to add too much of it or else the cardamom flavor will become too overpowering and might disturb the balance of flavors of this recipe.
The Kaju in kaju katli cheesecake
If you are wondering how I added the kaju flavor, I am here to tell you all my secrets. It is actually very simple and doesn’t require any additional ingredients whatsoever.
I incorporated cashews in two ways: cashew paste and powdered cashews. A good cheesecake is silky, it is creamy and ultra smooth. I wanted to maintain that texture while incorporating the unique cashew flavor. The best way to do that I thought was to make a smooth paste out of cashews.
To make the cashew paste, all you need to do is pulse your cashews in a food processor till they form a smooth paste. This can take upto 5 minutes. Here you need to be careful of a few things:
a) make sure to pulse and not blend continuously. If you blend, your food processor runs the risk of getting too hot and destroying the machine. b) I used plain cashews, if you want, you can roast them and then pulse. c) Pleasure don’t use salted or flavored cashews. It will definitely add an unwanted flavor to your cheesecake.
For the powdered cashews, you again just need to blitz your cashews in a food processor until they reach a fine powder consistency. Keep a close eye while blitzing. Powdered cashews can turn into paste any second and we do not want that. The powdered cashews are added in the base of the cheesecake along with crushed biscuits and ghee.
And that is it! You won’t believe the amount of flavor these two elements added to the cheesecake. You definitely need to try this out at home.
Tips to keep in mind for kaju katli cheesecake
YOUR CREAM CHEESE SHOULD ALWAYS BE SOFTENED
This is a very very important tip. It is imperative that you use softened cream cheese only. This will make sure that you can beat your cream cheese very easily and thoroughly. This is important because this is what gives the cheesecake its smooth and silky texture. If you beat cold and unsoftened cream cheese, you will have lots of lumps in your mixture and you will never reach a smooth consistency.
USE A PADDLE ATTACHMENT INSTEAD OF A WHISK
A dessert like cheesecake doesn’t require as much air as it does silkiness and proper incorporation of all different elements. This is why I would advise you to use a paddle attachment rather and incorporate everything rather than using a whisk and trying to add air to the batter.
PREPARE YOUR PAN CORRECTLY
When making cheesecakes, a water bath is a must (read next point). And because we’re baking the cheesecake in a waterbath, you need to make sure you’re baking your cheesecake in a mould with a closed base. If you’re using a spring form, make sure you are using one which locks perfectly at the base.
ALWAYS PREPARE A WATER BATH
A crucial part of baking cream cheese is baking it slowly and evenly. A water bath always helps with this. The correct way to prepare a water bath is to heat water on the stove and then pour it over the oven tray. If you add cold water to the oven tray and then put that tray in the oven, it will not do an effective job.
LET THE OVEN DO ITS JOB
My last tip to you is to be patient and let the oven do its job. Cheesecake batters are mostly liquid and this is why they take longer to bake. Don’t be tempted to open the oven door again and again and sip on some coffee while you wait for the best cheesecake to get baked.
Where to buy cream cheese from
Cream cheese is available in many local stores all over Gurgaon and Delhi. Online sites like Amazon and big basket also have different brands available. I personally love using D’lecta. Other brands available include Moos, President, and Britannia.
I know that a lot of you struggle to find cream cheese in your localities but don’t worry because I got you covered! I have an entire video showing you how to make cream cheese at home! It uses such basic ingredients which I am absolutely sure you all will already have at home.
However, if you are in no mood to make your own cream cheese but are still craving a cheesecake, you have got to try my No Cream Cheese Mishti Doi Cheesecake. You guys, it is so decadent and delicious, no one can guess it does not have cream cheese in it.
I love making and eating cheesecake and I hope these recipes will bring you and your family lots of joy during the festive season. I always love to see what you all have been baking. So make sure to share your pictures and tag my Instagram handle on them @shivesh17.
Other cheesecake recipes
Happy baking and happy festive season!
- 2½ cups (250gms) crushed biscuit
- ¼ cup (25gms) powdered cashews
- ⅔ cup (130gms) melted ghee
- ¼ cup (50gms)cashew paste
- ¾ cup (180gms) heavy cream
- 1.5 tbsp (18gms) cornflour
- 2 cups (360gms) cream cheese
- ¼ tsp (1gm) cardamom
- 1½ cup (484gms) condensed milk
- In a bowl add in crushed biscuits, powdered cashew, and melted ghee. Mix all of these till everything is coated in ghee evenly.
- Transfer the biscuit mixture to your spring form pan. Use the back of a glass to push down and cover the base of the pan with the biscuit mixture. Set it aside in the refrigerator.
- For the cheesecake filling, to make the cashew paste, blitz your cashews in a food processor till you get a smooth bowl. Set is aside.
- In a small bowl add heavy cream and cornflour and mix this till its lump free. Set it aside.
- In a large bowl add softened cream cheese. Use a spatula to smooth it out. Add in cardamom and mix well.
- Now add in the cornflour slurry that was kept aside, along with the cashew paste and condensed milk. Bring everything together till there are no large lumps.
- Bring out the spring form pan from the refrigerator and transfer the filling over your biscuit base.
- Prepare a hot water bath and put the cheesecake in a preheated oven at 170 degree C for 40-45 minutes.
- Let it cool down completely.
- Slice and enjoy!