Egg Free, No Bake, Berry Good Cheesecake
Ah, cheesecake! It's an amazingly rich (read unhealthy) dessert that is a favorite in our family. One of the girls is allergic to eggs, so she's never had one. She's the reason I learned how to use xanthan gum and lecithin as a substitute for eggs. This seemed like a perfect application.
I'm pretty sure you won't miss the eggs, and I'm positive you won't miss having to bake the cheesecake. If you've ever had one curdle, this is the recipe for you.
Yields: 12 servings1 (18-ounce) package Oreo cookies
8 tablespoons unsalted butter
16 ounces cream cheese
2 cups heavy cream
1-3/4 cups sugar
½ cup berry syrup
½ teaspoon xanthan gum
½ teaspoon lecithin
1 teaspoon canola oil
Making the Crust:
Twist each oreo and remove the cream filling. Set the cream discs aside. Crush the cookies down to a fine crumb. It's ok if there are some larger crumbs. Put the Oreo filling in the microwave and heat it until it melts into a paste. No wasting here! Pour the cream back into the crumbs and work them with your hands. Soften the butter and add it to the crumbs as well. You should be able to press the product with your hands into a cohesive mass.
Press the crumbs into the bottom of a greased 9-inch spring form pan. Work the crust all the way around the bottom until it fully covers the pan.
Take the cream cheese out of the refrigerator and let it soften. Using a stand-mixer or a handheld electric mixer, whip the heavy whipping cream until it's airy and fluffy. Don't let it turn to butter!
Cut the cream cheese into chunks. In the same stand-mixer, add the cream cheese in stages to the whipped cream you've just made. This is to make sure that the cream cheese incorporates evenly. Add the sugar and berry syrup.
In a small bowl, place the xantham gum. Add the oil and whisk briskly with a small whisk or spoon. Add the liquid lecithin and continue to mix. With the mixer still in motion, add the xanthan gum / lecithin / oil mixture to the cheesecake batter. This will help set the custard.
Pour the filling into the spring form pan. Level the filling with a spatula. Place the pan in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour, but preferably 2 to 3 hours.
When you're ready to serve, run a knife around the inner wall of the spring form pan. If you don't, when you unbuckle the wall you might damage the cake. Remove the pan wall, cut, serve, and enjoy.
Xantham gum, lecithin and oil are a great substitute for eggs in many applications. Xanthan gum is a binder and lecithin is an emulsifier. Xanthan gum balls up when it comes in contact with water, so mixing it in oil first will allow you to incorporate it evenly in the cheesecake filling. I'm going to do an entire post about egg substitutes later.
If you don't want to use berry syrup, you can just cover the cake with cherry pie filling. It's a very traditional way to go.
If you like a denser, "New York" cheesecake, don't whip the heavy whipping cream before adding the other ingredients. I prefer a lighter, fluffier result.Published By: on February 19, 2009.