How to Make Authentic Italian Cheesecake
Most cheesecake made in the United States is made from cream cheese. Italian cheesecake is made from ricotta cheese which gives it a lighter, creamier texture. The following is an old traditional recipe that is truly Italian and truly delicious.
- 3 lbs. whole milk ricotta cheese
- 8 separated eggs
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup rum (optional)
- 1/4 tsp. orange zest
- Graham crackers for crust (follow directions on box) (optional)
- powdered sugar
- Separate the egg whites and yolks into 2 mxing bowls.
- Mix ricotta, egg yolks, sugar, vanilla, rum and orange zest in a large mixing bowl until smooth.
- Beat the egg whites with a whisk or electric hand mixer until light and fluffy. Gently fold the egg whites into the mixture until thoroughly blended.
- Grease the entire inside of the springform pan with butter. If you opt for the graham cracker crust, cover the bottom of the pan with no more than a 1/4-inch crust.
- Pour the mixture into the springform pan and place it into a 350 degree oven. Bake for 1 hour. Turn off the oven and let the cheesecake set in the oven for another hour.
- Remove the cheesecake from the oven and gently loosen the sides with a knife or spatula. Remove the springform pan and liberally cover the top of the cheesecake with powdered sugar. Serve at room temperature. Chilling the cheesecake for a long period of time will cause it to dry out.