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Friday, September 3, 2010

Featherlight Cheesecake

This cake really lives up to its name. Feather light :)

Another recipe from Alex Goh from his ‘Fantastic Cheesecake’ cookbook. I think I’ve made the most stuff out of this book.

Hannah the picky eater ate 4 slices of this at one go. She keeps on telling me it’s so good. And Joanna wants this cake as her birthday cake (The inside of course, outside she wants it all pink).

This cake is on the moist side. You can see why… the amount of liquid used is a lot. Actually I jacked up the whole recipe by another 25% because I had 160gm of cream cheese in the fridge and have a 9 inch square instead of a 8 inch. One mistake that I did was to retain the baking time which in the end could’ve made the cake slightly wetter than it should be because I had trouble slicing the cake. Or maybe I should’nt have jack up the milk by the same ratio of 25%. Nevermind, I don’t think this will be a one off cake. I’ll definitely make this again… for Joanna’s birthday. And she wants it heart shaped and pink. Here’s another reason to get a new pan.

Featherlight Cheesecake Recipe

250gm milk
20gm butter
125gm cream cheese(room temperature)

50gm flour
3 egg yolks
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 egg whites
1/8 tsp cream of tartar
80gm sugar
Pinch of salt
½ Tbsp cocoa powder
1 Tbsp boiling water

1. Line the base of a 8 inch square pan and preheat the oven at 150/160C.
2. In a medium sized bowl, cream cream cheese until smooth.
3. Bring milk and butter to a boil and pour ¼ of it into cream cheese and gently stir until incorporated. Pour in another ¼ the milk and stir again. Lastly pour in all the milk and stir until smooth. (At this point, prepare some boiling water)
4. Let the cheese mixture cool down and put in flour. Mix until smooth. Then put in egg yolks and vanilla. Mix until smooth.
5. In another clean bowl, beat egg whites until frothy. Put in salt and cream of tartar and beat until soft peaks. Put in sugar gradually and beat until stiff.
6. Put 1/3 of egg whites into cheese mixture and fold gently but quickly.
7. Pour the cheese mixture into the egg whites and fold until well incorporated.
8. Mix cocoa powder with boiling water until smooth. Put in a few tablespoons of the cheese batter and mix until a smooth chocolatey batter is formed.
9. Pour main cheese batter into prepared pan. Drizzle chocolate batter over main cheese batter.
10. Use a knife and cut through the batter to create a marbling effect.
11. Put pan into slightly bigger but shallower pan. Fill the bigger pan with boiling water until halfway up and bake for 50-60 minutes.
12. When cake is baked, remove from oven and release the sides of the cake from the pan immediately by running a knife between the sides of the cake and the pan. Cake will shrink tremendously but evenly. Leave it to cool down totally and chill until cold before cutting.

Please note that this cake is very fragile and must be handled very gently with much care.


  1. WOW! My favorite soft cheesecake! It's super nicely baked! I miss this a lot, hope to have a big piece now. May be I have to buy some cheese to make it soon, very craving for it :P

  2. hi wendy... saya amik resepi nih. thanx for sharing yer!

  3. Beautiful!!! It's one of the prettiest marble cheesecake I have ever seen. It also looks delicious. I MUST make it one day. :) Btw, how did you measure the one tbsp of boiling water? Thank you :)

  4. Kitchen Corner,
    Better make it really soon and post :)

    Ambik ler, halal!!

    Boil some water in a saucepan, then use the measuring spoon to take the water :)
    You can also transfer the boiling water from the kettle to a cup, then take 1 Tbsp from there.
    It just needs to be hot enough to form the cocoa paste.

  5. This cake really looks light and good - very beautifully baked! The marble effect also looks so gorgeous! I ever baked this once long time ago, but I failed, the side of the cake pass mark, but the middle part very wet & sticky. Maybe I should bake this again :) I'm thinking to reduce the amount of milk, what is your suggestion?

  6. !!! another featherlight cheesecake it so pretty and moist wendy.. i die die must make this today!

  7. Ur cake is so beautiful. It looks exactly ths same as the on e on Alex Goh's book.

    I have bookmarked this recipe for the longest time since I owned the book many years ago but since my family doesn't fancy cheesecake so I keep delaying my plan to make this. Finally I bought a block of creamcheese 2 weeks ago, I shall make this soon (when I have mood).

  8. I definitely want to make this, the cake is so beautiful... Thks for sharing the recipe ^_^

  9. NEL,

    maybe try baking it longer. But reducing 20% of the milk should be fine too.


  10. J3ss,
    Haha, die die, don't die. I don't want to be murderer!!! Hahaha.

    They won't notice the cheese in this. They will think it's just sponge cake. :) But then why eat cheesecake if can't taste the cheese, hahahaha!!!!

  11. neyeeloh,
    Oh great, don't forget to let me see the cake :)
    Send in the link so that others may see too.

  12. I too bought Alex Goh Cheesecake book but have yet to try any of the recipes yet. I prefer this type of feather light cheese than the heavy Western kind. I love how you do the choc swril. They look very pretty. I notice you used a square baking pan than a spring form pan. Do you have problem removing the cheesecake especially when this cake is really soft? For me I think I will definitely mess it up :)

  13. Your cheescake looks fantastically light and lucious. Simply divine! My kids always love this kind of cheesecake. Thanks for the recipe & have a wonderful evening.
    Cheers, kristy

  14. It looks so..... like its name : Feather. I am quite amazed when I see the recipe. So high in liquid content yet it can be so light. Probably due to the meringue eh?

    Thanks for sharing Wendy :)

    Cheers, Weng

  15. Nice baked! I really like cheese cake but can't take too much, I don't want to gain weight, hehe, but will bake for my family, sure they will love this.

  16. Gert,
    I just flipped the cake onto a baking rack, the flip onto a plate.
    Had to be really careful.


    Yeah, the liquid content is very high, and luckily the meringue is holding it up with its high sugar content.

    You won't feel fat eating this, ahahah!!!
    Feel is not the actual fact, most of the time, hahaha!!!

  17. i made this for my friend on her birthday too! but mine was now swirled nicely like yours :(

  18. ai wei,
    I found that marbling is nice when only a little bit of batter is put into the choc paste, so that the effect will be obvious.
    Dot the choc batter and swirl with knife.
    Putting the choc in lines before swirling won't have this effect.

    I learnt this from by observing the way the video shows how to to do raspberry swirl cheesecake. Maybe you can check out that website

  19. I tried making a light cheesecake once and it broke into half when I tried to remove from the pan! I have to try again.

  20. So soft and well baked! Love the fine crumbs!

  21. I am contemplating whether to make this vs the Japanese soft cheese cake. Guess looking at yours just helped me made the decision, heehee. :)

  22. TQ TQ TQ..for sharing this. I'm def. going to make this... compulsively bought some phily cream cheese..but didn't want to make jap cotton cheese, coz nobody will eat it. But with choc... it'll def be in my boys' tummies. :P

  23. okok..just a quick question, for the last bit, do u still leave the cake in the pan to cool (after running ur knife through the sides) If I lined my cake I have to take off the lining?

    Sorry..supposed to be quick..but turned out otherwise! :S

  24. I have run out of cream cheese, have not stock up yet and recently craving for cheesecake hahaha... looks so delicious!

  25. Mott,
    Oh, yes, left it in the pan to cool.
    The cake is really fragile.
    I let it freeze for a while before I took it out. You can use a springform pan and once it's cooled you can just remove it, but I used a regular pan so had to freeze for a while ;)

  26. Hi Wendy,
    I tried your recipe today and it was so delicious and lovely. Thanks for sharing!!!

  27. It's so wonderfully done! It really really looks featherlight to me! Yummy!

  28. Jess,
    Haha, then quickly grab some this weekend, and stock up!!

    Wow, you're so quick!!! Glad you liked it and it's Alex Goh's recipe, hehehe, not mine. I just shared it.

    Passionate about Baking,

  29. I love the artwork of your cake top! Indeed as its name suggests, it looks really soft and light.

  30. Hi!
    Disturb u said its liquid content is very high, if i use those bottom removable pan, n i line the bottom, will it still leak?

    hmm, or izit possible if i steam it? like steamed moist chocolate cake? XP

  31. Such a pretty cake. The swirl effect is PERFECT :)

  32. Lovely cheesecake! Light and delicious!

  33. This looks really light!! I thought it was a sponge cake when I first looked at the picture....
    And I love the marble effect you've done- I can never get my marbling to look as good as yours =(

  34. Hi Wendy
    this cheesecake looks really yummy. i have made japanese cheesecake a few times but usually will encounter the problem of it sinking once out of the oven. this cake looks so tall, did you have any problem of the cake sinking ?

  35. Busy gran,
    Thanks :)

    ice ayrez,
    There are 2 types of pans with removable bottoms.
    One is lockable, the other is loose.
    I've never used the loose one, and I think it might leak.
    Look at my Japanese Cotton Cheesecake post on how to prepare the pan, there are pics for it.
    And no, you cannot steam it.

  36. Anne,
    Thanks :) I learnt the technique on

    Petite Nyonya,

    check out's videos, you might learn a trick or 2 from it about swirling

    If you cakes sink right after it comes out from the oven, it is definately underbaked.
    But if it sinked after u cooled it, you did not release the sides for cooling, so the sides were taller than the center. These type of cheesecakes will definately shrink after cooling, and releasing the sides will give you an evenly shrunk cake. When this cake came out, the center was almost as tall as the pan.

  37. hmmmm, i've got those loose bottom ones..*not enough pans* >.<
    if i prepare it like wht u did in the japanese cotton cake, will it be okie for me to use the loose bottom ones?

  38. ice ayrez,
    Frankly, I can't be sure, but you can try, since the batter is fluffy fluffy like a chiffon batter, it could be ok. And chiffon cake pans are loose bottomed too and they don't leak.
    Let me know the outcome with the loose bottomed pan, ok ;)

  39. I love cheesecake! Especially the light ones. Thanks for the recipe. Definitely trying this one out(:

  40. oh!! this looks wonderful! i can't wait to try this recipe. Wendy, you are horrible for my waistline. heehee.

  41. Eva,
    Oh great. I've love to get some feedback ;)

    I love to fatten up the people around me.
    It's ok to binge on this cheesecake, it doesn't "feel" fattening, but feelings may not be factual. hahaha.


  42. This cheese cake is so beautifully baked. Cheese cake - my favorite too. I wanna bake this - it looks good. How I wish I can have a slice now for tea.

  43. Yummy Koh,
    I rarely see people who don't like cheesecakes, especially the light ones :)

  44. Is a SUCCESS!. haha. i followed your instruction to the 'T'. Thanks for the clear instructions. :) I half the ingredient and bake in a loaf of pan, turns out great too. :)


  45. Lily,
    Glad it worked and you liked it too

  46. hi wendy,
    thanks for you sharing. i like your blog.
    i would like to ask what kind flour did you use to bake cake? self raising flour or just plain flour with baking powder?

  47. Anonymous,
    Thank you for dropping by
    You can read about the type of flours that I use in my "ABOUT".
    The type of flour that I use is named in the recipe.
    Different recipes call for different flours.

  48. Hi Wendy,
    I made this cake last nite. We all love this super soft and moist cake.

    Thanks for sharing this recipe here.

    You mentioned you have trouble in slicing but your photo showed a very clean cut le. I am not able to slice as nice as you did.

    Also, how to get a smooth surface like yours? My cake has some cracks on the surface. After the cake cool down, the cracks become less visible.


  49. Wong,
    Glad you liked the cake.
    I really had trouble slicing the cake, and these 2 are the best among the uglies.
    Always clean the knife after each stroke, that's how I get clean cuts for my cakes.
    My cake surface is not smooth, I got a large crack too, see the pic beside the recipe.
    Try lowering the recipe by another 10C, see if it'll reduce the cracks.

  50. hi may i know what type of flour to be used?

  51. Idly Dee,
    If no specific flour is stated in my recipes, it is all purpose flour.

  52. Hi Wendy
    I baked this cake this morning, it rises up to the rim of a 8" sq cake tin but as soon as it was out of the oven it shrank to half of its original height. Will you be able to tell me where have I gone wrong?

    Thank you in advance.

  53. Anonymous,
    Oh yes, this cake tends to rise high and fall due to the high moisture content, and high aeration rate.
    Don't worry as long as it's not dense like a kuih.
    If you look at my cake that was still in pan, you can see the shrink marks.
    It will only shrink to the original height before it was baked.

  54. Hi Wendy, I do not have cream of tartar, is there any substitute for it? thanks.


  55. Julie,
    Just use 1 tsp lemon juice or 1 tsp vinegar.

  56. Hi Wendy,

    I have the Alex Goh book too and want to try baking this. I noticed you did not use the double boiler he mentioned to thicken the milk/flour mixture, does it make a difference?

    Thanks! YOur cake looks wonderful! Hope mine turns out as well.


  57. Joy,
    First of all, did you mean the other post, Japanese cotton cheesecake? The use of the double boiler is just prevent burning of the cheese. If you are careful enough and use a heavy based saucepan to do it directly over fire, it won't be a problem.
    The ultimate aim is just to heat up and melt the cheese.

    This recipe didn't cook the cheese, instead just heat up the milk and buter and pour over the cheese to melt. The flour is only added in after the cheese mixture has cooled, so it can't be having any early thickening effect.

    Hope urs turn out well.

  58. Hi Wendy, I just wanted to say you have a great blog, I bought a square pan today (to add to my pan collection :)) and I plan to make your featherlight cheesecake as a weekend treat ;) Thanks so much for sharing, I really enjoy your blog, keep up the good work!

  59. Hi

    Wow this looks so cool! Am thinking of serving this for my dinner next week (hosting a dnr at home ;p),... so Wendy, I am wondering...

    1. Can I replace the cocoa powder w/ melted chocolate instead? (I have a pack of hershey's mini chocolate chips leftover...) -- if yes, in what proportion do u recommend

    2. By flour, do u mean Plain flour or Cake Flour? Can all purpose flour do?

    I dont have a sq pan, a round tin can do too?


  60. Jo,
    round pan won't be a problem.
    flour-if no specific flour is mentioned in my blog,it's plain all purpose flour. Information can be obtained in my 'about'.
    Chocolate- Just melt about 2 Tbsp of it, and it should be fine. But.. mouthfeel might not be as good. Baked chocolate will usually taste grainier.

  61. Wendy,
    This is my third time to make cheesecake but this time also failed. After take out from oven it shrink a lot and now almost cool down I cut a little bit to eat but it quite wet. When cake need to separate egg white to whip until stiff , all of it make going to fail especially my chiffon cake .Can advise? Is it beginner will like this ?

  62. Yvonne,
    It will shrink a lot. Almost by half.
    I did write in the post itself that this cake is on the moist side.
    Chiffon cakes are quite fail proof if you whipped your whites correctly and FOLDED. Not stir. What is the problem with your chiffon cake?

  63. Wendy,
    My chiffon always fall down and also very low or wet? I already go to your orange chiffon to see step by step but still cannot get it?The peaks should fat & pointy but always in dilemma dunno my batter enough stiff or not ? Even quite tension when make it .


  64. Yvonne,
    Underbaked la.
    What oven are u using?

  65. Wendy,
    I using Fagor oven.Is it we can buy a tools to measure the oven temperature? Where can i get it?

  66. Yvonne,
    So I guess it's a built in oven, right?
    Next time, try baking it 10% longer. Sometimes, different oven works differently.
    Make sure you use the right temperature, Fan on or off makes a difference.
    You can try buying an oven thermometer, but I don't know where to get.

  67. Wendy
    Last question ,is It make cake is off fan and cookies is on fan? Thanks a lot.


  68. Yvonne,
    I always use fan for my bakes, unless I specifically say fan off, like for macarons.
    There is a difference in temperature with and without fan, just like if u on the aircond, with fan and w/o fan. Which one is colder? so, the theory applies the same to the oven, which do u think will be more intense?
    The temperature in my blogs always comes in 2, one for fan, one w/o. It's in my 'about'

  69. Wendy,

    I just make this cake for my girls as tomorrow breakfast. Hope it turn out as yours. Cheers.


  70. Annie,
    lucky girls having cheesecake for breakfast.
    I want too!

  71. Wendy,

    This cheesecake is really light but wondering why mine result is not fluffy as yours, especially the bottom part. Is this due to the temperature.The look & taste fine. My girls like it too.
    Thanks a lot & I like your blog so much.

    Luv, Annie

  72. Annie,
    If you baked this in waterbath, there's shouldn't be any undercooked base.
    I suspect you let the cake sit for quite a while before baking
    or it was sitting the in the hot waterbath for a while before you put into the oven

  73. Wendy,

    The waterbath need to be in hot water? I just put in normal tap water than place the cake inside & put it in the oven.

  74. Thanks a lot now I know where goes wrong... luv u so much for the sharing.

  75. Wwoooooooo!!!!

    My family love this to bits!!!! Sure am going to bake this again... this time, will mix cheese batter with some coffee emulco for a coffee-flavored marble... U think can do?

    Was wondering... some recipes calls for double boiling while adding in Flour, to mix over the double-boiler till mixture thickens -- even Alex Goh's original recipe does that. As well as to whip the Whites to soft peak only.

    What's the significance when the recipe calls for this extra step (particularly in the case of Double-boiling)...? And why only soft peak?

    Tx in advance!


  76. Jo,
    a double boiler will help to prevent burnt cheese, but well, I don't bother because the idea is only the melt the cheese. If one is careful enough, that won't happen. You can even do it in the microwave.
    Soft peaks is to prevent the cake from cracking. Cheesecakes are rather fragile.
    Add coffee emulco if you prefer it that way, shouldn't be a problem

  77. Hi Wendy tksalot for this recipe. Is it neceessary to strain the cheese mixture before adding to the egg mixture?

  78. Anon,
    Necessary? Hmmm... if you want to make sure the cheese mixture has no lumps then strain it. If you don't mind teeny weeny lumps then you can skip it.

  79. Hi Wendy,

    I tried this recipe last weekend. But my cake sinking once I take out for cooling. Anyway still yummy. Tks


  80. Yvonne,
    Yes this cake will shrink, and it shrinks tremendously, which is why you must release the sides once it comes out of the oven so that it will shrink uniformly.
    Glad you liked this.

  81. Hi Wendy
    What is reason that the bottom of my cake is like kueh. Tks.

  82. Anonymous,
    Did you let the cake sit in the hot water before the oven is properly preheated?

  83. hi Wendy,

    I have baked jap cheesecakes in cupcake cases before.. will this recipe be suitable for it or its a must to have a square pan?

    Thank you!

  84. Anonymous,
    You can use round pan if you want. A Square pan just makes slicing more even.
    Cupcake cases aren't so suitable as this cake shrinks a lot. Then you cakes in cupcake liners will be not so nice when it's so shrunk

  85. Hi Wendy,

    Okie! Thank you for the prompt advice! I have round spring form pan, i will use that... Njoy e mid semester break with ur kids! :) Gonna try the recipe later today.


  86. Lu,
    Let me know how it turns out :p
    Have a nice day

  87. Hi Wendy,

    if the cake separates into two layers - bottom layer jelly like, and top layer cake light, what does this mean?

  88. Alicia,
    It did not separate :)
    The cake was either undercooked, or deflated before baking.
    If you let the cake sit long before baking, the latter will happen.

  89. i tried your recipe.. the cake wasn't even fragrant.. my daugther said it tasted funny.. unlike those sold outside. had to throw it away.

  90. Anonymous,
    If you are from Western Countries, I bet you will hate this cake.
    It's very much for Asian tastebuds, very light and most of all, this is not my recipe.
    It's Alex Goh's recipe.

  91. hi Wendy ur cheesecake look so yummie...
    hope i can bake as nice as urs :)
    will try :)

  92. Hi, Wendy I just try your recipes today but turn out so moist and wet. Be cooked for 60 minutes but after 30 minutes the top is crack then i'm lower the temp to 120c. What is the problem it's need to cook longer? Pls advise

  93. Jas,
    Yes, as said in the recipe, I do find the cake tooooooo moist. But the taste is fine once you cool it properly.
    Your top heat might be very hot, when baking cheesecakes, it's always advisable to bake them on the lower racks.
    I hope you used a waterbath, 30 mins and it starts cracking seems to sound like the waterbath is missing.

  94. Wendy,
    Thank for the advised but I have use the waterbath, will try again.

  95. hi Wendy!
    Whst kind of flour did you use for this? Thanks - Gina

  96. ginavi,
    If the flour type is not stated, it's plain or all purpose flour.

  97. Wendy, wish to check with you. My girl requested this cake to make in cupcake size can it be done?

  98. Annie,
    If you made this in rigid cups, the cake will pull away in a very ugly manner.
    If you made in those crinkled liners, be perpared for a lot of shrinking.

  99. I used a loosebased 8" pan, the batter did not leak :)

  100. Hi, I only have a 9 inch sq pan, so how much should I increase the recipe?

  101. Hi, I only have a 9inch sq pan, do I need to increase e recipe by 25%?

  102. Michelle,
    Make it into a 4 egg recipe to fit 9 inch square, and jack up the rest of the ingredients by another 1/3

  103. Thank you wendy, what about the baking time and the temperature? Can I remain the same?

  104. Michelle,
    I'm not too sure about the time, exactly how much to increase.
    I'll go with another 10 mins longer.


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