This Pandan Basque Burnt Cheesecake is incredibly easy to make, and wonderfully rich and creamy! It boasts irresistible warm vanilla tones and pandan flavors with a hint of coconut, and has a magnificent caramelized burnt top!
To Serve (optional): Dusting of icing sugar, toasted desiccated coconut, fresh berries or other fruit
Prep: Lightly brush extra light tasting olive oil on the bottom and inner sides of a 10-inch springform pan. Line the pan with two large sheets of parchment paper (nonstick cooking paper) in a crisscrossed fashion. Press and crease as needed to ensure that the bottom of the pan is covered. The parchment should rise at least 2 inches above the sides of pan on all sides.
Beat the cream cheese: Cut the softened cream cheese blocks into 8 cubes each. Add to a large mixing bowl along with the granulated white sugar and beat on medium speed, scraping the sides of the bowl as needed, until smooth and creamy – about 2 minutes.
Beat in the eggs: Add the eggs, one at a time, and beat on medium-low speed until each egg is fully incorporated before adding the next one.
Add the cream and flavorings: Pour in the whipping cream, and add the vanilla extract and pandan paste. Continue beating on low speed until evenly combined.
Sift in the flour: Use a fine mesh strainer to sift the flour into the bowl and mix on low speed to combine, scraping the sides of the bowl as needed, until no lumps remain and the batter is very smooth.
Bake: Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Tap the pan gently on the counter to pop any air bubbles that have formed. Bake for 55-60 minutes, or until the top is a deep shade of golden brown and has risen, but the cake is still quite jiggly in the center.
Cool: Transfer the cake pan to a wire cooling rack and allow to cool completely – about 2-3 hours. The cake will deflate and darken more as it cools. Once at room temperature, cover the top with a sheet of foil or parchment paper and refrigerate for at least 1 hour (or overnight if serving the next day).
Slice and serve: Remove the cake from the refrigerator and unmold by taking off the sides of the pan. Carefully peel back the parchment paper, and allow the cake to come back to room temperature (wait at least 20 minutes). Then slice, plate, and serve with a dusting of icing sugar, sprinkling of toasted desiccated coconut, fresh berries or other fruit if desired.
Pandan paste: This is available online or from Southeast Asian grocery stores. You can use pandan extract or essence (homemade or store-bought), but you may need to adjust the amount and add more depending on how strong of a pandan flavor you’d like this cheesecake to have. Note that depending on the brand of pandan paste, extract, or essence you use, the green color may be lighter or darker. I recommend using either Koepe Koepe or Butterfly brand pandan paste for this recipe.
Salt: Use half the amount if using iodized table salt.
If using caster/superfine sugar: You’ll need about 1 & 1/4 cup + 2.5 tablespoons.
Storing: Store the cake whole or sliced in sealed airtight container(s) for up to 7 days. It will taste best and freshest during the first 3 days.
Cheesecake flavor: The pandan flavor will be stronger and the cheesecake will taste even better the next day once the flavors have had time to develop and meld. You can store it in the fridge overnight if making a day in advance, but be careful of moisture getting into the cake. Cover the top of the cake properly with aluminum foil before storing in a sealed airtight container in the fridge.
Springform pan size: If using an 8-inch or 9-inch springform pan, the cake will be slightly thicker and you’ll need to increase the baking time by 5 minutes or so.
See post for more tips and variation ideas if you’d like to customize this Basque burnt cheesecake.