One of the things I kept seeing you could bake with the pressure was cheesecake. Sound perfect, right? You get the moisture needed for cheesecakes, and a quick bake time so you can start chilling them. Because CHEESECAKE!
I tried this three different times until I got the cook time right. I used my Grandma’s cheesecake recipe, I love it every time. I’ve done mini cheesecake bites as well as a regular cheesecake in a 9″ pie plate, but I mostly wanted to test out baking methods for the pressure cooker. And on the third try, I finally got it!
My ramekins are 3 1/2 inch diameter. I’ve seen recipes where they bake a cheesecake in a 7″ springform pan, and that would work perfectly, just a little longer cook time. My pressure cooker came with this steam rack, so I was able to layer the ramekins. There are two underneath this layer.
So there two different kinds of releases with the pressure cooker. Quick release, where you manually open the vent when the cook time is open and let out all of the steam/pressure, and then there’s a natural release. Once the cook time stops, the cooker automatically begins to slowly release pressure. Takes anywhere from 5-10 minutes. During the quick release, things get crazy and boil around and there’s lots of movement, but it’s not really adding much time on to the original cook time–the process takes less than 1 minute. The slow or natural release adds extra time on to the original cook time, but is a much more controlled, stable environment. Meats tend to do better with slow release, it allows the juices to redistribute and settle. Soups and stews I think do just fine on a quick release. For something delicate like a cheesecake, you definitely want slow or natural release. So for my 3 1/2 inch ramekins, I only used a cook time of 3 minutes. About 8 minutes to build up pressure, 3 minutes to cook, and then about 5 minutes to release the pressure slowly. No preheating the oven, no cracking the cheesecake, it was perfect! Then chill at least 3 hours, until it’s completely chilled. I made my own cherry topping, but if you’re a cheat, you can buy canned pie filling. Just don’t tell me you cheated.
- 1 1/2 c graham cracker crumbs
- 6 T melted butter
- 3 T sugar
- 1 t cinnamon
- 8 oz. cream cheese, completely room temperature
- 1/2 c sugar
- 1 t vanilla
- 1 T lemon juice
- 2 eggs, completely room temperature
- *cherry topping
- 1/2 c canned, pitted cherries
- 1/2 c cherry juice from canned cherries
- 1/2 c sugar
- 2 1/2 T flour
- 1/8 t salt
- 2 T butter
- For crust, combine all ingredients and press into bottoms of ramekins (I used five 3 1/2" ramekins).
- For cheesecake, beat cream cheese with electric mixer. Add remaining ingredients, eggs last. Beat just until combined. Place 1 c water in bottom of pressure cooker. Layer ramekins with tray or trivet. Set to steam vegetables, adjust time to 3 minutes.
- Make cherry topping by simmering cherry juice with sugar, flour, and salt. Whisk until flour is completely incorporated, simmer 1-2 minutes until slightly thickened. Remove from heat, add butter, mix until melted. Add cherries to mixture. Refrigerate until cool.
- When cheesecakes are done, let the cooker naturally release the pressure. When lid is not locked and all the pressure is released, remove lid and carefully remove ramekins from cooker with sturdy tongs. Let cool to room temperature, then chill in fridge. Top with cherry topping when ready to serve.
These can be baked in the oven at 350 degrees. Remove from oven after about 15 minutes, or once the edges have puffed up.