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Japanese Cheesecake with Ginger White Chocolate Ganache

oooh, the Japanese Cheesecake.
ever so hard to master the perfect cake, 
ever so delicious when you get it almost right.
and if this is almost right…i’m good with that…for now.
covered with a GINGER WHITE CHOCOLATE GANACHE…
it’s a whole new ball game…

on it’s own the cake is fabulous, light and airy, but matched with the rich ginger chocolate ganache it makes an even more fabulous decadent dessert…perfect for any special occasion.


this particular recipe is baked in a round spring form pan, but i think it is traditionally presented in rectangular servings.  to get the rectangles you lose a bit of cake, but throw some ganache on the funny shapes and i assure you, nothing will go to waste.
i consider those little scraps…abstract petit fours”.

as shown in the photo above you can see 
i have not conquered the perfect Japanese cheesecake.
i followed the instructions and tips from Little Teochew’s fabulous blog post, but as she mentions over and over again in the comments…it’s all in the egg whites.  i DO know how to whip a good egg white, but i think it takes practice to get it just right for this cake…AND PRACTICE I WILL.  i love this cake… light texture, slightly moist, holds up very well, cuts crisp and clean and works as a great blank canvas for ganache and other flavorful toppings.
photo on the left shows the shrinkage that i encountered.  this is something one tries to avoid, again, by following the tips from Little Teochew…and the photo on the right is a different kind of bain marie method.  instead of putting your cheesecake in the bath and risking leakage into the cake you set small dishes of water in the corners of the oven.
   
Japanese Cheesecake Recipe please go to Little Teochew’s blog.  read all the comments and follow her instructions to the “T”.  you might not have the perfect cake, but i guarantee you will have a delicious cake.
GINGER WHITE CHOCOLATE GANACHE

6 oz. good white chocolate, chopped.  i used Guitard white chocolate.
1/2 cup heavy cream (plus 1-2 Tbsp extra that gets lost to the pan and strainer)
1 heaping Tbsp. minced fresh ginger.
(you might need to make more (like 1/2 again) if you are doing total coverage of the cake)

put chocolate in heat resistant bowl.  set aside.
slowly heat your cream and ginger in a small sauce pan…stirring to almost boil.
pour hot cream/ginger through a strainer over chocolate in bowl.
let sit for a moment then begin to stir until all the chunks have melted.  i needed to set this over a double boiler i had ready just to melt the last chunks.  i found that i needed to stir vigorously towards the end because white chocolate acts different than regular chocolate.  it wanted to look separated.  if this happens just whisk until it comes together.
let it cool slightly so its not piping hot.  the hotter it is, the thinner your coating will be.  i like to have my cake slightly chilled when going for the “drip down the sides look”.
if you want total coverage i suggest you put the cake over a cooling rack.  try to pour over the cake in one fell swoop…with ganache it needs to be one big pour for a smooth finish…no going back for a re-touch…that’s why i like the drip method.  there is a little more leeway.

let sit to set…or chill in fridge for a more firm set.
i prefer the cake with ganache after it has set in the fridge.  it will have a slight dull finish, but after you bring it out and by the time you serve it should retain a slight beautiful sheen.
photos are after it set in the fridge, so you can see the sheen came back.

PS…if you have ganache left over…rewarm over double boiler.  you will need to whisk vigorously because of the separating i mentioned above.  i thought the left-overs were a gonner, but after whisking it came together and worked well for my “Abstract Petit Fours”.

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