Yesterday I wrote about the Japanese YouTube host Ochikeron and her very popular video for three-ingredient soufflé cheesecake. In that article, I talked about a few ways that you can make this recipe even more foolproof. (Hot tip from that piece: Use a microwave!)
You'd think that was all I had to say on the matter. But no. This three-ingredient cake is phenomenally simple and straightforward, but one aspect of the recipe bothered me: What, I wondered, is the point of making a very simple cake if you have to bake it in three stages, each stage at a different temperature? To do that means hanging around the oven for 45 minutes-and that seems antithetical to a cake that's supposed to be easy and quick.
Luckily, my coworkers and I spend our days watching YouTube videos and cooking alongside them in our test kitchen. Which is exactly what our Assistant Food Editor, Katherine Sacks, did yesterday with Ochikeron's recipe. And while she played around with the cheesecake, she had a breakthrough: She found that, in fact, you can bake this cake at only one temperature: 350 degrees fahrenheit.
By baking her cake in three stages, Katherine told me, "Ochikeron was attempting to get the cake evenly cooked, without browning the edges. I felt we could get the cake there easier by baking it at 350 degrees for 30 minutes."
After 30 minutes, Katherine turned the oven off but kept the cake in the oven for 15 more minutes, just to let it dry out a little. (Ochikeron does this, too.) When she finally brought the cake out, it was just as Ochikeron wants it to be: Uniformly cakey and tender (but not custardy), and without a single browned crumb.
Not bad for a mere three ingredients.