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Jennifer Segal’s ‘creamy, crack-free’ baked cheesecake takes Facebook by storm

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jennifer segals creamy crack free baked cheesecake takes facebook by storm

Amateur cooks are following an easy recipe for ‘creamy, crack-free’ baked cheesecake, which includes many of the professional tips found in Australian chef Stephanie Alexander’s ‘best-ever’ recipe that went viral this month.

A woman shared photos of a New York-style cheesecake topped with raspberry coulis in a cookery group on Facebook, telling members how she used a ‘super simple’ recipe from American chef Jennifer Segal which takes just 30 minutes to prepare.

While baked cheesecake is notorious for splitting and cooking unevenly, Ms Segal promises her recipe is ‘totally doable, even for beginners’ and creates a flawless filling without a single crack, irrespective of the maker’s skill.

The secret to her silky smooth cake is beating cornflour into the sugar and cream cheese mixture and pre-baking the biscuit crust on its own for 10 minutes before covering it with filling.

Although flour is not typically used in cheesecakes, the starchy texture stops the filling from cracking as it cools and makes it easier to cut the cake into clean slices.

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A New York-style baked cheesecake made from American chef Jennifer Segal's 'super simple' recipe that takes just 30 minutes to prepare

A New York-style baked cheesecake made from American chef Jennifer Segal's 'super simple' recipe that takes just 30 minutes to prepare

A New York-style baked cheesecake made from American chef Jennifer Segal’s ‘super simple’ recipe that takes just 30 minutes to prepare

The 'crack-free' filling topped with raspberry coulis, which is achieved by beating flour into the sugar, cream cheese and sugar to stop the mixture from splitting as it cools

The 'crack-free' filling topped with raspberry coulis, which is achieved by beating flour into the sugar, cream cheese and sugar to stop the mixture from splitting as it cools

The ‘crack-free’ filling topped with raspberry coulis, which is achieved by beating flour into the sugar, cream cheese and sugar to stop the mixture from splitting as it cools

It’s not necessary to pre-bake cheesecake crust, but doing so strengthens the base which keeps it intact when heavy filling is loaded on top. 

Pre-baking also crisps the biscuit which provides contrast against the smooth creaminess of the cheese.

Ms Segal is a graduate of Maryland’s prestigious but now defunct L’Academie de Cuisine and author of cookbook Once Upon A Chef, with years of experience in upscale restaurant kitchens across the US.

Some of her tips are included in Melbourne chef Stephanie Alexander’s ‘best-ever’ cheesecake recipe which circulated widely on social media last Tuesday. 

Both chefs advise bringing ingredients to room temperature before mixing them and baking the cheesecake in a tray of water, known as a ‘bain marie‘ in culinary terms.

The added moisture from the water bath prevents the surface of the cake from cracking, in much the same way as moisturisers hydrate and strengthen skin.

Leaving ingredients out of the fridge for 10 to 20 minutes before using them reduces the risk of lumpy texture, one of the major hurdles chefs encounter in baked cheesecakes.

Fats and dairy mix faster and smoother at room temperature.

A baked cheesecake made from Melbourne chef Stephanie Alexander's 'best-ever' recipe

A baked cheesecake made from Melbourne chef Stephanie Alexander's 'best-ever' recipe

A baked cheesecake made from Melbourne chef Stephanie Alexander’s ‘best-ever’ recipe

The secret to an 'exceptionally creamy' cake with a smooth top is to bring ingredients to room temperature before mixing and baking the cheesecake in a tray of water, as shown here

The secret to an 'exceptionally creamy' cake with a smooth top is to bring ingredients to room temperature before mixing and baking the cheesecake in a tray of water, as shown here

The secret to an ‘exceptionally creamy’ cake with a smooth top is to bring ingredients to room temperature before mixing and baking the cheesecake in a tray of water, as shown here

Unlike cracks, which don’t affect flavour, lumps are a sign of poor or incomplete mixing which taints the taste, meaning it’s important to bring ingredients to between 19 and 22 degrees Celsius when making any kind of baked dessert.

Ms Segal and Ms Alexander also warn against mixing the batter too vigorously.

Over-beating the sugar, cream cheese and butter can cause cakes to sink in the oven when the heat deflates the extra air whisked into the cheese.

The recipe for Jennifer Segal’s baked cheesecake can be found here.

How to make salted caramel baked cheesecake

The recipe for the cheesecake (pictured) is surprisingly simple, despite having several steps

The recipe for the cheesecake (pictured) is surprisingly simple, despite having several steps

The recipe for the cheesecake (pictured) is surprisingly simple, despite having several steps

INGREDIENTS

For the salted caramel

270g soft caramels, shop bought (Werther’s Originals work well)

1/4 cup cream

1 teaspoon sea salt flakes

For the cheesecake

250g crushed sweet biscuits 

100g unsalted butter, melted

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

500g cream cheese, room temperature

2 tablespoons brown sugar 

2 teaspoons teaspoon vanilla extract

3 large eggs, room temperature

200ml sour cream

METHOD

For the salted caramel

1. Save 1/4 cup caramel for drizzling

2. In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the caramels, cream and salt. Begin pushing them around the pan and as soon as they move freely, turn the heat down to low and continue to stir until the mixture is smooth. 

3. Allow to cool to room temperature before proceeding.

4. You can make the base of the cheesecake while you wait.

For the cheesecake

1. Preheat the oven to 160C/320F/140C fan forced.

2. Grease and line the base and sides of an 8 inch round spring form tin. Use a food processor or blender to process the biscuits to fine crumbs. Add the cinnamon and ginger and process to combine. Add the melted butter and blitz one more time to combine completely. Tip the mixture into your prepared tin and press down all over the base and up the sides about 2 inches.

3. Set aside 1/4 cup of caramel for drizzling later.

4. Using a stand mixer with the paddle attachment or handheld beater, beat the cream cheese, the remaining caramel and sugar until smooth and creamy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as required.

5. Add the eggs one at a time, then the vanilla beating until each is well incorporated. Beat for a further 2 minutes on a low to medium setting. Add the sour cream and beat until just combined.

6. Pour the filling into the biscuit base and smooth over the top as much as possible.

7. Place the tin onto the middle shelf of the oven. Bake for around 55-65 minutes or until the centre is almost set. There should be a very slight wobble in the centre. Leave it to cool in the oven with the oven off and the door ajar for 1/2 an hour then take it out and let cool at room temperature for at least 45 minutes. Finally, transfer to the fridge to cool completely.

To serve

1. Mix a little water into the leftover caramel and heat for 15 seconds in the microwave. Drizzle over the top of the cake and the slices once served.

The clip shows the various stages of making the cheesecake, including blending Werther's Originals with cream to make the salted caramel glaze (pictured)

The clip shows the various stages of making the cheesecake, including blending Werther's Originals with cream to make the salted caramel glaze (pictured)

The clip shows the various stages of making the cheesecake, including blending Werther's Originals with cream to make the salted caramel glaze (pictured)

The clip shows the various stages of making the cheesecake, including blending Werther's Originals with cream to make the salted caramel glaze (pictured)

The clip shows the various stages of making the cheesecake, including blending Werther’s Originals with cream to make the salted caramel glaze (pictured)

Source: Sugar Salt Magic 

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Holidays in South Australia are ON as New South Wales confirms just six new coronavirus infections

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holidays in south australia are on as new south wales confirms just six new coronavirus infections

New South Wales residents will be able to holiday in South Australia after the state recorded just six new cases of COVID-19 in hotel quarantine. 

None of the new coronavirus cases reported on Wednesday were acquired within the community, giving the green light for South Australia to open its borders.   

South Australia Premier Steven Marshall on Tuesday said the border reopening with NSW would go head if no new cases of community transmission were recorded. 

SA will lift its COVID-19 border restrictions with NSW from midnight on Wednesday and drop the two-week quarantine requirement. 

South Australia Premier Steven Marshall (pictured) said the state would open its borders to NSW on Wednesday at midnight if no new cases of community transmission were recorded

South Australia Premier Steven Marshall (pictured) said the state would open its borders to NSW on Wednesday at midnight if no new cases of community transmission were recorded

South Australia Premier Steven Marshall (pictured) said the state would open its borders to NSW on Wednesday at midnight if no new cases of community transmission were recorded

NSW recorded just six new cases of COVID-19 on Wednesday from travellers in hotel quarantine. SA will lift its COVID-19 border restrictions with NSW and drop the two-week quarantine requirement (Police check at the NSW-Victoria border pictured)

NSW recorded just six new cases of COVID-19 on Wednesday from travellers in hotel quarantine. SA will lift its COVID-19 border restrictions with NSW and drop the two-week quarantine requirement (Police check at the NSW-Victoria border pictured)

NSW recorded just six new cases of COVID-19 on Wednesday from travellers in hotel quarantine. SA will lift its COVID-19 border restrictions with NSW and drop the two-week quarantine requirement (Police check at the NSW-Victoria border pictured) 

‘I got an update towards the middle of last night and there hadn’t been anything reported so we’re pretty confident it is going to happen,’ he told Nine Network on Wednesday. 

‘We still want to check out any new infections in NSW through to midnight last night,’ Mr Marshall said.

‘But NSW has been doing extraordinarily well. We can’t wait to welcome people from NSW with open arms.’

This marks the second day in a row with no community transmission of COVID-19 in NSW.     

‘The last time NSW had consecutive days without community transmission was July 3, 4, and 5,’ a statement from NSW Health said.

The new cases brought the total number of infections recorded in NSW to 4,023. 

There were also 16,759 tests recorded in the 24-hour reporting period. 

‘While there were no locally acquired cases recorded in the past 48 hours, the virus is likely still circulating and it is imperative anyone displaying mild symptoms get tested immediately and not delay their test.

‘If people don’t come forward and get tested, we can’t keep the pandemic at bay,’ NSW Health said.

NSW Health are currently treating 74 people for coronavirus, including three cases in intensive care, one of whom is being ventilated. 

The prospect of the border relaxations has already boosted the domestic aviation industry with more flights to resume in coming weeks.

Qantas is also expected to add flights from Sydney to Adelaide this week along with budget airline Jetstar

Qantas is also expected to add flights from Sydney to Adelaide this week along with budget airline Jetstar

Qantas is also expected to add flights from Sydney to Adelaide this week along with budget airline Jetstar

Last week SA lifted the quarantine requirements for people coming from the ACT and now looks likely to do the same for travellers from NSW on Thursday.

Virgin Australia plans to resume daily flights between Sydney and Adelaide – from three a week now – from October 2, and will offer three flights a week between Canberra and Adelaide from October 12.

The airline has flagged adding even more flights from November.

Qantas and its budget airline Jetstar are also expected to add flights between Sydney and Adelaide this week.

The long-awaited decision on SA’s border with NSW was made at Tuesday’s meeting of the state’s transition committee and came after initial plans to lift the isolation measures were stalled for weeks because of a cluster of coronavirus cases in Sydney.

‘This is going to be a relief that will be felt across our state, from an economic perspective and from a family perspective,’ Mr Marshall said on Tuesday.

Virgin Australia plans to resume daily flights between Sydney and Adelaide - from three a week now - from October 2, and will offer three flights a week between Canberra and Adelaide from October 12

Virgin Australia plans to resume daily flights between Sydney and Adelaide - from three a week now - from October 2, and will offer three flights a week between Canberra and Adelaide from October 12

Virgin Australia plans to resume daily flights between Sydney and Adelaide – from three a week now – from October 2, and will offer three flights a week between Canberra and Adelaide from October 12

‘We know that this has been a massive burden on the business community and also on families and individuals.’

SA health officials had examined the case of an infected Sydney taxi driver but were satisfied it was a risk that NSW could be manage.

Chief Public Health Officer Nicola Spurrier said the decision to ease the border measures came after 14 days of no community transmission in NSW involving cases with an unknown origin.

‘I know people will be concerned about the taxi driver. But I’m very confident that person is not representative of community transmission,’ she said.

Professor Spurrier has urged anyone travelling between SA and NSW to keep a close eye on the latest information in relation to coronavirus cases in Sydney and called for all travellers on planes to wear masks.

SA reported no new cases on Tuesday and has no active infections.

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Victoria’s emergency response boss wanted a navy blockade to stop cruise ships

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victorias emergency response boss wanted a navy blockade to stop cruise ships

Victoria’s emergency response boss wanted the Australian Defence Force to intervene to stop cruise ships from docking in Melbourne

Emergency Management Commissioner Andrew Crisp pushed to get a navy blockade to ensure cruise ships would not enter Port Phillip Bay.

The exchange was revealed during the state’s inquiry into the botched hotel quarantine on Tuesday, where audio recordings of State Control Centre meetings were shown from March 27 and 28.

Emergency Management Commissioner Andrew Crisp pushed to get a navy blockade to ensure cruise ships would not enter Port Phillip Bay

Emergency Management Commissioner Andrew Crisp pushed to get a navy blockade to ensure cruise ships would not enter Port Phillip Bay

Emergency Management Commissioner Andrew Crisp pushed to get a navy blockade to ensure cruise ships would not enter Port Phillip Bay

The exchange was revealed during the state's inquiry into the botched hotel quarantine on Tuesday, where audio recordings of State Control Centre meetings were shown from March 27 and 28

The exchange was revealed during the state's inquiry into the botched hotel quarantine on Tuesday, where audio recordings of State Control Centre meetings were shown from March 27 and 28

The exchange was revealed during the state’s inquiry into the botched hotel quarantine on Tuesday, where audio recordings of State Control Centre meetings were shown from March 27 and 28

On March 27 Mr Crisp was told that two cruise ships were preparing to dock in Melbourne and reacted strongly, the Herald Sun reported.

‘It’s where we night need a bit more help from the ADF, we need a navy blockade so the ships can’t get close to Victoria,’ he said. 

An unnamed person said the ships were going to arrive at Station Pier in the coming days to resupply before then heading to the United States.

Mr Crisp dropped the issue after saying it was ‘very useful’ and the meetings continued to set up the mandatory 14-day quarantine period with less than 36 hours notice.

There was confusion in the State Control Meetings about whether state or commonwealth laws were going to be used to enforce the quarantine.

In a recording from March 28, Mr Crisp said: ‘The control agency is the Department of Health and Human Services for this operation’.

However on Tuesday DHHS secretary Kym Peake claimed her department did not hold full responsibility.

Ms Peake also told the inquiry she did not know who decided to hire private security for the hotel quarantine. 

DISCUSSION ABOUT NAVY SHIPS DURING THE STATE CONTROL MEETING ON MARCH 27 

Andrew Crisp: Are we expecting cruise ships? I didn’t think we were.

Claire Febey: While we have been on the call, I’m getting advice from team members who are looking into this (who) tell me that there are two cruise ships that want to refuel, restock and change crew … I need to get some more detail but I just think that’s something we need to consider and plan for.

Mr Crisp: No, no, definitely, if that’s possibly going to happen. It’s where we might need a bit more help from the ADF, we need a Navy blockade so the ships can’t get close to Victoria.

Unnamed: So there’s two ships coming into Melbourne to Station Pier, one tomorrow morning and one Sunday morning. They’re coming in purely to resupply with fuel, water and food. One of the ships is taking two US passengers on and they’re heading out again. There is no change of crew, no one is getting off, it’s simply just to refuel and go. And these are two of the ships that were off the coast of Western Australia. They have got American tourists on board, they can’t fly and they have to travel by sea to get home to North America.

Mr Crisp: That’s very useful. 

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Premier Daniel Andrews has been slammed for his handling of the coronavirus crisis

Premier Daniel Andrews has been slammed for his handling of the coronavirus crisis

Premier Daniel Andrews has been slammed for his handling of the coronavirus crisis

Government officials were hesitant about hiring private security personnel to man the hotels because they thought it was an industry run by ‘cowboys’.

They were also concerned about ‘rogue’ guards potentially ‘prowling the corridors’ of hotels, WhatsApp messages shown at the inquiry reveal.  

In spite of their concerns, private security firms did land the contracts, and up to 99 per cent of coronavirus cases in Victoria’s second wave can now be traced back to returned travellers.

The virus escaped several hotels after security guards unknowingly contracted the virus and spread it throughout their communities. 

On Tuesday, the inquiry was shown several text messages between Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions staff on the evening of March 27.

‘Gotta be careful with a lot of security companies. Heaps of cash work,’ one bureaucrat warned.

‘Cowboy industry,’ another said.

‘Needs to be reputable. Don’t want (redacted) rogue (redacted) prowling the corridors,’ another replied.

Victorian government officials were hesitant about hiring private security personnel to man the hotel quarantine program because they thought it was an industry run by 'cowboys'

Victorian government officials were hesitant about hiring private security personnel to man the hotel quarantine program because they thought it was an industry run by 'cowboys'

They were also concerned about 'rogue' guards potentially 'prowling the corridors' of hotels, WhatsApp messages shown at an inquiry into the bungled program reveal

They were also concerned about 'rogue' guards potentially 'prowling the corridors' of hotels, WhatsApp messages shown at an inquiry into the bungled program reveal

Victorian government officials were hesitant about hiring private security personnel to man the hotel quarantine program because they thought it was an industry run by ‘cowboys’

The inquiry is partially trying to decipher who made the final decision to hire private firms instead of utilising the services of the Australian Defence Force.

The inquiry is working through evidence to establish if and how the quarantine program failed Victorians.

Jobs department secretary Simon Phemister told the inquiry his department was tasked with hiring security companies following a meeting at the state control centre on March 27.

Mr Phemister wasn’t present at the meeting but knew it was attended by high-ranking Victoria Police officers and Mr Crisp.

‘I don’t know who made the decision,’ Mr Phemister told the inquiry on Tuesday.

‘All I know is that we were commissioned to procure private security in that 4.30pm meeting.’

According to recordings of the meeting, Victoria Police Assistant Commissioner Mick Grainger told Mr Crisp it was the force’s preference that private security be the ‘first line of security’.

Victoria Police have since argued they were expressing a preference, not a direction.

Mr Phemister said his department was looking for companies with a track record of working with the government plus the ability to ‘scale up’ as more travellers returned home.

The inquiry is working through evidence to establish if and how the quarantine program failed Victorians

The inquiry is working through evidence to establish if and how the quarantine program failed Victorians

The inquiry is working through evidence to establish if and how the quarantine program failed Victorians

The virus escaped several hotels after security guards unknowingly contracted the virus and spread it throughout their communities

The virus escaped several hotels after security guards unknowingly contracted the virus and spread it throughout their communities

The virus escaped several hotels after security guards unknowingly contracted the virus and spread it throughout their communities

It was also considered ‘valuable’ if a security company had its own personal protective equipment supplies due to a shortage in Victoria at the time.

‘The final point… we needed them to be good, model employers,’ he said.

‘Now more than ever, given the economic climate, we needed people who had a track record of being good to their teams and employing people on a correct and fair basis.’

There are several more officials required to give evidence to the inquiry, which is now in its final week of public hearings.

Department of Health and Human Services secretary Kym Peake sppeared on Tuesday, while Jobs Minister Martin Pakula and Emergency Services Minister Lisa Neville are both due to give evidence on Wednesday.

Health Minister Jenny Mikakos and Premier Daniel Andrews have been pushed back to Thursday and Friday respectively due to scheduling issues.

‘When I’ll appear before the inquiry I’ll answer the questions as honestly, frankly, clearly, directly as possible,’ the premier told reporters at his daily news conference on Tuesday.

The inquiry continues.  

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Qantas ends its 30-year partnership with Rugby Australia due to the coronavirus pandemic

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qantas ends its 30 year partnership with rugby australia due to the coronavirus pandemic

National carrier Qantas has ended its 30-year sponsorship of the Wallabies, saying ‘this pandemic has been the undoing’. 

Qantas chief customer officer Stephanie Tully announced on Wednesday that the long-running partnership with the national rugby union team was over. 

‘In an environment where thousands of our people have lost jobs and thousands more are stood down while they wait for flying to restart, we can’t maintain these sponsorships in the way we have in the past,’ Ms Tully said in a statement. 

‘While we’re dealing with this crisis and its aftermath, the cash cost of our sponsorships has to be zero.

‘Qantas has had a very long association with Rugby Australia and the Wallabies, and we’ve stuck with each other during difficult times. Unfortunately, this pandemic has been the undoing.’ 

The cash-strapped airline will also not be paying any sponsorship fees to Cricket Australia and the Football Federation Australia for the next 12 months.   

Qantas will still provide ‘in-kind support’ such as free flights and marketing. 

The airline will continue to support the Australian Olympic Committee and Paralympics Australia and fly both teams to the rescheduled Tokyo Olympics in 2021.

Qantas has grounded most of its fleet due to travel restrictions and recently recorded a $1.9 billion annual loss for the 2019/2020 financial year. 

Meanwhile, 20,000 Qantas staff have been stood down while 8,000 have been made redundant. 

The airline stressed the decision was purely financial and was completely unrelated to the Wallabies Irael Folau controversy last year. 

Folau’s contract was terminated after his homophobic social media posts were ruled a serious breach of Rugby Australia’s standards.   

CEO Alan Joyce said Qantas did not sponsor teams to be embroiled in controversy.  

‘Sponsorship is supposed to be a positive for us,’ Mr Joyce said at the time. 

More to come. 

Qantas planes grounded at Sydney Airport. The airline has suddenly ended its 30-year sponsorship of the Wallabies, saying 'this pandemic has been the undoing'

Qantas planes grounded at Sydney Airport. The airline has suddenly ended its 30-year sponsorship of the Wallabies, saying 'this pandemic has been the undoing'

Qantas planes grounded at Sydney Airport. The airline has suddenly ended its 30-year sponsorship of the Wallabies, saying ‘this pandemic has been the undoing’

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