Cotton soft cheesecakes (or soufflé cheesecakes as they are known in Japan) are light, soft and fluffy, with a citrusy tang from lemon juice and yuzu jam.






Skill level

Average: 3.4 (16 votes)

This cheesecake is achievable as long as you pay close attention to timing – otherwise the cake will crack! While it might be tempting to eat it right away, it is best chilled overnight, as the fresh cake will be too crumbly.


  • 70 g (2½ oz) caster (superfine) sugar, plus extra for dusting
  • 200 g (7 oz) milk
  • 200 g (7 oz) cream cheese
  • 120 g (4¼ oz) egg whites (from approximately 3 eggs)
  • 80 g (2¾ oz) egg yolks (from approximately 5 eggs)
  • 10 g (¼ oz) cornflour (cornstarch)
  • 40 g (1½ oz) plain (all-purpose) flour
  • 20 g (¾ oz) lemon juice (from approximately ½ lemon)
  • yuzu jam (see Note) or orange marmalade, to glaze

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Begin this recipe the day before you wish to serve the cheesecake.

  1. Preheat the oven to 165°C (330°F) and line a greased 16-cm (6¼ in) round cake tin with baking paper. Grease the inside of the paper and dust the walls with sugar. Put the kettle or a large saucepan of water on to boil.
  2. Heat the milk and cream cheese in a small saucepan over low heat and whisk until homogenous. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool to room temperature.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat the egg whites until soft peaks form, then slowly add 50 g (1¾ oz) sugar, whisking continuously until the sugar dissolves and stiff peaks form.
  4. Transfer the cooled cream cheese mixture to a large mixing bowl and add the egg yolks, whisking to combine. Repeat the process with the remaining 20 g (¾ oz) sugar, followed by the cornflour, the flour and finally the lemon juice, in that order, whisking to combine after each addition. Gently fold the mixture into the egg whites, then pour into the lined cake tin.
  5. Place the cake tin into a deep baking tray and transfer to the oven. Very carefully pour boiling water into the baking tray until it reaches halfway up the sides of the cake tin. Bake the cake in the water bath for 35 minutes, then reduce the temperature to 155°C (310°F) and bake for a further 10 minutes.
  6. Switch off the heat and leave the cake in the oven for 10–20 mins to set fully. Remove the cake from the water bath and leave to cool to room temperature before turning out and placing on a cake rack.
  7. In a small saucepan, heat the yuzu jam over low heat until it thins. Brush the cake with the yuzu jam to glaze. Once the glaze has set, cover the cake and refrigerate overnight.



Yuzu jam is available from Japanese supermarkets.


Recipe from Tokyo Local by Caryn Liew and Brendan Liew, Smith Street Books, RRP $39.99