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Making Artisan Cheesecake


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About the Author

Chef Melanie Underwood developed her enthusiasm for fresh and organic food as a child on her family's farm in Virginia, where she began cooking at age four. She apprenticed with noted pastry chef Jill Light at a hotel in Washington, D.C., before moving to New York, where she demonstrated her talent for baking and desserts at the Four Seasons Hotel, the Plaza Hotel, Torre di Pisa, and other celebrated New York City restaurants. Since 1996 Underwood has been sharing her expertise as a cooking and baking instructor for professional and recreational programs at the Institute for Culinary Education (, has taught private cooking classes at Home Cooking New York in Manhattan's SoHo neighborhood (, and is frequently invited to teach throughout the country. Underwood also tests and develops recipes for many corporate clients, including Dairy Management, Diageo, Folgers Coffee, Kraft Foods, Sara Lee, Splenda, Ziploc, and other high-profile brands. She has demonstrated her skills on several TV networks, including NBC (The Today Show), ABC (Live with Regis and Kelly), CNN, Food Network, and Oxygen, and has been featured in the New York Times, the New York Daily News, New York magazine, Fine Cooking magazine, and other publications. Underwood is also a co-author of the self-published book Art and Cook, a unique blend of recipes, art, and politics.


"Chef Melanie's passion for baking shines through in her teaching style. She isn't afraid to push her students to be the best they can be, and this is what sets her apart. She continues to inspire me to practice and perfect my craft. When I'm baking at home I always think, "What would Chef Melanie do?" And she makes a really mean cheesecake!" - Marci Greenfield, Director of Content Marketing at Martha Stewart Living"Melanie Underwood masterfully bridges the gap between professional expertise and beloved home-baked collections, resulting in recipes that will endure long after the last bite of her tantalizing cheesecake has disappeared from the plate." - Jody Eddy, award-winning chef and author of North: The New Nordic Cuisine of IcelandWith Making Artisan Cheesecake, author and chef instructor Melanie Underwood presents 80 enticing recipes for everyone's favorite dessert. In this wide-ranging yet clearly presented collection, Underwood shows us just how creative cheesecakes can be, with everything from a flan-inspired Brazilian cheesecake to a creme brulee cheesecake to gluten-free and vegan cheesecakes. This cookbook's inspiring flavors and accessible techniques blow the cheesecake category wide open! - Cheryl Sternman Rule, author, Yogurt Culture

"Melanie Underwood's Making Artisan Cheesecake presents eighty unique and delicious ways to enjoy a timeless classic, along with the essential techniques for reinventing it." - Nathalie Dupree, author of the James Beard Award-winning Mastering the Art of Southern Cooking and television chef

"Chef Melanie Underwood is a culinary expert on both the sweet and savory sides of cooking. As a teacher, no matter what the class or cuisine--the breadth and depth of the topics she is able to teach is very broad--Melanie is focused on having her students enhance flavor, improve their technical understanding of the cooking process, and expand their love of food. Her book Making Artisan Cheesecake delivers on all three, offering an inspiring array of recipes and an in-depth overview of the techniques involved in making many different types of cheesecake, so readers can envision, create, and enjoy their own." - Rick Smilow, President and CEO, Institute of Culinary Education

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