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I tried this recipe (more or less). It's quite delicious and all, but why did my cheesecake fall?

I didn't open the oven early, it stayed in the oven long enough

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    what does "more or less" mean? any deviation from the recipe could be the reason it fell
    – Esther
    Jul 26 at 13:56

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What I see here is the typical cross-section of e.g. a German cheesecake (which would use quark) or similar. Not bad per se, but probably not what you expected. Your cake has risen and fallen again as evidenced by the thicker “outer ring” and the cracks whose shape indicates expansion. That kind of “movement” is quite normal for the aforementioned kind of cheesecake, and there are methods to deal with that, e.g. running a knife along the edge at some point during baking.

For the cream cheese based American / NY-style cheesecakes, however, they don’t “fall” (much), because they are not supposed to rise (much) in the first place, so you will want to minimize the expansion and ensuing shrinkage, and the typical measures are:

  • Avoid incorporating air into the filing. So instead of whipping your eggs and cream cheese (or even worse, beating the egg whites separately), you want to stir gently and only as little as possible, until the ingredients are combined properly.
  • Lower your oven temperature to ensure an even bake and to avoid or at least delay the formation of the top crust. That’s also what the water bath is used for. Your cake seems quite brown at the top, which can indicate a too-high oven temperature or too much top heat. (Shielding the top with aluminum foil can also help.)
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