Preheat your oven to 325F.
Set 3 cups of water to boil in a medium saucepan.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, with the paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese until slightly fluffy. It should still look creamy.
Next, on medium-low speed, add the sugar, vanilla extract, and salt. Beat to combine.
On low speed, add each egg individually, and beat until incorporated. Next, add the tahini paste. Mix until combined.
NOTE: It is VERY important to note that you do not over-mix the filling. Over-mixing incorporates too much air, and the trapped air will cause your cheesecake to rise and bow upwards during cooking, but when cooling, the air will escape and the cake will have a pronounced dip in the center, and be more prone to cracking. It will still taste good, though!
Before pouring your batter into the crust, prepare the springform pan and baking vessel.
- Taking four large sheets of foil, you must construct a protective liner for your cheesecake as it bakes in it's water bath. Using two sheets of the foil, and fold the horizontal edges together to make one large sheet. Crunch the seam to make it 'seal'. Do the same with the next two sheets.- Now that your four sheets of foil have been made into two larger sheets, place them on top of each other, with one seam should horizontal and one vertical. We are trying to prevent any of the water from leaking into the cake!- Place your springform pan into the middle of the foil and scrunch & fold around the pan. Keep the top of the foil from touching the top lip of the pan.- Next, place the pan into your larger baking vessel and 'nest' the pan in. Make sure there is room around the pan for the water bath.
Now, pour your cheesecake filling into the prepared crust, and lightly smooth the top out with a rubber spatula or small offset palette knife.
Next, we will create the water bath for baking. Very very carefully, using a ladle or pouring directly if you are brave, pour the boiling water into the *larger cooking vessel*, surrounding the springform pan. Pour until halfway up the side of the springform pan. Don't spill any water into the cheesecake itself.
After creating the water bath, carefully transfer the whole vessel to the oven and bake on the middle rack for 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until set, turning the cheesecake around midway through baking. The center should be just set when done.
Set two wire racks on your counter, one of them with a dish towel underneath.
Retrieve your baked cheesecake and carefully place on the rack without the dish towel. Using oven gloves, very gently lift the foil wrapped springform pan and place on the other rack. Still wearing the gloves, carefully peel the foil away.
Move the larger vessel to the side, and place the now unfolded cheesecake on the rack to cool to room temperature. Let the cheesecake sit in the fridge for last least 6 hours (or even better, overnight) before serving. Just cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate.
To un-mold, gently run a sharp knife around the edge of the cheesecake, and then unsnap the springform. The parchment paper we placed at the bottom of the cake will let you transfer to a cake plate easily.