Eats, Shoots & Reads

Eats #35: Not So Easy Cheesecake…

Ingredients: [Cheesecake] 150g unsalted butter, 250g digestive biscuits, 115g caster sugar, 3 tablespoons cornflour, 900g full fat cream cheese, 2 large free range eggs, 115ml double cream, 1 vanilla pod, zest lemon, zest zest orange. [Cherry Sauce] 400g stoned cherries, 3 tablespoons sugar, icing sugar.

Difficulty: 2/5
Rating: 4/5

Crush the digestive biscuits until they resemble breadcrumbs and mix with melted butter. Place the biscuit into a greased and lined cake tin and press down firmly to form the base. Cook in the oven for 10 minutes and then put to one side to cool.

Mix the cornflour and sugar together in a large bowl and then add the cream cheese. Using an electric whisk mix the cream cheese with the other ingredients until silky and smooth. Whisk in the eggs and then slowly add the double cream. Finally add the zest of an orange, lemon and the seeds of 1 vanilla pod.

Spoon the cream cheese mix into the cake tin making sure the mixture is evenly spread. Cook for 40-45 minutes until golden brown and set and leave to cool for 2-3 hours.

While cooling make a cherry compote by mixing the cherries with sugar and water. Reduce until soft and sticky and leave to cool until you’re ready to serve.

Once the cheesecake has cooled sprinkle with icing sugar and serve with cherry compote!

Review

It turns out that “Bloomin Easy Cheesecake” isn’t so easy after all. Don’t get me wrong this is’t a complicated recipe but compared to a standard cheesecake the process and time scales make this dish more complex than the title implies.

I was really intrigued to give this recipe a try as I’ve never made, or eaten, a baked cheesecake and I really wasn’t sure what to expect.

For the most part this is a standard cheesecake recipe with the added element of eggs and cooking – it was the cooking part I was most nervous of. I was never 100% sure how long it needed in the oven, what level of golden is sufficient and what level of cooked.

Fortunately the recipe was pretty much spot on and after 45 minutes the cheesecake came out of the oven set and golden. The cream cheese filling had a lovely light, soft texture, more like a mousse than a cheesecake and the vanilla, orange and lemon zest work well.

My only criticism has to be the baked sides and top – I’m not a fan of egg custard or anything resembling that taste/texture and the top/sides of the cheesecake weren’t to my tastes.

As my challenge progresses I find myself always looking for improvements to recipes and whilst not a criticism of the recipe there’s a couple things I would tweak.

I personally felt the biscuit base was too thick and although tasty sometimes overpowered the cheesecake filling. I’d also like more orange/lemon zest and would consider mixing in some orange juice to give it a stronger citrus flavour.

The cheesecake could of also done with an overnight chill in the fridge as the taste and texture was improved once it had chance to properly set.

Overall a lovely, light, creamy and rich cheesecake that improves with time in the fridge. A recipe worth a go and one that can be easily adapted!

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