One of the most requested desserts I make is my baked vanilla Cheesecake . If I am off to a dinner party I’m often asked to make one and take it along with me, mainly due to the fact no one wants to make desserts for a pastry chef: wish they would but to keep the peace I make one anyway ;).
This recipe doesn’t have the usual crumb base, I like to part- bake a shortbread base and then place the filling on top and continue baking. It gives a bit more of a” fudgy” base I feel but I will give an alternative crumb base at the end if you prefer the traditional base.
YOU WILL NEED :
A round 9-10 inch spring form tin lined with baking parchment
A decent mixing machine or large bowl if you are doing it by hand with a strong beater or wooden spoon.
Some soft focus fairy lights over your cooker hood, and light jazz playing in the background for the Nigella effect.
The urge not to shove your face in the bowl and eat the batter like a kitchen whore.
INGREDIENTS & METHOD FOR THE BASE:
250g unsalted butter
60g caster sugar
pinch of salt
320g plain flour
Pre-heat oven to 160c
Beat butter and sugar together until soft.
Sift flour and salt together and add semolina.
Mix into butter to form a soft dough.
Press dough into your lined cake tin, prick all over with a fork.
Bake for approximately 20-25 minutes until a light golden colour is reached.
Place to one side and cool.
Part Two – The all important creamy filling ( I know I know)
INGREDIENTS & METHOD FOR FILLING :
800g full fat cream cheese (push the boat out and use Philadelphia..its worth it)
2oog caster sugar
The seeds scraped from 1 Vanilla pod or 1 tablespoon of quality vanilla essence.
4 large eggs + the yolk of one other
150g full fat creme fraiche
Pre-heat oven to 160c
Beat the cream cheese and sugar together, add the vanilla and beat again.
Add the cornflour and beat in until mxed.
Add your eggs one at a time, beating inbetween adding each egg.
Fold in your creme fraiche.
Place in your baking tin on top of the vanilla shortbread.
Place in oven and bake for 45 -50 minuted until a its risen and a dark golden brown in colour.
Leave to cool, do not worry if it cracks and sinks on cooling, its meant too and means you have done it right 🙂
Chill in fridge until ready to serve, will keep for at least 4 days.
If you are none to keen on the shortbread base option heres a traditional crumb base recipe.
300g crushed digestive biscuits ( you can use Ginger snaps or hobnobs for a stronger flavoured & textured base if you like)
200g unsalted buter
melt butter and mix in biscuit base, pat firmly into lined tinned and proceed with filling recipe as above.
Alternative fillings- fold fresh raspberries or blueberries into filling before you place in tin to bake..or even malteasers or chopped snickers or mars bars for a dessert for the big kid in us all.
Toppings – place a punnet of blueberries or raspberries in a pan with 150g icing sugar and 100mls of orange juice.
Heat until sugar has dissolved and fruit has just started to swell. Chill and serve over cheesecake with fresh cream or ice cream.
Or simply spread over a chocolate spread like Nutella, cut a slice, curl up on sofa with a glass of rich red wine and scoff
© The cake-shaker 2010