Thursday, 10 May 2012

Buttery Biscuit Base

This recipe started off life as an approximation of a Willie Harcourt-Cooze offering which was published (way back when) in the Sunday Times.  It was first made (with a few alterations) by my sister-in-law and was absolutely devine... 

Neither of us could get our head around using oatcakes to make a cheesecake crust so we both ended up substituting. She used chocolate digestives, I used ginger snaps... in my humble opinion (having tasted another friend’s version when she actually followed the original recipe) I would have to say I think we were 100% right in our choice! 

Oatcakes are not on my top-ten list of things to add to a cheesecake... Cheese board?  Perfect!!  Cheesecake... umm... NO!

Unfortunately we ended up eating this while it was still slightly warm from the oven because I had cheesecake cravings and there just wasn’t time to chill it properly. 

It was good but in a distinctly... ho-hum way.  BUT, the leftovers were polished off the following morning (after the correct recipe-specified amount of cooling down time) when it was... SO... MUCH... BETTER!!  As in: I think I'm in love with a cheesecake!  (How awkward)...

Despite my parent’s kitchen being a ridiculous improvement on mine (so much so it borders on the laughable), there’s still a distinct disadvantage of cooking when I visit them.  Namely: trying to keep recipe, ingredients and cooking implements all in one place from start to finish without them being whisked off and “tidied”.

Firstly I had to rescue the recipe cutting from Dad’s over-enthusiastic recycling binge, leaving me rummaging head first through my parents recycling bins before I could even head out to buy the ingredients. 

On returning and after a second search of the house, my face dropped when Mum owned up that she thought she might have composted it and suggested checking there...

Yes, I was definitely less inclined to rummage head first in there... Looks like the original Willie Harcourt-Cooze recipe is out and Lindsay’s free-styling recipe is in!

And so I started... Grease an 18-cm spring-form cake tin then line with baking parchment.  Turn your back on it for less than a minute to set the oven to preheat at 150˚C.  Turn back... baking parchment has been recycled and cake tin has been stashed back in its drawer... Start again.

Grease an 18-cm spring-form cake tin then line with baking parchment. Turn around and realise while you weren’t looking someone’s sneaked in and turned the oven off... 
Throw a screaming wobble and banish all golden-oldies (read: parents) from the vicinity... Take a deep breath and start a third time safe in the knowledge that when things go wrong now there’s no one else left to blame! 

Baked Chocolate Cheesecake

Preheat the oven to 150˚C.  Grease an 18-cm spring-form cake tin then line with baking parchment.

Combine the ingredients for the base of the cheesecake.  Press into the bottom of the cake tin to form an even layer.  Chill in the fridge for 15 minutes and then bake in the oven for 20 minutes.  Set aside to cool on a wire rack while you make the rest of the cheesecake.

Beat together the cream cheese and quark until smooth.  Beat in the egg yolks one at a time.  Next, stir in the sugar, vanilla, salt and flour until smooth.  Add the 230g melted chocolate and stir until the mixture is a uniform colour.

Pour the mixture over the crust and cook for a further 50 minutes until set but still with a bit of a wobble in the middle.

Leave to cool completely until room temperature and then chill in the fridge overnight.

Serve with crème fraiche and blueberries.
Baked Chocolate Cheesecake

70g dark chocolate, melted
60g ginger snap biscuits, crushed
80g ground almonds
50g butter, melted

230g dark chocolate, melted
300g quark
400g full fat cream cheese
4 egg yolks
100g caster sugar
1tsp vanilla essence
Pinch salt
1tsp plain flour