Patience isn’t one of my virtues and this blog post is a case in point. With two or three other updates floating around, I’d planned this one for a couple of weeks time but it’s too difficult to wait. This cheesecake is simply delicious and I’m keen to share it!
On Sunday I dusted off the domestic halo that’s been in a bottom drawer for several months and made this Baked Rhubarb Cheesecake for a Fathers Day treat. Having done so I can’t keep it under my hat for another day let alone fourteen, it’s just too scrumptious. Also rhubarb is in season and strawberries are on the verge (literally if you stop for the Wexford ones) which we know is great for the environment if we choose them instead of buying out of season fruit.
If you’re a regular buyer of The Sunday Times newspaper and in particular the version that was on sale on 28th April 2013, you may already have tried baking this very special desert that was nestled into Mona and Ron Wise’s weekly food column, but if you missed it I’m reproducing it here with kind permission.
It’s worth noting that I came across the recipe as a result of finding the rhubarb cordial on Mona’s blog at wisewords.ie which she refers to below. The cordial is a great way of getting two meals/drinks out of a couple of bunches of rhubarb and the baked rhubarb used as the cheesecake topping is a by-product of it.
Custardy Baked Cheesecake Recipe with roasted Rhubarb
(makes 8 – 10 slices)
For the base
250 g digestive biscuits
100 g cream crackers
100 g pistachios
100 g pecans
150 g butter, melted
For the cheesecake filling
500 g Kilbeg mascarpone cream cheese, room temp
300 g crème fraîche
100 g caster sugar (or honey)
Zest of one orange
For the roasted Rhubarb topping
How to prepare it
Line the base of a springform pan (with a removable base) with parchment paper. Place the biscuits, cream crackers, pistachios and pecans into the food processor and process until finely crushed. (Alternatively, if you do not have a food processor, place them in a ziplock bag and use a rolling-pin to grind the biscuits and nuts to a small crumb-like texture.
Add the melted butter and continue to mix it in until well combined. Transfer the biscuit mixture to the prepared pan and press firmly over the base and sides of the pan. Place in the fridge for 30 minutes, giving it time to set.
Pre-heat oven to 160ºC
Place the cream cheese and crème fraîche and sugar in a bowl and mix until smooth. (Ideally you should use a stand mixer with the paddle attachment). Add the eggs and zest of orange and process until well combined (4 mins).
Place the (already prepared) biscuit base pan on an oven tray (in case of overflowing) and pour the filling into the base and bake in pre-heated oven for one hour, or until just set. Turn off the oven and leave the cheesecake in the oven for a half hour with the door open. Cover with cling film and refrigerate for 2 hours.
When ready to serve, top the cheesecake with the roasted rhubarb.
Optional .. you can serve a small dollop of whipped cream on top of this if desired but it is not needed.
Because the roasted rhubarb is added to the top of the baked cheesecake it can be replaced with any favourite seasonal fruits. I added strawberries to half of it as our polytunnel is overflowing with them right now and our girls aren’t big fans of rhubarb.
One of the reassuring things about Mona & Ron’s recipe’s are that they’re really easy to follow. There’s no questions or queries, they do what they say on the box (or in the book if you buy The Chef and I).
So if you have an occasion coming up and are looking for a special dessert, why not give this one a try. Your friends will love you for it.