Tag Archives: cheesecake

I love cheesecakes!

21 Jan

Yes, I’ve got a sweet tooth AND I love rich food.  Not good for the waist line at all!  Doesn’t help that I’m short either.  This means that I have to spread the guilt around when I bake (or in this case, don’t bake) .  A potluck is always a good excuse to cook something sinful in terms of calories, but a bad time to experiment with a new recipe or so I’ve learnt!

In Singapore, there’s a very popular dessert / snack called Jelly Hearts.  They cost a pretty penny to buy but are really popular despite the price.  After having tried to make it myself, I reckon that if you aren’t fussy about appearances, I could probably make a decent one.  I have also discovered that my freezer shelf is lopsided after cutting my cheesecake.  The layers had set in uneven layers.

There isn’t actually a recipe that would give me the exact measurements for the aluminium tin pan I had.  So I tried to guess the amounts required.  Not too good I must say – the crust was over the top thick and the jelly not thick enough!  I didn’t help things by spilling a good portion of the jelly when I banged into the fridge whilst trying to put the cake into the freezer.  Also, I didn’t have time to nip out to get the strawberries (which do a mainly decorative job in my opinion)  I’m just waiting for another potluck to try this thing out again with the correct proportions (as I have written below) and maybe with some strawberries.

Strawberry Jelly Cheesecake

Makes a 20cm by 20cm by 5cm cheesecake (the correct proportions)

Ingredients

150g digestive biscuits

75g butter

250g cream cheese (room temperature)

1 tbs gelatine powder

50 g sugar

1/2 cup hot water

1/2 tsp vanilla essence

1 box strawberry jello

Method

  1. Crush the digestive biscuits into crumbs.
  2. Melt butter in the microwave for 10 seconds and stir and repeat if required.  Be careful not to burn by over heating.
  3. Mix the biscuit crumbs into the butter and pour into baking tray.  Place baking tray into the freezer to set biscuit base.  It should take about 20 minutes.
  4. Bring the cream cheese to room temperature and add sugar and vanilla essence, blending until smooth.
  5. Dissolve gelatin in hot water and add to the cream cheese mixture.
  6. Pour cream cheese into baking pan and put into the freezer for 30 minutes until set.
  7. Follow the instruction on the box of jello to prepare jello.
  8. Pour jelly over the set cream cheese layer and put in the fridge to set.
  9. Cut and serve chilled.

Tips

  1. It’s always easier to blend cream cheese after bringing to room temperature.
  2. The biscuits can be crushed with a rolling pin and a plastic bag or a food processor.  With the plastic bag, be careful not to make a hole in it, otherwise, it’s going to be a mess!
  3. You can use an electric mixer to blend the cream cheese but I use a food processor as I don’t have a mixer.  You could even do it manually but it takes arm endurance sometimes.
  4. Using the freezer cuts the setting time.  If you wish to leave the cake in for more than 30 minutes, I suggest you use the fridge to set the layer to avoid ice crystal formation.
  5. Don’t allow the gelatine to cool before mixing with the cream cheese as it will set on the edges of the container you used to dissolve it, resulting in a cream cheese layer that is too soft.
  6. Make sure the cream cheese layer is set well before proceeding with the next layer otherwise it will mix.
  7. You can set the jello in the freezer if you are in a hurry but remember to bring it down to the fridge to chill to avoid ice crystals!!
  8. You could use lemon jello or raspberry jello too!  In fact, you could be adventurous and try other flavors!
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Cherry Cheesecake

15 Nov

 

Cherrie

I don’t have photos of the cheesecakes.  They were too ugly.  They were so ugly that when I offered it at work, people tried to be polite and make a dash for the door.  That is until one brave soul came and ate it.  Then thecupcakes all disappeared in a flash.  So don’t judge a book by it’s cover.  It’s the inside that counts

We went to Queen Victoria Market on Saturday for our regular groceries.  The hubs likes going near closing time as people try to get rid of their wares at super low prices.  The cherries were originally going for $8/kg.  But the guy said “$6/kg! Hurry up! I want to go home!”  So I said ” 0.5kg please?” His answer? “Nope.  0.5kg $4 1kg $6.”  So how was I to buy just 0.5 kg.

The cherries were divine and the bubs polished off a small bowl of it after dinner.  The remaining were a bit unripe.  I remembered a recipe from The Basics: A Really Useful Cookbook by Anthony Telsford for cheesecake.  His explanation for the finer details of getting the perfect outcomes for various dishes were very helpful.   Don’t overbeat the cream cheese, bake in a water bath were some tips which I felt made sense.  But I had returned the book to the library just the day before!  So the internet, here I come!

I found a cheesecake recipe (with beautiful photos to inspire me) at The Pleasure Monger.  I substituted cherries for strawberries, thinking that I could create beautiful cheesecakes like her.  But I didn’t have a cake tin.  So I made cheesecake cupcakes.  My result tasted heavenly.  Just the right texture with just the right amount of tartness and sweet.  But. Just. Plain. Ugly.  I attribute it to my inexperience with the cherry sauce.  Not sure if it is because of my substitution of cherry for strawberry or my omission of the small amount of orange juice.  I think the next time I make this, I’d just add my cherries directly into my cream cheese and see what happens.

In my very sparse kitchen, I also have to improvise or make do.  No handheld cake mixer available.  So I used my food processor to do all the work.

Cherry Cheesecake

(adapted from The Pleasure Monger)

Makes 12 medium sized cupcakes

Base

150g Digestive biscuits

50g unsalted butter, melted

  1. Preheat oven to 150 degree Celsius
  2. Line 2 muffin trays with cupcake holders
  3. Break up the biscuits and pour the butter into the food processor and process
  4. Divide mixture equally into all the holders and press down
  5. Bake for about 7 minutes at 150 degree Celsius
  6. Take trays out and set aside to cool completely

Cream cheese filling

500g cream cheese

100g caster sugar

2 medium sized eggs

1 tsp vanilla paste

  1. Bring the cream cheese to room temperature – it helps with the mixing.
  2. Add sugar and blend using food processor.
  3. Add eggs one by one and continue blending.
  4. Add vanilla paste and mix
  5. Pour over cake bases that have been prepared

Cherry topping

150g Cherry washed and pitted

1 tbs caster sugar

1/2 tbs cornflour

  1. Process all the above in a food processor
  2. Pass the contents through a sieve to remove the larger bits
  3. Spoon over the cream cheese filling

Baking the cake

  1. Place muffin tray in a deep tray and fill the deep tray with water to 2.3 way up the muffin tin.
  2. Bake at 150 degree Celsius for 40 minutes.
  3. Cool cakes by leaving the oven door open to avoid having the cakes sinking.

I’ll update with actual cupcake picture when I bake these again.  But now, they are in my colleagues’ stomachs.