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Desserts & Ices: Lemon cheesecake with fresh flowers

By Bake Club

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Preparation time 30 minutes (plus soaking, cooling and chilling)

Cooking time 8 minutes

Servings SERVES 8–10

Pretty as a picture, this delightful cheesecake has a surprise filling of lemon curd and a colourful topping of colourful fresh flowers. If you buy the flowers, make sure they are ones designed for culinary use and haven’t been sprayed with insecticide.

  • For the biscuit base
  • 190g (6½oz) digestive biscuits
  • 50g (2oz) unsalted butter
  • 1tsp ground cinnamon
  • For the cheesecake mixture
  • 7 leaves of gelatine
  • 680g (1½lb) cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 175g (6oz) caster sugar
  • 125ml (4fl oz) double cream
  • 125ml (4fl oz) lemon juice
  • 2tsp finely grated lemon zest
  • For the filling and decoration
  • 165g (5½oz) lemon curd
  • 100g (3½oz) small edible flowers, eg pansies and nasturtium petals
  
  • Making the biscuit base

     

    2 steps

  • 1

    Making the biscuit base Preheat the oven to 150°C (fan 130°C)/300°F/gas 2. Reduce the biscuits to crumbs in a food processor. Melt the butter and stir it into the crumbs with the cinnamon.
    How to make a biscuit base

  • 2

    Making the biscuit base Press the crumb mixture firmly over the base of a 23cm (9in) spring-clip cake tin in an even layer and bake in the oven for 8 minutes. Leave to cool.

  • Making the cheesecake mixture

     

    3 steps

  • 1

    Making the cheesecake mixture Soak the gelatine leaves in a bowl of cold water for 5 minutes until softened.
    How to use gelatin

  • 2

    Making the cheesecake mixture Meanwhile, beat the cream cheese and sugar together until combined. Bring 3 tablespoons of the cream to the boil and take the pan off the heat. Squeeze out the gelatine leaves and add them to the hot cream, stirring until they have dissolved completely.

  • 3

    Making the cheesecake mixture Add to the cream cheese mixture with the lemon juice, stirring until the ingredients are evenly mixed. Whip the remaining cream until just holding its shape and fold in with the lemon zest.

  • Assembling the cheesecake

     

    4 steps

  • 1

    Assembling the cheesecake Pour half the cheesecake mixture into the cake pan over the biscuit base. Spread the lemon curd on top to within 3cm (1¼in) of the edges. Top with the rest of the cheesecake mixture, spreading it level with a spatula or palette knife.

  • 2

    Assembling the cheesecake Chill in the refrigerator for 12 hours before removing the cheesecake from the pan and transferring it to a serving plate.

  • 3

    Assembling the cheesecake Just before serving, arrange small edible flowers over the top of the cheesecake.

  • Expert Tip

    When crushing biscuits in a food processor, drop them down the feeder tube of the machine with the motor running so they are evenly reduced to crumbs and there are no chunks of biscuits rattling round the bowl.

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