Sunday, August 21, 2011

Baked Cheesecake

My poor blog is a reflection of my life at the moment...too much emotions and not enough cooking!! Oh the perils of being alive in that we have to FEEL everything so very much all the time. It's so wonderful and so awful all at once. I however have decided that now is a new chapter...time to move on and forward. So hopefully this chapter will include lots of recipes for yummy cakes!

Summer is coming on and I can help but think this makes everything feel better. It's more sunny, not so cold, and there is just a general feeling that things are getting better.

I have now completed my study of seafood this term and am about to move on to red meat. Having not much meat cooking experience I'm really looking forward to this...despite it being a bit gross at times.

We are still working on gateaux cakes in my patisserie class which are so lovely but the bane of my existence. There are just so many elements and layers and complicated things to consider; it drives me crazy at times. I get so nervous about all the elements not coming together at the right time and everything just falling apart, or splitting, or not setting or being lumpy. On Friday I was getting a little worked up over some gelatine that had set too fast that my tiny international cooking partner mentioned that maybe...possibly I was getting worked up over nothing and of course the cakes came out lovely.

I made some cheese cakes at school this week which were very very yummy. I'll give you the recipe for mini baked blueberry ones. I just made them in muffin tins and made shortcrust pasty for the bases but you could probably just use this recipe for a big one and cook it longer.

Baked Blueberry Mine cheesecakes

For the pastry:
  • 100g butter
  • 50g sugar
  • 150g plain flour
  • Half an egg
  • pinch of salt
  1. Place the butter, sugar and plain flour in a food processor and blitz until it resembles bread crumbs.
  2. Add the egg and blitz until it just comes together (you don't want to over work the pastry or the gluten will stretch and make it tough...just take my word for it.)
  3. Use your hands to bring the pastry together. Give it a light knead to make sure it's smooth (but for only a couple of seconds because again you don't want to make it tough.)
  4. Flatten into a disk, wrap in glad wrap and place in the fridge to rest for at least half an hour.
  5. Once it's rested take the dough out of the fridge, roll out and cut out circles and line a muffin tin with pastry.
  6. Take a fork and lightly prick the surface of all the shells and place back into the fridge for another rest.
  7. After about half an hour take the pastry out of the freezer. Use some baking paper and pastry weights to weigh down the inside of the shells (if you don't have pastry weights you can use uncooked rice or beans.)
  8. Bake the pastry shells for ten minutes at 180 and then remove the weights and cook for another 5 minutes or until slightly golden (they don't need to be completely cooked through as they will return to the oven later when filled.)
Cheese Cake Filling:
  • 190g cream cheese
  • 1/2 lemon zest
  • 105g sugar
  • 100g ricotta
  • 50g mascapone cheese
  • 112g eggs
  • Frozen blueberries
What to do:
  1. Use electric mixer to mix together cream cheese, lemon zest and sugar.
  2. Add mascapone
  3. Add ricotta
  4. Add beaten eggs (just lightly beat them before you add them as it will make it easier to incorporate.)
  5. Pour the mix into your tart shells
  6. Top with as many blueberries as you like
  7. Bake at 180 for 20 minutes or until set on top but still wobbly.

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