Cheesecake is by far my favourite dessert.
I love the juxtaposition of a crunchy, gritty base and the creamy, soft, thick middle. I love that it is a dessert that can be played around with by changing, toppings and flavourings, it is a dessert that never feels too indulgent but manages to be delicious and something that can either be whipped up at short notice or be a complex masterpiece if you have the time.
My little sister is also a fan of cheesecakes (particularly mine, “this is as good as shop bought” is the highest praise that can be given from her) and had requested one for her birthday based on one she ate recently – a clotted cream cheesecake.
I had never made one before and the internet – for the first time ever – let me down in finding the sort of recipe I wanted. The only cheesecakes that involved clotted cream were baked ones and when experimenting I always think it’s wise to use a little of what you know and what I know is that baked cheesecakes and me don’t get on, they always turn out dry for me.
So, lacking a recipe I am adapting an old faithful and hoping for the best.
I’ve used brown sugar in my base as when it’s baked I think it gives a bit of a caramel flavour which I love but any sugar will do, Demerara works particularly well.
200g Digestive Biscuits Crushed
75g Melted Butter
75g Brown Sugar
300g Cream Cheese
250g Mascarpone Cheese
250g Clotted Cream
50g Caster Sugar
1tsp vanilla essence
Crush up biscuits, I normally use my mini chopper but there is something both fun and therapeutic about using a rolling pin to bash them to bits. Mix the crushed biscuits in with the sugar and pour over the melted butter, combine with a wooden spoon before tipping into a springform or loose bottomed tin -If you don’t have either of these use a pie dish or other shallow dish-, I find using a metal spoon gives the smoothest finish for a buttery, biscuit base. Once you’re happy with your base, bake at 180 for 10 minutes, then allow to cool before putting it in the fridge.
To make the filling combine the cream cheese, mascarpone cheese, clotted cream, sugar and vanilla essence in a bowl. You may wonder why something that already contains a lot of cheese and cream needs sugar, it’s because mascarpone can be quite tart and the sugar takes the edge off. The mixture is super thick and tastes amazing try and control yourself (I failed), and pour/splat it on top of your cooled base, again use the back of a metal spoon to get a smooth finish.
This can actually be eaten now or refrigerated until you’re ready to eat, it is a great dessert if you need to make something last minute as it takes very little time and it looks and tastes gorgeous.
I decorated mine with an “A” using blueberries and raspberries as it was for my little sisters birthday, but like all good cheesecakes it can have pretty much anything used as a topping or just devoured as it is