January 15, 2012

Non Baked Cheesecake

Now if you are after something to fix that ultimate craving - a non baked cheesecake usually can hit the mark in no time at all! Just use the recipe below and adapt with whatever that craving might be - a little chocolate or caramel, fresh berries or boozy boozy... it's all up to you. As this is a non bake it is easy to modify without going wrong - just taste as you go and adjust as your tastebuds tell you too! :) Happy non baking!
This was our Xmas cake - amaretto chocolate cheesecake with a
homemade amaretti biscuit & shortbread & whitechocolate base
(which was far too thick a base but... tasty!)

For a simple plain cheesecake to add your own signature touch to you will need..

250g biscuits (digestive/chocolate-digestive/gingernut/shortbread/amaretti.... your choice)
100g butter (to bind the biscuits together)
sometimes I add melted chocolate or roasted almonds and even chocolate coated popping candy to the base as well - if you are adding melted chocolate though beware.... it may be very difficult to cut though not impossible maybe a bit messy.. but lovely tasting none the less!

600g cream cheese
300ml double cream (whipped)
100ml icing sugar
and whatever combo of flavours you want to add
 - 30ml alcohol (amaretto,baileys, cointreau,lemoncello, coffee flavour...)
 - 100g chocolate (white,milk,dark,flavoured)
 - 2lemons, iuice & zest
- fresh fruit dusted in icing sugar
 - biscuit pieces, marshmallows, nuts, maple syrup, honey, vanilla.....

lightly dust with cocoa or icing sugar, top with a salted caramel, chocolate ganache, chocolate flakes/shavings, nuts or fruity compote

This really is the easiest of cakes to adapt so let your tastebuds guide you and imagination run wild!

To make the base put the biscuits in a plastic bag (sealable would be best so they don't fly everywhere). Melt the butter in  a saucepan on a very low heat. Take off heat just before finished melting fully (you don't want to colour the butter, just get it into liquid form).

Pour the biscuits into the butter and give it a good stir until completely mixed (this will ensure it sets properly and isn't all crumbly). If adding extras like chocolate or nuts add now (or add on top of base - up to you). Press the mixture into a spring based removable tin (9-10"). You don't want too thick a base  - maybe 1-1.5cm deep. Press firmly with your fingers until evenly distributed and put in the fridge to set while you make the filling.

Whip the double cream with an electric mixer until light and fluffy and add in the icing sugar (don't over whip or it will turn curdly looking which tastes almost dry and you could even end up with butter!)

Place all of the cream cheese into a separate bowl and stir to loosen up and then fold in the whipping cream. Once mixed evenly fold in your flavours and / or bits.

Take the base out of the fridge and spoon the filling mixture on top  - fill up to the top of the tin. If you have leftovers you can make small ones in ramekins that you have in the cupboard from all of those store bought puddings :). Cover well & freeze to pull out when you need  a little something!

Put in the fridge to set - about an hour but to be honest, if you don't mind it being a bit gooey you could really eat it at any time - it just cuts nicer if you set it longer.

Do bring out of fridge for 10 min or so before serving and top with your choice of topping (or not).

It really is that easy.
Below are some combos I like for fillings to the basic recipe
Amaretto & Chocolate:
Mix amaretti biscuits with shortbread and added melted white chocolate to the base. For the filling separate mix into two, add melted dark chocolate to one half and amaretto to the other half and layer (see pix at beginning of blog). Top with shavings of chocolate and gold leaf (it was our Christmas cake after all so a little bling never hurts!)
Baileys Chocolate
Add baileys to the filling along with shavings of milk chocolate. Top with shavings of milk chocolate
Add vanilla essence to filling. Make or use store bought raspberry jam and swirl it into the filling by spooning in 1-2tbsp and using the handle of the spoon gently make swirling patterns throughout the cake. For the topping drizzle a little of the jam on top and cover with fresh raspberries. OR... add vanilla, separate filling into two parts. Spoon half the mixture onto the base, drizzle on raspberry jam and or top with fresh raspberries. Carefully spoon remaining mixture on top. Finish with fresh raspberries and shavings of chocolate.
Boozy Lemon
Add 50ml lemoncello to mix along with zest of one lemon. Drizzle with lemon curd or just a bit of lemon zest.

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