White Chocolate and Fresh Berry Cheesecake

| November 21, 2012 | 0 Comments

by Chelsea Winter

I’ve had cheesecake on the brain lately, and the inspiration for this recipe came about for several reasons.

  1. Lately all the red, glorious new season berries have been twinkling invitingly at me, beggin to be paired with something creamy.
  2. I wanted to create something that looked better than the last cheesecake I made (which tastes great but my photography skills back then left lots to be desired). More importantly, I wanted to make sure the recipe was easy enough for everyone to achieve the same great looking result I did.
  3. Whittaker’s launched their delicious White Raspberry block (20c from each block sold went to the New Zealand Breast Cancer Foundation during October 2012). I tasted it and thought of cheesecake.

So after two failed and ugly attempts* to get it right (don’t be fooled into thinking the world of cooking is glamorous – it isn’t, by any stretch of the imagination) I finally nailed it. And here it is for you to enjoy. It’s visually impressive, quick and easy to put together and sinfully decadent.

Say cheese!

 

Ingredients

350g packet biscuits (I used double chocolate)
75g softened (almost melted) butter
250g tub cream cheese
Zest of 1 lemon
250g good quality white chocolate (I used Whittaker’s White Chocolate & Raspberry block)
1/3 cup cream
1 cup cream, whipped
2 punnets fresh strawberries or raspberries (or both), hulled
¼ cup melted jam or sugar syrup, for serving

Method

Line the base of a round springform cake tin with a cut round of baking paper.

Place the biscuits in a food processor and process to a fine crumb (you can also smash the biscuits in a bag with a rolling pin if you don’t’ have a food processor). Add the butter and process until well combined. Tip the crumbs into the cake tin and using your fingers, press into the base and up the sides to form a shell of even thickness – about 6 – 7cm high. Refrigerate.

Using an electric beater, beat the cream cheese, lemon zest and 1 tbsp of the liquid cream for a few minutes until fluffy and well mixed. Set aside.

Place the broken up white chocolate and the 1/3 cup liquid cream over a double boiler (or in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of barely simmering water), and heat until just melted, stirring every now and then. Add a spoonful at a time to the cream cheese mixture, beating well after each addition. Gently fold in the whipped cream. (At this point, you can also fold in a handful of fresh berries if you like.)

Pour the cream mixture into the biscuit base and smooth out the top with a spatula. Cover and refrigerate for an hour or so, or until needed.

When you’re ready to tuck into your cheesecake, arrange the fresh berries on top, brush with a little of the melted jam for shine, slice and serve.

* In case you’re interested in my failures, here’s what happened. The first time I tried to get fancy and make it a ‘white chocolate mousse cheesecake’. As well as dirtying what seemed like every mixing bowl in New Zealand for the vast array of ingredients (egg yolks, egg whites, melted chocolate, cream cheese, whipped cream and so on), in the end it didn’t even set properly. I was angry at it and it went down the insinkerator. The second time, the filling was fabulous but I used frozen berries as well as fresh for the topping, to see if they would hold up in a pinch. They didn’t hold up in a pinch. After 30 minutes the cheesecake closely resembled fetid roadkill on a plate, which mercifully actually still tasted fine –this one was eaten for dessert.  

Chelsea Winter For MasterChef NZ winner Chelsea Winter, cooking and sharing great food goes hand in hand with spending quality time with family and friends – as well as nourishing body and soul. Her approach to food is to relax, have fun, be creative, eat everything in moderation and use quality, seasonal produce. See more of Chelsea’s recipes on her website here, and be part of her food journey on Facebook here.

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Category: Food & Drink, Recipes

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