Friday, 28 December 2012

and White Chocolate and Strawberry Cheesecake

and a day for boxing
Boxing Day Cheesecake

Well Christmas is all over. I still have the tree up and there is one lonely present under it still to be given. I am not sure of the custom. Am I supposed to take it down before New Years? It will defiantly come down sometimes this holidays.

The last Christmas event this holidays was on Boxing Day lunch at my plus one's parents house. Christmas is often very hot her in Perth. So a cold lunch is often preferred over a hot dinner. It was around 40C (104F) on Christmas day and a refreshing 37C (98F) on boxing day. I offered to bake the cheesecake for dessert and it turned out better then I had thought. I started it Christmas night when I was exhausted and my mind was struggling to work out even the simplest of equations. I struggled to work out how many cups of sour cream it needed. It should have been simple because the recipe told me. But it wasn't.

White Chocolate and Strawberry Cheesecake

Adapted from Better Homes and Gardens Christmas Cookbook 2012

Preparation time: 20 minutes plus 1 1/2 hours cooling and overnight chilling.
Cooking time: 1 3/4 hours (the oven is off for an hour of this)
Serves: 12

Ingredients for baked cheesecake

  • Cooking oil spray, for greasing
  • 450g cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 200g caster sugar
  • 3 tsp cornflour
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 Tbsp lemon juice, strained
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract/paste
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 3 cups sour cream
  • 1/3 cup strawberry jam
Ingredients for topping
  • 250g cream cheese, chopped, at room temperature
  • 170g white chocolate, melted, cooled
  • 120g unsalted butter, softened
  • 3 tsp lemon juice
  • cherries
  • 200g white chocolate extra
  1. Preheat oven to 180C fan forced. Grease a 20cm spring form tin with cooking spray and line the base and sides with baking paper so it extends 3cm above the sides. Wrap base and sides of tin with alfoil to make it waterproof.
  2. Put cream cheese in a bowl of an electric mixer and beat on low until almost smooth. Add sugar and increase the speed to medium-high and beat for 3 minutes or until smooth. Beat in cornflour. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition, scraping sides of bowl. Beat in juice, vanilla, salt and sour cream until just combined.
  3. Pour 1/3 of the cream cheese mixture into the prepared tin. Top with 1/2 of the jam. Repeat layers, finishing with the cream cheese mixture. Run a skewer through the layers to swirl jam.
  4. Put tin in a deep roasting pan. Pour enough hot water into pan to come up 2-3cm up the side of the tin. Bake for 45 minutes. Turn off the oven and leave the cheese cake in the oven, with the door ajar, to cool for an hour. This will help prevent cracking on the top of the cake. Put tin on a wire rack to cool completely. Remove paper and foil (remove from tin if required then return to tin). Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate, in tin, over night.
  5. To make topping, put cream cheese in a bowl of an electric mixer and beat until smooth and creamy. Gradually beat in chocolate until smooth, then beat in butter and juice.
  6. Put cake on a serving plate. Spread all over with topping and refrigerate until firm.
  7. Melt extra white chocolate in a heat proof bowl, in a microwave or on a stove a top a sauce pan with enough water to sit below the bowl. When melted remove from heat and dip cherries in, allowing excess chocolate to drip off. Place on a baking paper lined cooking tray. Refrigerate.
  8. Remove cake and cherries from refrigerator and decorate cake with cherries.

I had left over white chocolate from dipping the cherries so I poured it over a granite slab and placed it into the refrigerator to set. I then made little curls with a melon baller and covered the cake with them. It looked a little like snow and added to the Christmas feeling. If you don't add the 'snow' a good tip for making the cake look neat is to smooth the topping after it comes out of the refrigerator before you add the cherries. Not a fan of cherries? or are they in short supply? Any chocolate dipped fruit will do. Try strawberries to match the jam. Or change the jam to match the fruit! I am all for changing a cake to suit your own tastes.

The cake was ridiculously creamy and I am pretty sure everyone had at least seconds. It was sweet and refreshing on a hot Boxing day. This is definitely going on my 'to bake again' list.

Until next time.
Love, love Elle.

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