Food: cheesecake & rice
Using one recipe we create five scrumptious variations that taste as good as they look
ILOVE cheesecake and experimented for a long time to find the perfect filling –thick and creamy but not too sweet (my recipe doesn’t include cream and only a small amount of sugar).
Now I use the same basic recipe to create all kinds of interesting alternatives that are easy to make.
MAKES: 1 MEDIUM-SIZE CHEESECAKE PREPARATION: 10 MIN CHILLING: 15 MIN BAKING: 1 HR 35 MIN CRUST 500ml (2c) cake flour 160g cold butter 100g chopped pecan
nuts or walnuts water BASIC FILLING 3 tubs (230g each) smooth or creamed cottage cheese, or cream cheese 15ml (1T) cornflour juice and zest of
1 lemon 3 extra-large eggs 2 egg yolks 125-180ml (½-¾c)
sugar a pinch of salt 5ml (1t) vanilla
essence TOPPING 250ml (1c) brown
sugar 60ml (¼c) water or
drained apple syrup 1 can (400g) mini
apples Preheat the oven to 180°C. Grease a 23cm springform cake tin with nonstick spray.
1 CRUST Pulse the flour and butter in a food processor until it resembles breadcrumbs (or rub the butter into the flour using your fingertips). Add the nuts, then add just enough water to make a stiff dough. Press onto the bottom and up the sides of the baking tin. Prick and chill for 15 minutes. Bake for 5 minutes then remove from the oven.
2 BASIC FILLING Mix all the ingredients in a large bowl until smooth. Pour into the crust.
3 Lower the oven temperature to 110°C and bake the cake for 1½ hours until just done but still wobbly in the middle.
4 Switch off the oven and let the cake cool down, then chill in the fridge until needed.
5 TOPPING Spoon the sugar into a heavybased pan and add the water or apple syrup. Heat on high until the sugar has melted and turned a golden caramel colour. Don’t stir (you can shake the pan a few times). Watch carefully as it can quickly become too dark and then has a bitter taste.
6 Put the base of the pan in cold water to halt the cooking process. 7 Working quickly, dip the apples in the caramel. Arrange on the cheesecake and pour any leftover caramel syrup over. VARIATION For a lower-carb version, replace the sugar with sweetener such as xylitol, the flour in the crust with ground almonds and the water with whisked egg white. Don’t add the topping, or decorate with fresh fruit.
MAKES: 1 MEDIUM-SIZE CHEESECAKE PREPARATION: 20 MIN BAKING: 1 HR 30 MIN COOKING: 7 MIN GRILLING: 2-3 MIN CRUST 10 sheets phyllo
pastry 125ml (½c) butter,
melted FILLING 1 x batch of basic filling, using just 125ml (½c) sugar TOPPING 180ml (¾c) sugar 250ml (1c) water 1 cinnamon stick finely grated zest
of 1 lemon 200g pecan nuts TO SERVE ground cinnamon
for sprinkling full-cream yoghurt Preheat the oven to 110°C. Grease a 12cm springform cake tin with nonstick spray. 1 CRUST Brush butter on eight of the pastry sheets and stack on top of one another. Transfer to the prepared cake tin.
2 FILLING Beat all ingredients together and spoon into crust.
3 Brush butter on the rest of the pastry sheets, stack them and put on top of the filling. Bake for 1½ hours, turn oven off and leave to cool.
4 TOPPING Cook the sugar, water, cinnamon stick and lemon zest in a saucepan for about 7 minutes or until syrupy, then add the pecan nuts.
5 Spoon syrup over the cooled cake. Switch on the oven and grill the cake until the nuts start turning a darker brown.
6 TO SERVE Sprinkle cinnamon over and serve with yoghurt. (Turn over)
ONE RECIPE, FIVE WAYS BAKLAVA CHEESECAKE
CARAMEL CHEESECAKE CHOCOLATE CHEESECAKE