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Thursday, January 8, 2015

Blueberry Cheesecake

No Bake Blueberry Cheesecake by Mel from Baking Makes Things Better

Believe it or not, this Blueberry Cheesecake was inspired by a Broccoli Salad!  I absolutely recommend you try the Broccoli salad, it’s one of Simon and mines faves.  The recipe calls for Blueberries, which is something I haven’t really eaten in the past and we had been leaving them out of the salad because they haven’t been in season.  But, they are in season now, and I am loving them!

This is a no-bake cheesecake and is packed full of blueberry – none of that plain cheesecake business with a few blueberries scattered on top, or a swirl of syrup (although, I have done that too!), this one has blueberries all the way through.  Which, has got to be good for you right, considering they are super high in antioxidants?

I topped my cheesecake with a thin layer of plain cheesecake mix with blueberry jam swirled through it.  I also made candied lemon peel to sprinkle over the top to pick up on the lemon juice that is in the cheesecake - I’ll include how to make this in the recipe below.  However, if you can’t be bothered with the extra work, I think spreading some whipped cream over the top and decorating with some extra blueberries or simply grating some white chocolate over the top would be perfect (this would be amazing if you use the same biscuits that I did for the base).

Blueberry Cheesecake by Baking Makes Things Better

350g biscuits (I used Farmbake’s White Choc variety and they were delish!)
80g butter, melted

3 teaspoons gelatine
¼ cup boiling water
375g cream cheese
½ cup caster sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 cup cream
3 cups blueberries (this worked out to be three small punnets from the supermarket)

¾ cup of cheesecake mixture (reserved from main recipe)
1 teaspoon lemon juice
4 teaspoons blueberry jam

Candied lemon peel:
3 lemons
4 cups water
2 cups white sugar, or as needed

Grease a 20cm round tin.  Place the biscuits into a food processor and process to a fine crumb.  Mix through the melted butter.  Press into the base of the prepared tin and place in the refrigerator to set.

In a glass, sprinkle the gelatine into the quarter cup of boiling water.  Mix until dissolved, then set aside.

Using a hand beater or stand mixer, in a large bowl beat together the cream cheese, caster sugar, vanilla essence and one tablespoon of lemon juice.  Once the mixture is a smooth buttery texture, add in the cream and gelatine and beat until the mixture is smooth again. 
At this point, if you want to create a marbled effect on the top of the cake as I have one, reserve three quarters of a cup of the cheesecake mixture into a small bowl and set aside.
Using a blender, puree the blueberries (some bits of skin will still remain).  Pour the blueberry puree into the main cheesecake mix and stir through until combined.
Pour the mixture over the prepared base and place into the refrigerator to set.

To make the candied lemon peel, boil 2 cups of water in a small saucepan.
While the water is heating up, remove the rind from the lemons and cut it into thin strips.  I find the easiest way to do this is to use a vegetable peeler and peel off the skin, then cut it into thin strips using a small knife. 
Once the water is boiling, add the lemon peel strips.  Boil for about 5 minutes, until tender.  Remove peels from the water.  Replace the water with 2 new cups of water and stir in the sugar. Return to a boil, add the peels, and boil for about 15-20 minutes until the peels translucent.  Stir regularly as the mixture can burn. 
Taste a piece of the peel – if it is bitter tasting, change the water and sugar so you have a fresh pot and re-boil the peel.  Continue to do this until you are satisfied with the flavour.  Drain and allow to dry either on a wire rack or on a paper towel.

To make the thin marbled layer on the top of the cheesecake mix a teaspoon of lemon juice through the reserved cheesecake mixture.  Once the top of the blueberry portion of the cheesecake in the tin has set across the top, gently spread the plain mix across the top in a thin layer.  Dollop blobs of the jam randomly around the top of the cake.  Using a skewer or a fork, rake through the jam blobs to swirl them into the cheesecake mixture.  Place into the refrigerator for 5 minutes before topping with the candied lemon peel and extra blueberries.  Refrigerate for at least 6 hours or overnight before cutting into wedges and serving.

Blueberry Cheesecake by Mel from Baking Makes Things Better

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