New York blueberry cheesecake

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The Swedish equivalent to Nigella is certainly Leila Lindholm, who despite being a properly trained chef, got famous for her domestic goddess style baking on TV. Her recipes are well-known and very good, so when I wanted to make a proper New York style cheesecake I reached for her recipe.

My colleagues (who seem to be the only ones I bake for) really enjoyed it. And although it split (because I needed the oven and couldn’t leave it in the residual heat) it still looked great! And it’s delicious! It’s not too sweet but still has a nice sweetness, nice texture and freshness from the berries.

New York blueberry cheesecake, serves 12

Base:

300 g digestive biscuits

150 g melted butter

Filling:

600g philadelphia 

250 ml fromage frais

80 g caster sugar

65 g corn flour

2 tsp vanilla

3 eggs

100 ml double cream

200 g white chocolate of good quality

150 g fresh blueberries 

Pre-heat oven to 175C. Crush the biscuits in a food processor and mix with the melted butter. Press the mixture onto the base of a springform, Ø 24 cm. Bake the base for 10 minutes. Leave to cool. 

Raise the temperature to 200C. Beat cream cheese and fromage frais in a bowl. Add sugar, corn flour and vanilla. Add one egg at the time and then the cream. Melt the chocolate in a bain marie and add to the mixture. Pour the mixture into the tin and bake for 40 minutes. Cover with tin foil when golden brown on top as to not brown too much. Turn off the oven and leave the cake in the residual heat for 30 minutes. Keep refrigerated. 

 

Dinner at my local

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After a full on day at the Goodwood Revival we were cold and seriously hungry, and I was really pleased with myself for booking a table at my local pub for dinner. We went there straight from the train and after looking at the menu for two seconds we all settled for steak and ordered three hanger steak, red wine (for mum and me) and cider (for dad).

The hanger steak arrived quickly accompanied by shallot purée, amandine potatoes, girolles, carrots, spinach and jus. It was delicious and just the hearty type of food we craved!

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After the maincourse we could relax a bit (I certainly know where my hunger panic comes from…) and ordered two puddings to share. One pretty-as-a-picture lemon meringue pie with lemon jelly and one cheesecake with plum icecream, ginger bread mousse, plums and blackberries. Both were delicious and perfectly executed.

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I’m so pleased to have this amazing pub just around the corner. The pub bit is cozy and offers nice snacks and the restaurant bit is just as rustic but with really good food!

The Sands End, 135-137 Stephendale Rd, London SW6 2PR

Saffron cheesecake

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This saffron cheesecake would be considered christmassy in Sweden, where we use saffron mainly for the holiday season (apart from in fish soup), however in the rest of the world it would probably just be a nice cheesecake with saffron, which is why I’m posting it post-Christmas (well that, and the fact that I didn’t have time around Christmas).

Saffron cheesecake, serves 10

Base:

200 g digestive biscuits

100 g melted butter

Filling:

400 g cream cheese

100 ml milk 

115 ml caster sugar

1 tsp gelatin powder 

1 1/2 tbsp saffron strands 

1 egg 

Mix the digestives into crumbs in a food processor, add the butter and press onto the base of a Ø 20-25 cm springform and pre-bake for 10 minutes at 150 C.

Meanwhile mix the cream cheese with caster sugar in a bowl. Heat up the milk with the saffron and add the gelatine. Leave to cool a little and mix in with the cream cheese. Lastly, mix in an egg and pour the filling into the tin. Bake for 20 minutes in 150C oven. It should still be quivering in the middle but set otherwise. 

Elderflower cheesecake

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With inspiration from Swedish blog Matrepubliken I decided to use up some of my homemade cordial and make an elderflower cheesecake for the office. As you may know by now my colleagues are terribly retro and love cheesecake so I try to come up with new seasonal flavours once in a while. This one is not too sweet and actually feels quite light.

Elderflower cheesecake, serves 8

200 g digestives

75 g salted butter, melted

400 g Philadelphia

2 eggs

2 gelatin leaves

50 ml milk

250 ml concentrated elderflower cordial (after taste)

Crumble the biscuits in a food processor and mix in the butter. Flatten on the base of a springform and bake for 10 minutes in 175C oven. Lower the temperature to 150C. 

Beat Philadelphia and the eggs until smooth. Soak the gelatin. Heat up the milk, squeeze the excess water out of the gelatin and add it to the milk. Stir to dissolve. 

Add the elderflower cordial and the milk mixture to the cheese mixture. Mix well and pour it onto the base and bake for 20-30 minutes until just set in 150C oven. Leave to cool. 

White chocolate cheesecake

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The March cakes for the office were only two as some people took time off to have a longer Easter break. And since we had burgers for lunch the same day I expected some cake to be left over. But no, they went down a treat!

Especially this white chocolate cake courtesy of Mary Berry was very popular! It is not too sweet, and that is probably part of the success. That, and using good quality chocolate. There are so many bad and far too sweet versions of white chocolate in the shops. I used Green & Blacks and it was good enough to eat plain and really worked in the cheesecake too.

I decorated my cake with Easter eggs as it was the Thursday before Easter, but other choccies or some fresh berries work well too.

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White chocolate cheesecake, serves 8

Adapted from Mary Berry’s recipe.

Base:
50g butter
25g dark chocolate  
150g digestive biscuits, crushed

Filling:
300g white chocolate, broken into pieces 
400g full fat cream cheese
150 ml soured cream
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract

To serve:
Dusting of cocoa powder 

Pre-heat oven to 160°C. Grease and line the base of a Ø 20 cm spring form cake tin with non-stick paper. Melt butter and chocolate in small saucepan over a low heat. Stir in crushed biscuits and press evenly over the base of the tin – chill in the fridge.

Break the white chocolate into a bowl and melt very gently over a pan of hot water (do not allow the chocolate to become too hot), stir occasionally with a spoon until runny and smooth.

 Whisk the cream cheese and eggs together in a large bowl until smooth, add soured cream and vanilla and whisk again until completely smooth with no lumps. Stir in the melted chocolate and mix together.

Pour in the tin and spread evenly over the chilled base. Bake in preheated oven for about 45 minutes until firm around the edge and just set in the middle. Remove from the oven. Using a small palette knife run the knife around the edge of the tin and then allow to cool and chill. Remove the outside ring and lift base onto serving plate.

 

Impromptu cheesecake with almond butter

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When inviting a friend over for dinner the same week as your office Christmas party and other outings, there might not be much time to prepare the meal in question. Luckily, I have a few tricks up my sleeve. Make a nice dip and serve with pitta chips while you make the maincourse. Then whip up an impromptu cheesecake with almond butter and you have a very happy dinner guest.

The cheesecake takes literally minutes to prepare and although the ingredients are quite humble – together they are just awesome. So do try this at home.

Impromptu cheesecake with almond butter, serves 2

6 digestive biscuits

200 g Philadelphia cheese

2-3 tbsp icing sugar

1 tsp vanilla

4 generous tsp almond butter

Crumble the biscuits. Place in a ziplock bag and smash with a rolling pin/ wooden spoon until crumbs. Mix Philadelphia and icing sugar either by hand or with an electric whisk. Layer biscuit crumbs, cheese mixture and almond butter in two glasses. Serve. 

Vanilla cheesecake with muscovado

Sometimes it can be quite fortunate not finding what one is looking for. Like this cheesecake for example, I decided to come up with my own recipe when I couldn’t find the perfect recipe.

And this one turned out really good! The muscovado sugar adds a buttery flavour that contributes the vanilla. And with the raspberry syrup on top to cut through the creaminess, this is a winner, and if I may say so myself, pretty darn perfect!

This cake was the second one my colleagues go to try to celebrate the November birthdays, but I will make it plenty of times ahead I am sure.

Vanilla cheesecake, serves 10

200 g digestive biscuits

70 g softened butter

600 g Philadelphia cheese

150 ml light muscovado sugar

100 ml caster sugar

2 eggs

2 tbsp milk

1/2 tsp gelatine powder

Raspberry syrup:

170 g raspberries

75 ml caster sugar

1 whole star anise

2 gelatine leaves

Crumble the digestives in a food processor. Add the butter and mix thoroughly. Line the baste of a 20 cm springform with baking parchment and press the biscuit crumbs onto it. Bake in 175C for 15 minutes.

While the base is browning, mix the filling. Beat cream cheese with eggs and sugar with an electric whisk until smooth. Stir in the milk and the gelatine. Pour the mixture onto the springform and spread it out evenly. Bake in a low oven for 30 minutes. The cheesecake should be set around the edges but still gooey in the middle. It will set more while cooling. Leave to cool completely.

Put the gelatine leaves in a bowl of water, covered. Pour raspberries,sugar and star anise in a sauce pan and bring to the boil. Cook for a further 20 minutes. Remove the star anise and the kernels with a sieve. Pur the mixture back into the saucepan and add the gelatine. Heat it up until the gelatine has melted. Stir to combine and leave it to cool as much as possible without it setting. Spread it onto the cheesecake and place it in the fridge for a minimum of four hours for it to set.