Saturday, April 08, 2023

Weekend Cooking: A Tale of Two Cheesecakes

Cheesecake is one of my favourite things to eat and I have shared lots of cheesecakes over the years, but is that going to stop me from talking about two recent cheesecakes I have made? Well, of course not.

But first lets take a look at just some of the cheesecakes I have shared on the blog over the last 14 years! Some of them are straight cheesecake, others incorporate cheesecake elements.

Creamy Ginger Nut Cheesecake (recipe)

Burnt Basque Cheesecake (recipe)

Cheesecake Brownies

Japanese Jiggle Cheesecake

Jelly Slice (recipe

Salted Caramel and Vanilla Cheesecake (recipe)

Classic Baked Cheesecake (recipe)

White Chocolate Cheesecake (recipe)

And now I am going to talk about two very different cheesecakes that I have made over the last month or so.

The first was an Amalfi Lemon Cheesecake from Theo Randall's magnificent cookbook, The Italian Pantry. I have previously posted about how much I enjoyed this book and we continue to enjoy cooking from it, especially the meatball recipe.

I was keen to try this cheesecake recipe as it is different from any cheesecake recipe I have ever tried before. Firstly, the base is made from cantuccini biscuits, which are a type of almond biscotti. The second thing that is different is that it uses a combination of ricotta and mascarpone instead of cream cheese. I was also not able to get Amalfi lemons, so I just used normal lemons. Having talked about the differences, I would like to stress how easy this was to make.

I took this to friends house for a very pleasant Sunday afternoon tea, and it was a hit!

Amalfi Lemon Cheesecake

200g (7oz) cantuccini biscuits
75g (2¾oz) unsalted butter
50g (2oz) light brown sugar
500g (1lb 2oz) ricotta, drained
100g (3½oz) mascarpone
zest and juice of 2 Amalfi lemons, plus extra zest to serve
125g (4½oz) icing (confectioner's) sugar, sifted

Tip the cantuccini into a food processor and blitz them to a fine crumb. Alternatively, place them in a Ziplock bag and bash them with a rolling pin or saucepan. Set aside.

Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over a low heat, then add the blitzed cantuccini biscuits and the sugar. Cook, stirring, for 1 minute, then take the pan off the heat.

Tip the mixture into a 22cm (8½in) non-stick springform cake tin, pressing the buttery crumbled biscuits over the base to create a biscuit base. Transfer the tin to the fridge while you make the ricotta filling.

Using a hand-held electric whisk or a wooden spoon, beat together the ricotta, mascarpone, lemon zest and juice and icing (confectioner’s) sugar in a large mixing bowl for 4 minutes, until the mixture is creamy and light.

Spoon the ricotta mixture into the springform tin and spread it out into an even layer over the base.

Refrigerate to set for a minimum of 3 hours, but preferably overnight, before releasing the cheesecake from the tin. Transfer it to a serving plate and top with extra lemon zest before slicing

The second cheesecake that I tried was a Lemon Cheesecake recipe from Jamie Oliver's cookbook One. The idea of the book is that you only use one pan to cook the meal, or in this case the cheesecake.

The idea of this one is that you cook this in a frying pan, starting from the biscuit base, through to the cheesecake mixture. To be honest, I am really not sure how this saves anything because you would still be using just one cooking implement if you did in the normal cake tin that I used. You would have gotten a better base in the cake tin as well.

Another reason to not use the frying pan. It really, really hurts when you forget to use the oven mitt when you go to put the frying pan back in the fridge. Trust me on this!

One thing I did like about this recipe was the idea of using a food processor to do the biscuit base and then just doing the cream cheese part in the same food processor without worrying about washing the bowl out. Normally I would use the food processor to do the tin and then the stand mixer to do the cream cheese part. I will definitely do that in future.

The title of the recipe is a bit misleading as I do feel as though the raspberries should at least get a shout at.

Lemon Cheesecake 

100 g unsalted butter
250 g Lotus Biscoff or ginger nut biscuits
4 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
100 g icing sugar , plus extra for dusting
680 g cream cheese
1 lemon

Preheat the oven to 160°C. Melt the butter in a 28cm ovenproof frying pan over a low heat, while you blitz the biscuits until fine in a food processor. Turn the heat off, tip the biscuit crumbs into the pan and mix well, then spread and pat out in an even layer, going slightly up the sides. Bake for 5 minutes, then remove. Crack the eggs into the processor (there’s no need to clean it), with the vanilla and most of the icing sugar and blitz for 2 minutes, until pale. Blitz in the cream cheese and lemon juice, then pour evenly over the biscuit base. Mash half the raspberries and the remaining icing sugar with a fork, swirl through the top, then bake for 15 minutes.

Pull out the pan and scatter over the rest of the raspberries, dust with a little extra icing sugar, then pop back in for another 10 minutes. At this point, switch from the oven to the grill on full whack, until the top is beautifully golden and just starting to catch. Remove and leave to cool, then chill in the fridge for 2 hours before serving. The texture won’t be completely smooth but boy will it be delicious.

Weekly meals

Saturday - Chilli, rice and broccoli
Sunday -  Leftover chilli
Monday - pork chops, mash and broccolie
Tuesday - steak, mushroom and broccoline
Wednesday - takeaway
Thursday - chicken katsu curry, rice, broccoli
Friday -

Weekend Cooking is open to anyone who has any kind of food-related post to share: Book reviews (novel, nonfiction), cookbook reviews, movie reviews, recipes, random thoughts, gadgets, quotations, photographs, restaurant reviews, travel information, or fun food facts. If your post is even vaguely foodie, feel free to grab the button and link up anytime over the weekend. You do not have to post on the weekend. Please link to your specific post, not your blog's home page


  1. I am just going to make a cheesecake for Easter brunch!

  2. Hands donw cheesecake is my all time favorite dessert. Eclairs are a close second but nothing can replace cheesecake.

  3. My sister loves cheesecake brownies so much she asks for them (or makes them herself) instead of birthday cake. I like cheesecake too although it is not usually something I make for myself (maybe that should change!).

    1. If you could scale down to make a smaller size that might work for making it for yourself!

  4. Some of these I must try, like the White Chocolate Cheesecake!

    1. The White Chocolate Cheesecake has been my go to cheesecake for years. My friends all fight about who is going to get to take the leftovers home.