I’m doing a project of baking 10 different desserts which could be sold in a supermarket. And the first, and the easiest of them (and that says something about the other 10) was a blueberry cheesecake. The recipe was incredibly simple and I’ve got some of the key stages along the way in pictures so you can see what I mean.
175g digestive biscuits
175g blueberries, fresh or frozen
450g cream cheese
150g caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
Icing sugar, to dust
Extra butter for greasing
- Start by taking a 9-inch, 23cm springform tin and grease the whole tin using some butter (especially the base).
- Create a cartouche. Take a large square of greaseproof paper and fold into quarters thus creating a smaller square. Fold over one corner of the square to the other making a triangle. Keep folding the long side over to the short side until you cannot fold it any more (i.e. the long side folds up to meet with the shorter side). Line the point where they all meet up with the approximate centre of the tin. Take a pair of scissors and cut off the excess. Unfold the greaseproof paper and it should be a circle. Place this into the bottom of the tin. (Sometimes I do it such that a little bit comes up the sides so it is easier to lift the cheesecake out. It might not get such smooth sides, but it is even worse not being able to serve your cheesecake)
- At this stage, I preheat the oven to 180 degrees / Gas Mark 4.
- Now it is time to start with the base. Melt the butter in a pan.
- Take the digestive biscuits and place into a plastic sandwich bag and bash with a rolling pin until fine crumbs. Alternatively, blitz into fine crumbs using a food processor. Add the crumbs into the pan and stir until just combined.
- Pour into the lined tin and using a wooden spoon, press down the base so it is even. Pour the blueberries over the biscuit base and chill in the fridge until you have made the filling.
- For the filling, take the cream cheese, caster sugar, eggs and vanilla and beat together using an electric whisk until it is fully combined. Now take the base from the fridge and pour over the top of the blueberries. Some of them will float up to the top.
- Put onto a baking tray if it starts to leak and bake in the oven for 35 – 45 minutes. I check at 15 minutes to see if the cheesecake has browned too much (see problems and tips below). I check at 35 minutes to see if the cheesecake is done, by shaking the tin slightly and there should be a slight wobble in the centre.
- When done, allow to cool on a cooling rack for 15 minutes. The cheesecake must be at room temperature. If you can, place the cheesecake into the fridge for 2 hours so the inside of the cheesecake, which will still be quite liquid, can set so it cuts more easily.
- Release the tin and using the slightly raised paper, lift the cheesecake off. If you want to flip it, dust the top with icing sugar. Take a clean plate and flip the tin. Fortunately it should be cool. Lift the base and take your cake stand or serving dish and flip the plate over.
- Take a knife and cut out a slice. Top with some fresh berries and some mint leaves. Dust with some more icing sugar
Some tips for you:
- If you are using frozen blueberries, allow them to defrost in the fridge overnight otherwise they will leak some juice into the cream cheese mix. This will inevitably happen but we can reduce the amount of juice.
- Don’t put the cheesecake up too high in the oven. The top of the cheesecake will brown too quickly. The cheesecake should be golden
- Dip your knife into warm water so it slices more easily.
- Ensure that the cream cheese is room temperature. It will blend in more smoothly.
Remember to share your views and tips in the comments below: Andrew