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Jul 01

Raspberry, Kiwi & Elderflower Cheesecake for two

Mini cake tin, I salute you. I ate half a cheescake for dessert and didn’t even have to open my jeans button and collapse on the sofa afterwards.

Raspberry Kiwi & Elderflower Cheescake Photo

This dessert recipe was created when Mr Hungry Gannet requested raspberry cheesecake for his birthday dinner. He had clearly decided to take advantage of the celebratory amnesty on saturated fat – potato dauphinoise was already making an appearance on the menu. So, as a compromise, I decided to scale down the cheesecake by using less cheese, including more fruit and, well, making it tiny. To compensate for the diminutive size I wanted to create something extra special so made a multi-layered, soft fruit jelly for the topping. As luck would have it, we had been collecting some elderflower blossoms to make elderflower champagne and the perfectly formed miniscule flowerheads added a delicate scent and beautiful proportioned decoration to the top. If you cannot find any elderflowers, or the season has passed, you could substitute rose or nasturtion petals or simply decorate with some fruit slices.

If there is any downside to this cheesecake recipe, it is the preparation time. Creating four delectable layers takes time and patience and a lot of washing up. Hopefully you can find someone willing to do the latter for you.

Recipe – raspberry, kiwi and elderflower cheesecake

You will need a mini springform cake tin for this recipe (11.5cm diameter, at least 4cm deep).

CHEESCAKE BASE

  • 3 digestive biscuits (50g)
  • 20g unsalted butter

LAYER 1

  • 150g cream cheese
  • 25g sour cream
  • 25g golden caster sugar
  • ¼ tsp vanilla extract
  • 3tbsp beaten egg (free range)

LAYER 2

  • 2 kiwis, chopped
  • 65g golden caster sugar
  • ½ tbsp water
  • leaf of gelatine (you will only require two-thirds)

LAYER 3

  • 150g raspberries, plus a few extra for decoration
  • 1 tbsp golden caster sugar
  • leaf of gelatine (you will only require two-thirds)

DECORATION

  • Fresh elderflower blossoms

Grease your tin and line the base and sides with baking parchment.

Preheat your oven to 160°C.

Melt the butter over a gentle heat. Remove to cool slightly.

Crush the digestive biscuits into fine crumbs (the easiest method is to put the biscuits into a bag and just break up with a rolling pin).

Add the melted butter to the biscuit crumbs and mix well. Tip this mixture into the prepared tin and press down firmly with your fingers or the back of a metal spoon.

Put in the fridge to chill while you make the cheesecake topping.

Mix together all the ingredients from Layer 1 until you have smooth, creamy consistency. Pour over the biscuit base.

Place the cheesecake on a metal baking tray. If you are confident your cake tin is completely sealed and waterproof you can create a bain marie by using a deeper tray and filling it with water. If you are in doubt, just place it in the oven as normal.

Bake at 160°C for 20 – 25 minutes or until the filling is set but the centre is still a little wobbly. Keep a close eye on it towards the  end of the baking time as it will split of overcooked.

When ready, remove from the oven and set on a wire rack to cool.

Put the chopped kiwis, sugar and water in a small saucepan. Put the lid on the pan and place on a gentle heat, stirring occasionally until the kiwi pieces start to break up. This should only take a few minutes – if necessary break the kiwis up with the spoon to make a rough purée. You should end up with a thin, jam-like mixture.

Strain the liquid through a fine sieve into a jug, pressing the mixture with the back of a spoon. This shoud yield about 100ml of liquid. Discard the seeds and pulp and leave the mixture to cool.

Meanwhile, rinse the sieve, and press the raspberries through a sieve to extract all the juices. You should end up with another 100ml of liquid. Stir in the sugar and set aside.

When the cheesecake base is cool, you can begin to prepare the fruit topping.

If your cheesecake has significantly come away from the sides of the tin, you may want to remove the springform section, wrap some greaseproof paper around the circumference of the cheescake, then return it to the tin. This should prevent the fruit topping being lost down the sides of the cake.

For each topping the method is the same. Choose the fruit layer you would like on top and start with the other one!

Take a leaf of gelatine and cut off two-thirds (save the rest for another use or discard).

Use scissors to cut the leaf into small pieces, and put into a bowl of cold water. Leave to soak for 10 – 15 minutes. Drain, discard the water, and add the pieces of gelatine to about 3tbsp of the fruit purée. Place over another small bowl of hot (not boiling) water and stir until the pieces of gelatine have completely dissolved. Add this to the rest of the puree, stir well and pour on top of the cheescake.

Place the tin in the fridge to set. When the topping is set on top you can start with the next fruit layer. If you are in a rush you can speed up the process by putting the cheesecake in the freezer for a short time.

Before pouring the second layer onto the cheesecake, stir through tiny segments of raspberry for extra decoration. Once you have poured over the second fruit layer, sprinkle tiny elderflower blossoms onto the surface and return to the fridge to set.

If you would like to make another mini cake you can also try the Tiny Raspberry & Dark Chocolate Cake recipe.

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