Cheesecake with strawberry coulis

Cheesecake should be simply plated

Cheesecake should be simply plated

A lot of people enjoy cheesecake but I’m always surprised at the number of people who always ask me “does cheesecake really have cheese?”. Yes it does. Its also one of the most popular desserts you’ll find in most restaurants as you don’t deal with staleness and it can be kept for longer than you’d keep a baked cake.

You get two kind of cheesecakes, a baked one (which I will post after this) and this one here, a fridge cheesecake.

Although it may sound easier with the name “fridge” in its title, a fridge cheesecake can go horribly wrong. If you add too much gelatine it will become rubbery and if your gelatine is too little you’ll end up with a mush. If you follow the recipe exactly you shouldn’t have anything to worry about. I highly recommend you find leaf gelatine (the gelatine that comes in sheets) rather than the powdered kind but if you can’t find it the powdered one will do.

A coulis is basically a syrup made from fruit (usually), it makes your cake look awesome when plated and can also be added to other desserts like ice-cream so make as much as you like and store it in the fridge. If it goes hard, warm it up on the stove again to get it to the right consistency before use.

Fridge Cheesecake:
Ingredients –
250g Cream Cheese
6 Gelatine leaves (or 12g powdered gelatine)
1 litre Cream
Juice of 720g Lemons
3 Egg yolks
168g Sugar
Packet of Tennis biscuits
250g melted butter

– Firstly make the biscuit base for the cake by crumbling the biscuits in a bowl with the bottom of a cup or by placing them in a food processor and blending until fine (beach sand like).
– Melt the butter in the microwave (or on the stove) and pour enough into the biscuit crumbs to make a “mud” like consistency.
– With a spoon, press the biscuit/butter mix into the bottom of the cake tin. Make sure its perfectly even. Smooth down with a spatula
– Whisk the cheese, egg yolks, sugar and lemon juice together until combined
– Place the mixture in a bowl over a simmering pot of water (not boiling)
– In a separate bowl put the gelatine leaves in a star formation and pour enough cold water to cover them. (This is called “hydrating” the gelatine) Once the gelatine has softened to a “jelly fish” like stage remove (do not forget this, over hydrated gelatine is heard to work with) and pour out the water.
– Put the gelatine back into the bowl and melt it over the simmering water.
– Once melted pour the WARM cheese and egg mixture into the gelatine and mix thoroughly (if the cheese is cold it will cause the gelatine to make lumps)
– Whip the cream until stiff and fold into the cheese and gelatine mixture.
– Pour onto the biscuit crust you got ready earlier.
– Set in the fridge for at least 4 hours

NOTE: For powder gelatine use 12g of gelatine and pour it onto 60ml of water in a bowl. Wait for the gelatine to “bloom” (this is when the gelatine begins to go soft.) Place the bowl over simmering water to melt the gelatine. Follow recipe as above.

Strawberry Coulis:
500g Strawberries
30ml Lemon juice
30ml Orange juice
100g Sugar

– Wash and hull the strawberries (remove the green tops)
– Put all the ingredients in a pot
– Bring the pot to a boil just until the sugar has melted. Remove from the heat
– Blend the syrup and strain through a sieve (unless you do not mind the strawberry seeds)
– Cool completely. If the syrup runs when you lift some with a spoon. Return to the heat to reduce further

Chef Lesego (@LesDaChef)

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