Traditional baked cheesecake, thick & full with flavour is one of my sister’s favourite desserts. Usually, I can take it or leave it (with a slice of chocolate cake instead), but baked ricotta cheesecake, I will always take at least one slice of. Fresh & light, it is much more suited to a bright March spring day. I’ve adapted a recipe from the wonderful Rachel Allen, incorporating ricotta & mascarpone sitting on top of blueberries which burst open while baking to add a deep hue of colour & a welcome pop of flavour. Finished off with a buttery biscuit base, this is a cheesecake that somehow manages to be rich, creamy & light all at once. In other words, one worth having a second slice of.
For the base:
- 160g biscuits (digestives work well)
- 55g butter
- 150g blueberries
For the cheesecake:
- 280g cream cheese
- 250g ricotta
- 70g mascarpone
- 120g caster sugar
- 1tsp vanilla extract
- 4 medium eggs
- 60ml cream
Line the bottom & sides of a 20cm springform cake tin. Preheat your oven to 140ºC. (This low heat will slowly bake your cheesecake to perfection & you won’t have to trouble yourself with a water bath.)
- First make the base. Melt the butter over a low heat. While cooling, pop your biscuits into a food processor for about 1 1/2 minutes until you have a fine sandy mixture.
- Mix the melted butter & biscuits with a metal spoon. Tip into your cake tin & using the back of the spoon or your hands, press into the base of the tin until smooth & level. Dot your blueberries on top & place into your refrigerator while making up the cheesecake mixture.
- Place the cream cheese, ricotta, mascarpone, sugar & vanilla extract in your mixing bowl. Using an electric mixer, beat together for about 3 minutes until smooth & creamy.
- Beat in the eggs one at a time, scraping down any mixture from the sides of the bowl.
- Beat in the cream until fully incorporated. Give a quick mix through with a spatula at the end, as some of the cheese may settle to the bottom.
- Using a spatula, pour this mixture over your blueberry biscuit base & bake in your oven for about 90 minutes to 1 1/2 hours. What you are looking for is a deep golden yellow on top, a gentle wobble when you shake your cake tin & a skewer should come out with the mixture clinging to it a little.
- Leave to cool for about tin minutes before removing the springform sides. Leave to cool for another 5-10 minutes before removing the parchment paper from the sides of the cake. Once completely cool, chill in the refrigerator for a further 4 hours.
For best results, take out of the fridge about 15-20 minutes before slicing. This cheesecake holds very well, once kept refrigerated, for 4 days.