I have a really sweet tooth, but strangely I don’t really crave chocolate or sweets very much. Cake and cheesecake are a different matter though! I decided to make this because I had some leftover ricotta cheese from making spicy chorizo and ricotta stuffed ravioli last weekend, and I wanted to make something new and sweet.
This recipe originally comes from The Food Network, and is a recipe by Giada de Laurentiis. I’ve changed the recipe slightly by using stem ginger cookies for the base, and the combination of the honey and ginger works really well. The original recipe suggests using a 23cm springform tin, but we don’t have one so I just used a deep 22cm cake tin and (despite my worries) it worked fine. This cheesecake would be best if you prepared it the day before as it does take a long time to set in the fridge after cooking – as you’ll see, we weren’t quite so prepared for that (or patient enough, depending on how you look at it!). It’s so scrummy though, so well worth the wait.
250g shop-bought biscotti (I used a 250g packet of stem ginger cookies)
6 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
350g fresh whole milk ricotta, drained
500g cream cheese, room temperature
60ml orange blossom or clover honey
1 tbsp orange zest
4 large eggs
1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/ gas mark 4.
2. Wrap the outside of a 23-cm springform tin with 7-cm high sides with 2 layers of heavy-duty foil. Finely grind the biscotti in a food processor. Add the melted butter and process until the crumbs are moistened. Press the crumb mixture over the bottom (not the sides) of the prepared pan. Bake until the crust is golden, about 15 minutes. Cool the crust completely.
3. Blend the ricotta in a clean food processor until smooth. Add the cream cheese and sugar and Blend well, stopping the machine occasionally and scraping down the sides of the work bowl. Blend in the honey and orange zest. Add the eggs and pulse just until blended.
4. Pour the cheese mixture over the crust in the pan. Place the springform pan in a large roasting pan. Pour enough hot water into the roasting pan to come halfway up the sides of the springform pan. Bake until the cheesecake is golden and the center of the cake moves slightly when the pan is gently shaken, about 1 hour and 5 minutes (the cake will become firm when it is cold).
5. Transfer the cake to a rack and cool for one hour. Refrigerate until the cheesecake is cold, at least 8 hours and up to 2 days. Cut the cake into wedges and serve.
I really like the fact that you end up with a really good layer of biscuit with this cheesecake!
As I said earlier though, it would be better to prepare this the day before you need it. We cut ours when it wasn’t quite set enough, so it ended up looking a bit like a brie! Still tastes good though 🙂 Enjoy!