THIS is a delicious and simple baked cheesecake, which although tastes heavier than a mousse like or set cheesecake, you can really taste the cream cheese and has a lovely creamy yet crumbly texture. I like to serve this with some stewed fresh fruit, such as rhubarb.
Simply place the fruit in a saucepan with caster sugar and cook on a low to medium heat until the fruit has softened and the sugar has turned into a thick syrup with the fruit. This usually takes about 10 minutes depending on the fruit. This also works really well with mixed berries and you can use frozen at this time of year if you prefer.
200g shortbread biscuits
25g butter, melted
600g cream cheese
75g golden caster sugar
4 large free-range eggs
Zest of 1 lemon
3 tsp. vanilla extract
100ml crème fraiche
250g stewed rhubarb
Line the base of a 22cm round, loose-bottomed tin with baking parchment. Brush some of the melted butter around the sides of the tin.
Place the biscuits in a food processor and pulse to crumbs. Tip into a bowl, add the remaining melted butter then mix well. Press the biscuits into the base of the cake tin and put in the fridge to chill.
Beat together the cream cheese and sugar with an electric hand whisk until smooth. Carefully add the eggs, one at a time with the lemon zest and vanilla extract until well mixed. Pour the mixture onto the chilled biscuit base and bake in the middle of the oven for 50 minutes until just set.
Turn off the oven and leave it inside with the heat off for a further 10 minutes, then remove from the oven and allow to cool in the tin completely.
When ready to serve, place the rhubarb on top of the cheesecake followed by the crème fraiche. Serve with extra vanilla ice cream.