A cheesy favourite

Of the desserts out there – pies, pastries, ice cream/gelato, pudding and a whole slew of other yummy treats - there is a favourite in my house: the cheesecake. Thanks to my husband, I too now love this delicious dessert. So I had to find a recipe that wasn't too indulgent. Instead of heavy, cream-laden, need-a-forklift-to-eat-it cheesecake, I like baking cakes that are light and smooth and melt in your mouth. I use a simple biscuit and almond meal base rather than a rich pastry and I don’t use cream or artificial thickeners (I only want unadulterated cheesiness in my cheesecake).
This cheesecake is a fruity one. The strong yet subtle flavours of lime and blood orange produce an interesting taste. I also use some blueberries - just a few for colour and added sweetness. I find that the bold bright colour of blood oranges and the tangy flavour of the limes match well with the cold creaminess of the cheesecake. If you’d rather use the fruit for decoration instead of baking it into the cake, just leave it out of the recipe and it will still work just fine. Often I bake a plain cheesecake and then add lemon juice and zest for a little freshness.

blood orange and lime cheesecake
(this recipe makes about 8-10 smallish pieces)

12 biscuits (I use wholemeal but you could use granita (Australia) or graham crackers (Canadian)
1/3 cup almond meal
1 tbsp melted butter
125g cream cheese
1 lime juice and zest
1 blood orange zest and 1 tbsp juice
225g ricotta cheese
1 organic egg
1/8 tsp sea salt
2 tbsp yoghurt
2 tbsp honey
¼ blueberries

Set oven to 180 degrees Celsius.

To make the base: in a food processor crumble biscuits until the texture is like sand (or just bash a bag with biscuits with a rolling pin). Add almond meal, melted butter and mix, press into a small square or rectangle pan – making sure the base is at least 1/8 inch thick. To set the base, bake for 10 mins (watch it so it doesn’t brown too much). Take out and let cool.

For the filling: mix/blend the cheese with salt, zest, juice, honey, yoghurt and egg. Mix well but don’t overbeat. Add in blueberries.

Pour mix onto cookie base – it may seem watery but don’t worry it will thicken once baked and cooled. Place into oven and bake for 30-35 minutes. If it’s browning on the top, cover with foil and resume baking. Take out and let cool. Refrigerate before serving and enjoy!