Helloooo my lovely readers! How are you all doing?
I don’t know about you but nothing quite puts a smile on my face like digging into a luscious, sweet, homemade dessert. I mean, you get the first awesome part that you made it yourself, and the second part is obviously getting to devour it. I’ve been on a bit of a baking kick at the moment, partially because I’m on holiday and I have time to spend in the kitchen, and partially because I’m a bit sad and eating lots of dessert (albeit an unhealthy strategy) is making me feel a bit better.
Before anyone asks, my sadness is because unfortunately an amazing summer job opportunity I had lined up has been cancelled due to covid, so I’m rather bleak about that and as such, am trying to make myself feel better by drowning my sorrows in complex carbs and sugar. Good plan right?
So anyway, this week I had a craving for cheesecake, after the strawberry cheesecake I made turned out so well. I also figured it would be a great chance to knock something off my summer bucket list – make something with strawberries/blueberries. So, without further ado, I present to you … BLUEBERRY CHEESECAKE!!
For the crust:
- Two sleeves of tennis biscuits
- 75g toasted pecan nuts
- 130g melted salted butter
- 100g light brown sugar
For the reduction:
- 500g blueberries
- 50g castor sugar
- 60ml lemon juice (¼ cup)
- 1 ½ tbsp cornstarch (mix with cold water before adding)
For the filling:
- 4 packages (250g each) of Philadelphia cream cheese at room temperature
- 60ml sweetened condensed milk (¼ cup)
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tbsp vanilla extract
- 65g castor sugar
- 25g icing sugar
- First let’s start by making the crust. Put the tennis biscuits and toasted nuts (optional – the recipe still tastes delicious without the nuts if you’d prefer not to add them) in a food processor and pulse until they make a fine crumb.
- Add the sugar and pulse again until it’s mixed well
- Pour the melted butter into the crumbs and use a spatula to mix it together
- Transfer the mixture into a spring-form pan or pie dish so it is evenly distributed. I personally like to just make a crust for the bottom of the dish, but this recipe does allow for a crust that goes all the way up the sides too (and sometimes a few small ramekins depending on the size of your pan/dish)
- Press the crumbs into a flat layer using a glass to compact it as much as possible, and then place it in the freezer to chill until the filling is ready.
- Now it’s time for the blueberry reduction: put the blueberries, sugar, lemon juice and cornstarch (remember to mix it with cold water first before adding it to the blueberries) into a blender or food processor and pulse until liquefied.
- Pour the mixture into a pot on the stove and place it on a medium heat, stirring occasionally until it starts to boil. Once the mixture starts bubbling, reduce the temperature to low and let it simmer until it’s reduced by about half. The colour of the mixture will get progressively darker as it simmers so don’t stress about that.
- Once the mixture has reduced, strain it into a bowl using a sieve and chill in the fridge
- Lastly, it’s time to make the filling: put the cream cheese into a kitchen stand mixer and mix at a medium speed to cream it (the cream cheese has to be at room temperature otherwise it won’t whip up nicely and your filling can end up quite dense)
- Add the sugar and keep mixing on a medium speed until it’s light and creamy. Use a spatula to scrape down the bowl and mix until the sugar is well blended in
- Pour the sweetened condensed milk, vanilla and lemon juice into the bowl and mix it in well. Scrape the bowl down again and mix with the spatula until it’s completely smooth
- Take the chilled reduction mix out of the fridge and add about a cup of it into the filling, then mix gently to combine. You can add a bit more to taste if you want. As you can see, I’ve split my filling mixture so I could do varying levels of colour/amount of blueberry reduction but you don’t have to do that if you don’t want to
- Place the remaining reduction in the fridge – don’t go eating it on your toast because we’ll be using it later on top of the cheesecake
- Take the crust out of the freezer, and pour in the filling and use a spatula to smooth over the top. If you’re splitting the filling to do different layers, chill the bottom layer for 10 minutes in the freezer, then add the second one and refrigerate but if not, then you can just plop it all in and place your cheesecake in the fridge
- The cheesecake will set better the longer it is in the fridge, so leaving it in overnight will give you a nice, firm cheesecake but it only needs to be in the fridge for about 5 and a half hours to set nicely if you’re in more of a rush
- Once the cheesecake has finished chilling, spread the remaining reduction over the top
- If you’re using a spring-form pan, before you add the reduction, run a knife around the edges. Spread the reduction out, then remove the sides of the pan. This is the nerve-wrecking part where you truly know if the cheesecake has set because if it has, you’ll feel super satisfied and successful but if it hasn’t it will just spurt all over your counter … nothing like a bit of tension to increase the blood pressure in the kitchen hey?
- Garnish the cake with blueberries, and if you’re feeling fancy some whipped cream and then slice and enjoy!!
And there you have it!! I had such fun figuring out this blueberry cheesecake and thankfully, it was well worth the effort because it was delicious!! Do you have a favourite cheesecake flavour? If so, what is it? Also, if you try out this recipe, please let me know how it turns out! Let’s chat in the comments section. Otherwise, that’s all I have for you guys today – I’ll see you on Saturday!
Lots of Love
Blondey on a Mission xxx