This creamy cheesecake is certainly a thing of beauty. But beauty born admittedly of absolute disaster… Every cloud? When one of our university friends was over for dinner a couple of weeks ago I was lifting an apple crumble out of the oven (domestic goddess) and somehow the combination of hot ceramics and oven gloves meant I managed to drop the whole thing onto the inside of the oven door. The inside glass panel shattered instantly into a million tiny pieces (safety glass — great) and we three were left for a moment as if frozen: just staring at what had just happened. And swearing.
Perhaps the most stressful part about renting, especially renting when you’re just starting out and don’t have an abundance of extra money lying around, is that you don’t own most of the stuff that you could potentially break during your everyday apple-crumble-creation activities. And so smashing the oven was followed by hours of sweeping up broken glass, and trying to get the shards out of the door mechanism so that it would actually shut, and then more hours of agonising over how much a new oven door was going to cost… I write this now from the safe vantage point of having had the oven door inside panel replaced at not too extravagant a cost last week, so… phew.
But to cut to the chase, here is what you need to know:
1) I had no oven for a few weeks
2) I cannot survive without pudding
So I made this cheesecake. It was nice. It is not necessary to smash your oven door in order to enjoy it in all of its glory.
For the base
- 200g digestive biscuits
- 100g butter
For the filling
- 450g cream cheese, room temperature
- 1 tin Coronation caramel (you could use Dulche de leche or something similar )
- 240ml double cream
- 2 tablespoons icing sugar
To go on top
- 1 tin of peaches
- 15g butter
- 3-4 tablespoons brown sugar, or more
– To make the base, simply melt the butter in a large bowl (I just melt mine in the microwave – you can melt yours however you like. How liberal of me) and then add the crushed digestives (I don’t have a food processor so I put my biscuits in a freezer bag and hit them with a rolling pin until they were powder)
– Mix until the butter is evenly distributed, and then grease your tin (I used a spring-form circular number) and press the mixture down so that it forms an even base. I used the flat bottom of a glass to get the base nice and flat.
– Put into the fridge to chill and harden.
– In a large bowl (or a mixer if you have one) beat the cream cheese until fluffy. Add the can of caramel and beat until smooth and all combined.
– In a separate medium bowl, beat cream and powdered sugar on high until soft peaks form – about 3 mins with a mixer, or about 10 mins + very sore arms if you’re just using a whisk like I was…
– With a rubber spatula, stir about one-third of the whipped cream/icing sugar mix into the cream cheese mixture, then fold in the rest. Make sure it’s all combined, but avoid over-mixing.
– Tip onto the base and smooth the top with a spatula.
– Cover tightly and refrigerate until firm, 3 hours (or up to 2 days).
– For the decorative caramelised peaches, first line a baking tray with grease proof paper.
– Empty your tin of peaches into a sieve, and rinse under cold water, then pat dry with kitchen towel to get rid of as much moisture as possible.
– Heat the butter in a frying pan, and when it’s hot lay the peaches in carefully, so they’re not touching each other. Sprinkle enough brown sugar over the top to cover each piece. Cook for about 2 mins, then flip them over. Coat the new side with more brown sugar, and then flip again.
– One the peaches are sticky and somewhat caramelised, lay them out on the grease proof paper. Let them cool completely.
– Arrange on the top of your cheesecake however you like before serving.
Listening to: Barton Hollow by The Civil Wars, Thinking Out Loud by Ed Sheeran, Places to Go by Leftover Cuties, Completely by Caro Emerald.
Recipe adapted from this one from The Food Charlatan: I changed the base (her crust required an oven…) and used tinned peaches rather than fresh because it’s what I had, as well as making a few other tweaks.
All other content is © Rebecca Daley and ohtogoawandering, 2015.