Sunday, 2 January 2011

Giada's Savoury Cheesecake

I am a party animal. I am able to party til 7pm, get home, and be in my jammies by 8:30. That's just the way I roll. But I am likely to bring something to said party. Something fun.

For this particular party, I decided to try Giada's Savoury Cheesecake - she made hers with roasted red peppers but I didn't have any on hand so I subbed in sundried tomatoes. They were good, but I think the red peppers would have been even better.

Instead of the apricot jam that she tops hers with, I used my own homemade red wine/lemon thyme jelly. And served it with homemade baguette - yum!

This is a fun and delicious alternative for your cheese platter, just serve it with some knives for spreading and some thinly sliced baguette or ciabatta.

Red Pepper Cheesecake
Giada De Laurentiis,
Show: Everyday Italian  Episode: Sweet and Savory
for IHCC Celebrate!

Yield: 4 to 6 servings


    * 1/2 cup ricotta cheese (4 ounces)
    * 1/2 cup cream cheese (4 ounces)
    * 1/4 cup goat cheese (2 ounces) (yogurt cheese)
    * 1 tablespoon sugar
    * 1 egg
    * Pinch kosher salt
    * 1/2 cup thin strips roasted red bell peppers *I used sundried tomatoes
    * 4 pitas
    * 2 tablespoons olive oil
    * Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
    * 1/4 cup apricot jam *I used wine jelly    * 1 to 2 teaspoons hot water
    * Special equipment: 1 (4 1/2-inch diameter) springform (cheesecake) pan


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Wrap the outside of the cheesecake pan with 2 layers of heavy-duty foil. Place the ricotta, cream cheese, and goat cheese in a food processor. Pulse to mix. Add the sugar, egg, and salt and pulse a few times until well mixed. Stir in the red pepper strips.

Pour the cheese mixture into the cheesecake pan. Place the cheesecake pan in a roasting pan. Pour enough hot water in the roasting pan to come halfway up the sides of the cheesecake pan. Bake until the cheesecake is golden at the edges and the center of the cake moves slightly when the pan is gently shaken, about 45 minutes (the cake will become firm when it is cold.)

Transfer the cake to a wire rack to cool for 1 hour. Refrigerate until the cheesecake is cold, at least 3 hours and up to 2 days.

To make the pita chips, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Cut the pitas into 8 triangles each (like a pie). Drizzle the pita with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake until crisp and golden, about 12 to 15 minutes.

To serve, combine the jam and the water in a small bowl and stir until the jam is liquefied. Remove the cheesecake from the springform pan. Place on a serving plate. Drizzle the jam mixture over the top of the cheesecake. Serve with the pita chips alongside. *I used baguette.