Friday, 17 June 2016

Lemon and Rhubarb Ripple Cheesecake

Rhubarb can be rather devisive but personally I LOVE it. When treated care and respect it can have the most beautiful flavour and just the right balance of sweet and sharp. Here I've rippled a simple lemon cheesecake with rhubarb, sweetened with a little caster sugar and poached in its own juice. If the ripple effect doesn't do anything for you though you can just top normally, just wait for the lemon layer to chill for a couple of hours before moving on to the rhubarb stage. :-)

Prep time: 25 Mins
Baking Chilling time: 3-4 Hours (Minimum)
For the biscuit base
200g Digestive Biscuits
85g Unsalted Butter (Melted)

For the lemon layer
360g Full Fat Cream Cheese
150g Caster Sugar
The finely grated zest of 4 Small Lemons
The juice of 2 Small Lemons
150ml Double Cream
3 Leaves of Gelatin

For the rhubarb layer
350g Rhubarb (The pinker the better!)
Around 100g Caster Sugar
2 Leaves of Gelatin

I use a 23cm disposable foil tin for this, but failing that you can always just use a 23cm springform tin lined with clingfilm. For the biscuit base pulverise the biscuits, then mix through the unsalted butter. Press into the base of your tin and leave to one side whilst you prepare the cheese and rhubarb.

For the lemon layer whisk together the cheese, sugar, zest and juice. Place the double cream in a pan on a low heat, stirring often and at the same time soak the 3 leaves of gelatine in cold water. When the cream is just starting to steam remove from the heat. Remove the gelatine from the water, squeezing out any water and stir through the hot cream until dissolved. Pour into the cheese mixture and whisk until combined. Pour over your biscuit base.

For the rhubarb layer, chop the rhubarb into knuckle sized piece and add to a pan along with the caster sugar. Place on a medium heat, stirring occasionally and at the same time soak the 2 leaves of gelatine in cold water. After a while the rhubarb will release its juice and start to bubble. Keep gently moving the rhubarb around, taking care not to break it, then when the rhubarb is entirely soft remove from the heat. A fair amount of sweet syrupy juice should have been released at this point. Remove the gelatine from the water, squeezing out any water and stir through the rhubarb. Spoon over the lemon layer and muss up a little with the handle of the spoon. Place in the fridge to chill for at least 3-4 hours until set firm and you are ready to serve. Yummmmmmmmmmm!

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