Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Easy Breezy Chilled Lemon Cheesecake

After rounds of bake sale which is mostly baked cheesecakes, we managed to steal time and came up with a chilled cheesecake (no baking/oven involved). As for the bake sales, we are now planning to venture into online bake sales, which is something we have planned months ago. To jump start the venture, we are now happily baking cakes, cheesecakes and tortes for try-outs besides than prep-ing the ready-made baked goods for a cheap photoshoot. May things go well, considering that we're great procrastinators.

As of the chilled cheesecake, we went back to the basics. How about a chilled lemon cheesecake, something simple and flavorful, we reckon? Speaking of the truth, we have always been alienating chilled cheesecakes especially the plain ones, as we find it rather disgusting due to the uninviting aroma of gelatine - think of liquid glue. Things are different when there are more flavorsome and appealing aroma that will overcome the gelatinous smell or best yet, empower the entire chilled cheesecake.

Since our helpers and the kids can be categorized as ardent lemon lovers, why not a chilled cheesecake flavored lemon? Though we would love to have a green tea infused chilled cheesecake at first. At least, the chilled lemon cheesecake will be wiped off clean from the serving plate just in 2 days compared to the green tea, thanks to the natural citrus flavor in lemons. Like how democratic countries worked, the majority wins. Green tea cheesecake will only cost us more leftovers and extra pounds as the intensified ones tasted rather bitter and smelt grassy.

The chilled lemon cheesecake tasted not as jelly-ish and gooey as we have already stereotyped on most chilled cheesecakes. The lemon flavor was just right, identifiable flavor which is not intensified. One of my helper, which is an even straight arrow person, claimed that it was a creamy cheesecake, and ended with a but. But. Here goes the usual but from her, which sometimes prickle us off. And that is what we wanted to hear, because there is always a room for improvement.

Pleased, and at the same time, confused, she mumbles as she was spooning the chilled cheesecake away from her serving bowl. Standing still impatiently as we waited for her to finish half of the serving slice, we stared foolishly at the sliced-up cheesecake. What is wrong with the chilled baby? Minds pondered. It's either the gelatine cum glue-ish aroma, or it might be the coarsely chopped lemon zests, we thought for awhile. We soon stared strangely back at her; one of our helper and asked for unravel reviews that she had planned to give us. "The lemon aroma was there, but I can hardly taste it".

That's it! The lack of lemon juice. Which brings us to a more subtle lemony cheesecake. It was quenchable and creamy, just like how texture of mousses are, with a hint of cream cheese. We doubled the digestive crust for the extra crunch, as to blend in with the mousse-like cheesecake. The topping were made out of lemon juice, water, gelatine, a tiny bit of sugar and yellow coloring - a jellified layer which looked pleasant and tempting on the chilled cheesecake.

Before the jellified layer was set, the arrangement of sliced lemon were aligned decoratively onto the surface of the cheesecake. The sliced lemon were somehow too sour and hard for human consumption. If there's another quickie to be done the next time, we will definitely forgo the lemon slices though the chilled lemon cheesecake looked simply divine with it.

Chilled Lemon Cheesecake

For the cheesecake:
300g digestive biscuit (we used McVities)
150g butter, melted
250g Philadelphia cream cheese, thawed at room temperature
1 egg yolk
1 egg white
80g caster sugar
1-1/2 tablespoon gelatine powder
3 tablespoon water
3 tablespoon lemon juice (we used 2-1/2 tablespoons of lemon juice, and thus the subtle cheesecake)
1 tablespoon lemon zest, finely grated
225g whipping cream (measured at 225g before whipping, whipped until firm peaks, let chilled)

1. Finely crushed biscuits - either with a rolling pin or a blender with sharp blades. Combine finely crushed biscuits with melted butter. Press into the base of a 8 inch round springform cake pan.
2. Using electric mixer, in a bowl, beat cream cheese until creamy and smooth. Scrape the sides of the bowl. Add in egg yolk and sugar. Beat until well combined. Set aside.
3. Mix gelatine with water in a small bowl. Stand the bowl in hot water until gelatine has dissolved (the mixture will look ooey gooey and sticky!)
4. Add the gelatine mixture into the cheese mixture. Mix well. Add in lemon juice and lemon zest. Mix until well combined.
5. Mix in whipped cream with a rubber spatula.
6. Beat egg whites until firm peaks formed. Fold gently into cheese mixture with a rubber spatula until well combined.
7. Pour mixture into prepared pan. Chill for about 2 hours before proceeding to the topping.

For the jelly topping:
1 teaspoon lemon juice
2 teaspoon caster sugar
250g water
2 teaspoon gelatine powder

1. Mix all the ingredients above. Boil on a saucepan over low heat till sugar and gelatine powder dissolves. Remove from heat and let cool until slightly warm.
2. Pour onto cheesecake. Put into fridge and let to set. Happy baking!

Some blur poochie shots (dated months back) to indulged in. There's a huge difference in photo editing, which is pretty bad. Bear with us. ;)

A grown-up and untrimmed Miniature Schnauzer, with pepper coat.

Months-old young Miniature Schnauzer, yawning continuously during a cat nap.

A young Beagle posing macholy.

Beagle Pose.

Last shot of the young Beagle.
Enjoy! ;)