White chocolate cheesecake

White and wonderful, this dreamy chocolate cheesecake from Ben O'Donaghue is so heavenly - it must be on the menu in Paradise!
White chocolate cheesecake
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4-6
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Effort: medium

Ingredients

main

  • 55 g biscuits, , crumbedmade from Anzac, butternut or good chocolate biscuits
  • 1 vanilla pod, split in half lengthways
  • 250 g white chocolate, chopped
  • 250 g crème fraîche
  • 500 g cream cheese
  • 4 large free-range eggs

For the poached cherries and berries:

  • zest of ½ oranges, finely grated
  • 200 ml red wine, (Shiraz or Cabernet Sauvignon)
  • ½ cinnamon sticks
  • 1 clove
  • 1 tsp caster sugar, plus extra, if needed
  • 200 g frozen black sour cherries, or mixed berries, defrosted

Method

1. Set the oven to 150°C/gas 2. Grease a 20cm spring form tin.

2. Put in the biscuit crumbs and roll the tin around to coat the sides. Leave the excess on the base in an even layer.

3. Scrape the seeds from the vanilla pod and put them into a heatproof bowl with the white chocolate. Heat the bowl over a pan of simmering water until the chocolate is completely melted; don't let the water touch the bowl.

4. Fold in the crème fraîche and stir until smooth.

5. Beat the cream cheese until soft and smooth. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.

6. Fold in the chocolate mixture and mix thoroughly. Pour into the prepared tin. Bang the tin down on a work surface to remove any air bubbles.

7. Transfer the tin to a baking dish half filled with warm water. Bake for 50-60 minutes, until firm and golden brown.

8. Meanwhile poach the cherries by placing the zest, wine, cinnamon, clove and sugar in a saucepan, and bring to a simmer. Add the cherries, bring to the boil, and taste for sweetness. If necessary, add a little more sugar to neutralise the tannin of the wine, whilst still retaining some zing. Simmer for 5 minutes, and then cool.

9. Once the cheesecake is cold, turn it out, slice into wedges and pour the poached cherries over the top.

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