My sister Terese is our Dessert Queen and this is one more of her creations. A special celebration dessert, this cheesecake will more than please the gluten free-er and gluten eater alike. The base is a rice bubble (gluten free of course) and white chocolate mix which Terese also used to adorn the top. Use you favourite cheesecake filling recipe and VOILA! Here is Terese’s version.
Raspberry and White Chocolate Coconut Crunch Cheesecake
Prep: 35 mins + chilling
Cook: 5 mins
Serves: 12 – 16
- 300 g Cadbury White Chocolate Melts
- 60 g butter
- 2 cups puffed rice cereal
- ¾ cup coconut
- 750 g Philadelphia Original Block Cream Cheese, softened
- 1 cup caster sugar
- 2 tsp vanilla essence
- 1 tabs gelatine, dissolved in ¼ cup boiling water
- 1 ½ cups cream, whipped until stiff
- 3 x 125 g punnets raspberries
- Place chocolate and butter in a bowl and place over a saucepan of gently simmering water, stirring until smooth. Combine puffed rice cereal and coconut in a bowl, then add the melted chocolate and butter and mix well.
- Line the base of a 24 cm springform pan. Evenly press half the mixture into the base and chill. Reserve remaining mixture at room temperature.
- Beat the cream cheese, sugar and vanilla essence with an electric mixer until smooth. Stir through the dissolved gelatine, then fold in the whipped cream.
- Scatter 1 punnet of raspberries over the base, then pour over half the cream cheese mixture. Top with another punnet of raspberries, then pour over the remaining cream cheese mixture. Lightly crumble over the reserved chocolate mixture, top with the remaining raspberries and chill for 3 – 4 hours or until set.
I just can’t get my sons to eat any form of baking with the word cheesecake in the title or the words cream cheese in the ingredient list. In their opinion, there is a problem with putting a savoury albeit a cheese into a sweet dish. So I look for occasions to make cheesecake recipes such as a recent morning tea I attended.
Here are two cheesecake brownie recipes worth mentioning: Decadent Cheesecake Brownies : I keep on going back to the gluten free scallywag for recipe inspirations and should Jasmine publish a Volume 4 Magazine/Recipe Book, I will be quick to place my order. Love her Chorizo Macaroni N Cheese, Raspberry Carob Nib Teacake and her Raspberry Melting Moments.
I find cooking and baking therapeutic.
Okay, not the everyday cooking when you have family questioning what’s on offer for dinner, or why haven’t you cooked… or you know I don’t like ….. And not the cooking that comes after a long day when you really don’t have inspiration and you have few ingredients in the fridge.
I mean the cooking and baking that you do because you want to, not because you have to.
Some people find their special time to go to the gym or have their nails done.
Me, one of my indulgences is to puddle along in the kitchen cooking and baking a new recipe even if I know my family won’t really appreciate it or maybe not even eat it. Luckily the fellows at work are happy to taste test for me.
I am only a home cook but my message is that even the home cook, the everyday mum can give those recipes that look a little difficult a try and perhaps you too will find that you can make happiness in the kitchen.
1. Raspberry Chocolate Macarons
This is a packet mix available in the supermarket.
This is a Donna Hay recipe and I am sure she has had lots of practice with souffles and her professional food stylists are much more competent than me.
But even if the berries spill out and over and down the sides of the dish, there is still a sense of accomplishment in making something that rises and looks a little bit pretty.
3. Chocolate Strawberry Cheesecake
This cheesecake was on the front of the taste.com Gluten Free Cookbook. Sometimes I just want to make a recipe to see if it is really as easy as the cookbook makes out it is. This was one of those recipes…
This is a recipe from Deliciously Nell. I have to own up and say that I found this wonderfully addictive.
As a gluten free cook, we are often exhausted by the extra efforts we have to go to to make gluten free food : pancakes, bread, muffins, wraps, slices, biscuits. We get a little tired looking for and thinking about new recipes to tempt our gluten free family members.
But remember to set aside a few challenging or exciting gluten free recipes for those days when you can make room for some “me” time.
And enjoy making happiness in the kitchen.
NB Yes, all the above recipes are gluten free.
There are many expressions of love, friendship and kindness: a gift on birthdays, a catch up chat and coffee, a quick text to touch base, a hug…
As a mother with an Italian and Catalan heritage, it is firmly embedded in my psyche that cooking is integral to family life. Food doesn’t just nourish the body. Food when combined with love also nourishes the soul.
We show our love to our children by preparing and plating three different meals at the one sitting because of individual likes and dislikes. We cook for unwell friends and relatives. We deliver meals to families who are grieving. We show our love by patiently baking cupcakes when our grandchildren/children are/were young, mess and all.
And when a member of your family has coeliac disease, then we go that step further primarily because we have to, but also because cooking, baking and food shopping is an extension of our commitment and love.
So here are a couple of reflections on gluten free food and the special ingredients it is MADE WITH…
MADE WITH LOVE
I loved reading Dana’s blog about her Gluten Free Rainbow Birthday Cake. A mother’s love is measured in so many different ways and her colourful rainbow cake is such a special expression of love.
MADE WITH THOUGHT
I invited a close friend Dianne to dinner recently and was truly touched by her gesture of bringing dessert. This was not a special dinner, just a catch up so there was no need to bring something. But Dianne arrived with delicious gluten free mini blueberry cheesecakes . She had gone the extra mile not only in bringing dessert but also in thinking about my son and his gluten free needs.
MADE WITH UNDERSTANDING
And then there was a teacher at my son’s school who, as an end of school gesture, arranged pizzas for her students. I started to panic as my son began to tell me about the pizza he had eaten that day. His teacher had made him a gluten free pizza. She didn’t just buy in a base and assemble the toppings, she made the dough from scratch.
It goes without saying that I will continue to bake gluten free for my son even after he leaves home and I will never arrive at his door without a plate of gluten free food. And I continue to be comforted by the fact that people in my son’s life, besides his mother and father, understand his gluten free needs and go the extra distance for him.
Food made with love and thought and understanding is definitely much sweeter.
School holidays brings with it extra time for me as a school run is a 40 minute round trip.
So gaining extra time in my day = trying out recipes from my pile of magazine cuttings.
Cheesecakes are easy to convert to gluten free as the conversion just requires a change to gluten free biscuit crumbs for the base.
I do however find cheesecakes very rich, so this is relegated to a special occasion recipe.
A Donna Hay recipe from a 2013 magazine, I even surprised myself that my cheesecakes almost looked like Donna Hay’s.
350 g plain gluten free biscuits (Donna Hay’s recipe uses plain chocolate biscuits)
1/3 cup almond meal
100 g unsalted butter, melted
Dutch cocoa, for dusting
250 g cream cheese, chopped
3/4 cup (150g) ricotta
1/2 cup caster sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
100 g dark chocolate melted
1 1/2 tablespoons red food colouring
Place the biscuits and almond meal in the bowl of a food processor and process until coarse crumbs form. Add the butter and process until combined. Line the base of 4 x 10 cm round lightly greased springform tins with baking paper. (Tins available in Coles for $3.00 and also perfect for making gluten free bread rolls) Using the back of a spoon, press the crumb mixture into the bases and sides of the tins. Refrigerate for 30 minutes – 1 hour or until cold.
Preheat oven to 140 degrees C. To make the filling, place the cream cheese, ricotta and sugar in the bowl of a food processor and process for 2 – 3 minutes or until smooth. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the eggs and vanilla and process for a further minute. Add the chocolate and food colouring and process until well combined. Divide the mixture over the bases and bake for 40 – 45 minutes or until set. Allow the cakes to stand at room temperature for 30 minutes before refrigerating for 2 – 3 hours or until cold. Dust with cocoa just before serving. Serves 4 – 6. (from Donna Hay magazine 2013)
I do think you can tell which photo is of Donna Hay’s cheesecake and which photo belongs to mine. Definitely room for improvement.
NB I preferred to serve with a dollop of cream rather than dusted cocoa. I also found it hard to keep the biscuit crust uniform in the small tins.