By Monish Gujral
Cheesecake lends itself to a number of variations that extend its reach and universal appeal. As the old saying goes, one first feasts with the eyes before eating. Hence the presentation pays an important part to make the food appealing and palatable. The cheesecake can easily be the showstopper for most dinner tables owing to its elegance and beauty bestowed on it by luscious and colorful fruits, sometimes even nuts, nougats or even chocolate chips.
Although I have written about cheesecake before, this column is dedicated to my friends on diet; so I am going to share the recipe of the hung curd cheesecake.
For the filling:
Plain yoghurt 2 kg
Sugar 1-1/2 cup sugar or sugar free sweetener as per taste
Almond essence 1-1/2 teaspoons
Lemon juice – 2 tablespoons
Cornstarch 1 tablespoon
For the crust:
Digestive biscuits 10
Butter 2 tablespoons
Brown sugar powdered 1 teaspoon
Fresh mangoes sliced – 2 large
To make Greek yoghurt, lay a piece of cheesecloth or muslin in a bowl.
Add yoghurt and let it drain by keeping it in a large sieve. Drain the yoghurt for about 1 1/2 hours.
For the crust: Crush the digestive biscuits and add melted butter and brown sugar.
Put the mixture in a nine-inch Springform pan and blend it well with your fingers. Press it on all sides of the pan to form the crust base. Now keep it in a preheated oven (180° C) for 10 minutes.
Once it is brown, take it out from the oven and keep it in the fridge to cool.
To make the filling, combine the strained yoghurt, eggs, sugar, almond essence and blend with a beater or food processor. Add cornstarch, lemon juice and a pinch of salt before blending the mixture again.
Now pour the mixture into the prepared crust and bake at 180° C for 35-40 minutes. Check the cake for firmness. It is done when it’s firm on the edges and still a bit shaky in the centre.
Take the cake out of the oven and let it cool in the fridge for at least five hours, preferably overnight. Once it’s completely cooled, release the Springform and take the cake out in a serving dish.
Decorate it with sliced fresh mangoes before serving.
Ain’t the best things in life sweet?
Monish Gujral, owner of the Moti Mahal chain, is a restaurateur, chef and food writer. He can be contacted at email@example.com