Wednesday 28 August 2019

Burnt Basque cheesecake

If I'm honest, I am not that into cheesecake. But my dad, who visited recently, is. I'd had this recipe bookmarked for a while and was biding my time til he next came to try it out. The thing about cheesecake for me, apart from it being so rich, how fiddly it is to make. Biscuit bases, water baths, chilling time... But this recipe had none of those things. All you had to do was mix together a few ingredients, pour it into a tin, bake til burnt (bonus: no anxiety about that then), let cool to room temperature, and eat. Amazing! 

The only slightly tricksy thing about the process is the lining of the tin - because of the eggs, the cake rises a lot (before sinking back down) so you have to use a few pieces of overlapping baking paper to ensure it's contained. Easy really but should you be at all anxious about this, just watch this video of the recipe's creator, Bon App├ętit's Molly Baz, making it. If the quantities of cream cheese are horrifying to you (4 bricks!), do as I did and halve the recipe and bake it in a smaller tin. Make no mistake, this is rich, whichever size tin you use, but that's what cheesecake is all about after all. Embrace it.

Tuesday 13 August 2019

Tangelo polenta drizzle cake

Nature is clever. In the middle of winter, when everything is feeling grey and dreary, it offers up citrus. It's enough to just gaze upon the bright colours of lemons and oranges and limes and pink grapefruit and everything in between but the flavour of these fruits works the same way to shock you out of a slump.

This recipe requires a single bowl. If you don't have tangelos, oranges or lemons will do. Containing both oil and yoghurt, the cake keeps well which means you can make it ahead, or have it on hand for the week. But the colour! It's the best. Sweet and softly glowing, it's almost like eating sun.

Wednesday 7 August 2019

Louisa's cake

I made a cake. It's been a while. After meeting all my deadlines, the sun was out Saturday and so I baked. This recipe I'd had bookmarked for a while. It had a short list of ingredients, always a winner in my book, and came with authentic Italian credentials (likewise). It contained ricotta, of which I have a seemingly endless supply in my freezer (compulsively making it when milk is about to expire) and there's nothing I like more than being able to cook with pantry staples. So. I've made many a ricotta cake before - this one is a perennial favourite - but this distinguished itself from the others by by featuring apple among its ingredients. You can't so much taste the fruit itself, just its subtle sweetness. Leavened with a little flour, rich with ricotta and bolstered with butter, it's simple and decadent all at once. I don't know Louisa but her cake is excellent. Grazie.