I remember the first time I had mascarpone, Mama Jeanette had made a cheesecake for dessert, it was a blend of ricotta and mascarpone, a different type of cheesecake than I had been use to and my introduction to that wonderful cheese. I kept calling it mars-capone, and Mama Jeanette would laugh and say “Sonny boy, just because the moon is made of green cheese don’t think that Mars is made of mascarpone ” , she would laugh and tell me what a silly boy I was. So many things remind me of the days I spent under Mama Jeanette’s tutelage and so many foods take me back to those times. Food can trigger so many memories, just like a song, it can magically transport you to another place and time.
I’ve found many uses for that creamy version of Italian cream cheese that Mama Jeanette shared with me, but cheesecake has got to be my favorite way to showcase that glorious cheese.
My wife loves cheesecake, but after two pieces she’ll leave the rest for me…..sigh, thank goodness for neighbors! I do enjoy a good cheesecake and although I do like ricotta cheesecakes, my favorite will always be New York style. Of course I did take some liberties with the ingredients in my version using half mascarpone instead of all cream cheese.
I like a simple cheesecake, without too many additions, but I’ve been known to get a little adventurous with my ingredients depending upon what I have on hand. Thankfully I still have a good supply of Meyer Lemons, and you know what my philosophy on Meyer Lemons is, “When life give you Meyer Lemons…..You gotta Bake”
I kept thinking about a sour cream topping for my cheesecake and even had some Lemon Greek Yogurt that would have worked nicely in the topping, but I decided a layer of white chocolate would add just the right touch to my Meyer Lemon Cheesecake. My crust included salted toasted pistachios so when I served my cheesecake, along with the fresh blueberries I added a few of pistachios. What a nice combination of flavors!
If you like lemon, this version of my cheesecake should be on your must make list, and when you do make it I hope you enjoy it as much as Lisa and I did.
- 11/2 cup digestive biscuits orgraam cracker crumbs
- ½ cup ground pistachios
- 6 tablespoons butter, melted
- 16 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 16 ounces mascarpone cheese
- 1 cup sugar
- ⅓ cup Meyer lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon Meyer lemon zest
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 5 large eggs
- 4 ounces white chocolate- melted
- Place the digestive biscuits in a food processor and pulse to a fine crumb, place in mixing bowl
- Add pistachios to the food processor and pulse to finely ground, add to mixing bowl
- Add melted butter and mix well.
- Press crumb mixture into the bottom and sides of a 10 inch springform pan.
- Bake crust for 10-12 minutes at 325 degrees
- Cool on a wire rack.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the cheeses, sugar, lemon juice, zest and vanilla until smooth.
- Add eggs one at a time, beat on low speed just until combined.
- Pour over crust.
- Wrap filled springform pan with foil around bottom and part way up the sides, then place the pan into a roasting pan big enough to hold it adding water until it comes up halfway on the springform pan.
- Bake at 325° for 60-70 minutes or until center is just set and top begins to brown.
- Remove springform pan from the oven, and cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes.
- Carefully run a knife around the edge of pan to loosen; cool 1 hour longer then refrigerate at least 6 hours or overnight.
- Place a stainless steel bowl over a pot of simmering water and melt white chocolate, making sure not to allow any water to get into the chocolate. Make sure heat does not get too high or it will burn the chocolate.
- Allow chocolate to cool for about 10 minutes then spread evenly over the top of the cheesecake.
- Place back into refrigeration until chocolate sets up, about 30 minutes.
- Slice Cheesecake with a warm knife and serve with blueberries or fruit of your choice
Spring is finally here and there’s something about lemon that says sunshine to me. I hope it adds a little sunshine to your life today.
See you soon!