Saturday, 3 September 2011

Plum & ginger swirl cheesecake

Today I will take a break from my holiday Italian theme and show you something that I am extremely proud of.  A cheesecake that I have made for Julie's birthday.

First of all I am proud of this cheesecake because I am not the best baker and not all of my desserts, especially cakes turn out as nice and tasty. Secondly I did not use any particular recipe and I based this cheesecake upon recipes that I already tried and this time added an extra twist - the plum sauce. I have seen many recipes for swirl cheesecakes using raspberry preserve, but this time of the year I was really keen to use plums instead. So I made my own plum sauce, spiced by adding little bit of ginger. So here it is - my late summer, delicious, creamy, little bit sharp yet sweet enough (drums!): plum & ginger swirl cheesecake!

Serves 8-10, makes round 25cm springform tin

For the base:

200g dark chocolate Digestive biscuits
80g unsalted butter

For the cheese filing:

600g cream cheese (800g if you prefer higher cake)
170g caster sugar
4 eggs
2 tbps custard powder
2 tbsp lemon juice
200ml creme fraiche

For the plum & ginger sauce*:

4 large plums
100ml of mead (honey wine)
2 tbsp of brown soft dark sugar
4 cubes of crystallised ginger

First prepare the sauce.Quarter and stone plums and place in a small pan with mead, sugar and ginger, then bring to the boil and simmer until the plums are very soft and juices reduced. Next blend with a hand blender until smooth and place on the small heat to reduce little bit more. Set aside. 

Line a springform tin with some kitchen foil, making sure the bottom is protected from water. I bake this cheesecake in bain-marie, which is a type of preparation used for protecting dishes requiring gentle heat from the fierce heat of the oven.

Crush the biscuits in a food processor (or put in a plastic bag and bash with a rolling pin). Mix with the melted butter. Press into springform tin and set aside. 

Preheat the oven to 180C and put a kettle on. 

Beat the cream cheese with the sugar until light and fluffy. Next add eggs – one egg at the time, mix and add next egg when previous is mixed well with the cheese mixture.

Next add lemon juice, custard powder and mix, but make sure you do not overwork it – stop when custard is mixed into the cheese. Add the creme fraiche, mix and pour the mixture into the tin.

Now using a teaspoon dot the top of the cake with the plum sauce and working with a toothpick make movements in eight shape to create swirls, like lady in this film, however I do not recommend using a knife, toothpick makes much nicer effect. 

Place the tin into an ovenproof dish and fill with hot water (about half of the size of the tin), cover with kitchen foil and bake for about 1 hour 20 minutes.  The middle will be a bit wobbly.

Take it out of the oven and let it to cool down in  and then transfer to the fridge and leave it overnight.

To cut this cheesecake use knife previously kept in the hot water - it will make the whole process easier.

* it makes a whole about 250ml jar, and really you need few teaspoons only. This was an experimental recipe, and I did not expect that much of the sauce. However I placed the remaining hot sauce in the sterylised jar, sealed and kept it for winter - it will be lovely with the pancakes.


  1. Mmmm! Karolina, this looks fantastic!

  2. I shall be making this - I have loads of lovely damsons in the garden - just right!

  3. Mario, thank you! :)

    BeadBag, I have made a sauce from damsons recently, and it was that sharp that I could not serve it to my guests. :( It was very unpleasant... So please be carefull, unles you know they not too sour. :)

    Thanks for visiting my blog, warm regards! :)


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