Tuesday, 28 June 2011

Coconut Lime Cheesecake with Mango Coulis

I've only made one cheesecake before.  It was an uncooked cheesecake and it never quite firmed up and the maple topping didn't quite work out as I've never tempered eggs before and apparently it's an art and you have to be Da Vinci in the kitchen.  Which I am not.  Basically, I was completely disappointed.

Anyway.  This is a pre-test cheesecake in advance of a special "exotic" dinner that I'm planning with a friend.  Not that kind of friend.

So here we go.

First, mix 3 tablespoons melted butter with 3/4 cup gingersnap cookies and 3/4 cup sweetened flaked coconut until moistened and press into a lightly greased 9-inch springform pan.  I didn't use gingersnap cookies because I couldn't find any, so I used graham crumbs.

I made an oopsy.  Once I had everything mixed together, I couldn't remember if I'd put in 2 tablespoons or 3 tablespoons of butter.  Agh.  So, I added an extra tablespoon of butter and just decided it would have to work.

Bake at 325 degrees for 10 minutes or until golden.  Remove from oven and cool completely.

Beat the cream cheese until smooth.

Reduce mixer speed and slowly pour 1 can of condensed milk into the cream cheese until just mixed.  Scrape bowl as necessary.

At this point there were clumps in my mixture!  CLUMPS!  I decided to keep beating and the clumps kind of came out - I think.

Add eggs one at a time, blending each into the mixture.  Scrape bowl as necessary.

After the eggs are incorporated, pour half the mixture into a new bowl.

Into this new bowl, add 1 tablespoon of lime zest and 2 tablespoons of lime juice.  I used real limes for everything.  Oh, and I added green food coloring to this part, but I should have been a little more cautious with the amount I actually used.  Always start with a little and add more if you want to.  So - this layer is like neon green.  I poured this layer on the base, because - well - it's ugly.  And it's clumpy.

A tip from me to you.  When you're juicing anything citrus, put a fine mesh strainer over a measuring cup and juice away.  You'll dirty less dishes and any pulp that comes flying out won't go into your juice.

On to the second layer.  Oh yeah.  Add 1 tablespoon coconut extract to the remaining batter and pour on top of the lime layer.

I love coconut extract.  Yum yum yum.  I need to use this more often.

Put in 300 degree oven and bake for 45 minutes, or until top springs back when gently pressed.  This actually was the result I got after 45 minutes!

When this happens, turn the oven off, crack the door open and leave until the oven is completely cooled.

Then, stick it in the refrigerator and completely chilled.

Once ready to serve, put 2 cups mango and 1 teaspoon sugar (or more if it's not sweet enough) into food processor and puree.  If it's too thick, add water until it's the consistency you want.

And the results.

Lovely and perfect.  It was creamy and the crust was the perfect texture - I might even consider just upping it to 1 cup each graham crackers and coconut.  The lime had just the right zing, and - I guess I would call it warmth - of the coconut complemented the lime perfectly.  It's a thin cheescake and not too rich. 

And the best part?  NO LUMPS!!!!  Yay!!!

I was amazed that it was so perfect looking.  I've read that cheesecakes should absolutely be baked in a bain marie (water bath) in order to prevent cracking and falling.  But it was PERFECT.  I have to be honest - I was shocked.  I expected to pull it out and find a huge crack through the middle. 

At first I just tried it without the mango coulis and then tried it again with.

To be honest, I found the mango coulis really refreshing and delicious - but I thought it really over-powered the flavour of the cheesecake.  When I serve it to others, I would just do a little whipped cream topping and a little toasted coconut on top.

But I would definitely make it again and I was SOOOOOO happy that it turned out so perfectly!

Until next time, this is the Cane Girl - signing off.

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