Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Rosewater and Lemon Cheesecake

I made a cheesecake on Friday.

Everything that could go wrong went wrong with the making.  Not so the eating.  The eating was very good.

So, what happened?

1 kg of cream cheese turns out to be much more expensive than I had anticipated - about $16 for 1 kg.  I ended up buying homebrand for about $10.

The food processor blade broke on both sides trying to blend the semi-solid cream cheese.

The cake had to be baked in a water bath and it turns out that we don't have a baking tray big enough to contain our large round cake tin.  I found that out after I had already baked the cake base in said large round cake tin.

I thought I would be very clever and substitute our giant square cake tin (from Ginger's baptism) for the baking tray.  Turns out the cake tin leaks - a lot.  So there was boiling water all through the oven and all over the floor.

I persevered though, topping up the water with freshly boiled water every ten minutes for the 90 minute cooking time.  I hadn't accounted for what would happen when I had to take the whole thing out of the oven and that steady stream of boiling water became a torrent.  It may have involved some yelling at Ginger to "get out of the kitchen.  Mummy is not cross but it is not safe in here at the moment."  and a slightly scalded leg (nothing aloe vera wasn't able to fix).

And, the couple we went to dinner with, for whom I had baked the cake.  Well, it turns out she is a coeliac and couldn't eat it anyway.

On the plus side, it did taste good.  Very good.

Lemon and Rosewater Cheesecake

From We Love Food

200g gingernut biscuits
40g unsalted butter, melted
1kg cream cheese
240g caster sugar
3 tbsp lemon juice
grated zest of 1 lemon
1 tsp of vanilla extract
2 tsp rosewater (optional)
4 eggs, at room temperature

Preheat the oven to 170 degrees C.  Grease a round 23cm spring-form.  Place the tin on a large sheet of foil and press it up the outsides of the tin to seal.  Repeat the process so it is double-wrapped.

Place the biscuits and melted butter in a food processor and pulse until finely ground.  Spoon the biscuit mix into the base of the tin and press to form an even layer.  Bake for 8-10 minutes, or until golden and fragrant.  Set aside to cool.

Blend the cream cheese in a clean food processor until smooth.  Add the sugar, lemon juice and zest, vanilla and rosewater and blend until combined.  Add the eggs, one at a time, while the processor is still going.

Pour the mixture into the prepared tin.  Place the tin in a deep baking tray on top of a cake cooling rack and pour in enough hot water to come about 2.5cm up the side of the tin.  Bake for 1-11/2 hours, or until the top of the cake is golden brown and a skewer inserted comes out clean.  Remove from the oven and take the tin out of the water removing the tinfoil immediately.  Allow the cheesecake to cool completely in the tin.  This will stop the base from going soggy.  Carefully remove the cheesecake, lightly wrap in cling-wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours before serving.


  1. Hello PH!
    I love your new header! Ginger is now a tropical girl!
    I hope you are feeling well. Your cheesecake sounds like delicate and delicious fare! YUMMY!

  2. Oh goodness, that does sound like everything went wrong!! But it tasted good and that's the main thing!! Recipe sounds great....thanks for your ricotta tips by the way!

  3. Oh no I'm so glad that it tasted good in the end and it turned out beautifully by the looks of that photo:)

  4. Looks amazing, despite all the hiccups along the way!

  5. Oh no, oh well, the boiling water helps steam clean the oven i guess?? Our main issue with any baking in an Army oven is the uneven heat, can't wait for a proper oven, it's my husband's treat when we build a home. Not sure if you do this, but we place one of those aluminium foil BBQ disposable trays at the bottom of our oven, leave it there to catch any spills (like self sauching chocolate pudding) or fat splatter, replace when necessary but it's amazing when it comes to cleaning the oven, the bottom is spotless (leave the tray in while you clean, catches all the mess). Yes, have cleaned plenty of ovens in my time. Love Posie

  6. OH no - what a shame that you went to all that trouble and she couldnt even eat it.
    Hope your leg gets better quickly.
    1kg of cream cheese - wow - that must be one dense cheese cake.

  7. Posie - I loved that idea of using a bbq tray to catch oven drips. I am going to hunt one down! Fortunately for me the last 2 times we have moved I have been pregnant and Mr Provincial has had to clean the oven - I draw the line at exposing my unborn child to caustic cleaning products.

    Thanks for your concern Kylie. My leg was fine with half an hour or so. I was very lucky:)