Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Baked Strawberry Cheesecake (Gluten free)

Two words that make me very happy - cheese and cake... They make you happy too, don't they? Huh? Huh?

(Due to my intolerances, I haven't been able to enjoy these two "words" much. BUT, a few weeks ago I had my allergies retested and the levels of my intolerances were much lower, some have even been eradicated, except for gluten.) 

Time for cheese and cake, I'd say!

Keeping with the theme of gluten free cheesecakes, I wanted to make something extra special.

The special ingredient I decided to use in the base of my cheesecake was Nomu's Sweet Rub. (Excellent idea, if I could find it!) I just knew that the sweet, vanillary, spicy combination would complete my cheesecake and compliment the strawberry compote.

Pic taken from website

Cue "The Great Sweet Rub Run."


The scene opens to the baking isle of Pick 'n Pay in Constantia Village with a somewhat overeager Leaine casually looking for the sweet rub - but alas, no sweet rub to be found here.

Pan across to Woolworths. 

Leaine begins to panic slightly as she asks if they stock the Nomu sweet rub, only to be told that they do not.

Leaine gets into her car and thinks of the next stop - being new to Cape Town only increases the challenge.

Fade to black.


The scene opens to the baking isle of Checkers, with a nervous Leaine, trying desperately to act casually and failing, as she runs up and down; a bead of sweat lingering on her forehead. You guessed it - no sweet rub here either.

Close up of Leaine's face as the thoughts start racing through her head.

Fade to black.


Close up of Leaine's hands and phone.

Finally, Leaine has a brain-wave and sends off a frantic tweet to @NoMUChirps "Paul, this is an emergency. Where can I buy your sweet rub?" Instant reply from @NoMUChirps "If it is urgent, Cape Quarter Spar or Giovanni's." 

Close up of Leaine doing a happy dance.

Fade to black.


Awesome!! Leaine decides to phone the Spar just in case - lucky she did, as she was told that they do not have it in stock. As she dials Giovanni's, her heart is beating in her throat and she is silently sending out a message to the ether to please have it in stock. 

We have a winner - Giovanni's is a life saver - the precious sweet rub is in stock.

The relief is painted all over Leaine's face.

Fade to black.


A quick trek from Tokai to Seapoint and back (the things we do for the love of food) and Leaine is now ready to begin her cheesecake.

The cheesecake works out amazingly well.

Everyone claps and cheers.


Baked Strawberry Cheesecake


125mls (1/2 cup) melted butter
200g ground almonds (for added texture use 100g ground and 100g crushed)
2tbs Nomu Sweet Rub

4 large eggs
1 cup fructose/ sugar
75mls (5tbs) lemon juice
Zest of 1 lemon (optional)
3 x 250g tubs of smooth cottage cheese
250mls (1 cup) cream
125mls (1/2 cup) Glutagon cake flour
1tsp Nomu vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 180 °C 
Grease a round 23 cm loose-bottom cake tin with a little of the melted butter
Mix the remaining butter with the ground almonds and press the mixture onto the bottom of the cake tin 
Whisk together the eggs and sugar for about 10 minutes or until pale yellow 
Add the lemon juice while beating 
Stir in the cottage cheese, cream, lemon zest and flour and mix well 
Pour the mixture into the prepared tin and bake for 10 minutes 
Reduce the temperature to 140 °C and bake for 1 hour or until the filling has set 
Switch off the oven and leave the cheesecake to cool in the oven

Strawberry Compote:

250g strawberries, chopped
2tbs Verlaque Honey Infused Balsamic Reduction (Wild Flower Honey and Rooibos)
2tbs fructose/ sugar
1/4tsp Nomu vanilla extract

Add all ingredients to a pan and cook until the strawberries have softened and become jam-like
Allow to cool and spread over the cheesecake

    Tuesday, July 5, 2011

    Lemon and Honey Fridge Cheesecake (Gluten Free)

    Yesterday, I was asked if I had a recipe for a gluten and sugar free cheesecake by a lady who was craving cheesecake, but needed to be good. There is a recipe for a mock lemon cheesecake on my blog already, but I decided to rise to this challenge and enlisted the help of personal chef, Neill Anthony.

    Together, we came up with this little masterpiece and it tasted pretty damn awesome, if I do say so myself!! :)

    Lemon and Honey Fridge Cheesecake (Gluten Free):


    125mls (1/2 cup) melted butter
    200g ground almonds

    2 x 250g tubs smooth cream cheese
    200mls honey
    Zest of 1 lemon
    Juice of half a lemon
    250mls cream
    5 leaves of gelatine soaked in cold water
    50g fructose


    Toast ground almonds in a dry pan on the stove until golden
    Add the melted butter to the ground almonds and press the mixture onto the bottom of a loose-bottom cake tin
    Place the tin in the fridge to allow the base to set while you prepare the filling
    Combine cream cheese, 100mls honey, lemon juice and lemon zest
    Whisk 200mls cream to soft peak state and fold into the cream cheese mixture
    Heat the remaining honey and fructose on the stove for about 10 minutes until it becomes almost caramel-like
    Cool down the honey a bit with the remaining cream and briskly mix in the squeezed out gelatine
    Mix some of the cream cheese mixture into the gelatine mixture and slowly transfer this new mixture into the original cream cheese mixture, folding all the time to prevent lumps
    Pour the mixture into the cake tin and allow to set for a minimum of 4 hours in the fridge
    Serve with a drizzle of honey and a grating of lemon zest