Here is an antidote to the grey days, the rainy days, the days when Spring is a misty, half-forgotten memory and you can’t remember the last time you went out without a coat. Yes, the cold snap is dragging on a bit, but that’s all the more reason to make yourself a sunshine-y treat, even if you’re doing it with winter ingredients. Rhubarb and oranges are both plentiful right now, and they’re an ideal match in this creamy cheesecake. The vibrant pinks and oranges will cheer up any gloomy day, and this crowd-pleasing dessert is sure to put a smile on your face.
There’s something completely addictive about this cheesecake. James and I ate half of it between the two of us on day one, and gave the rest away very reluctantly as a self-preservation measure. There’s a luxurious creaminess to it, but also the bright and refreshing lightness of fruit. A worryingly delicious combination.
It’s also very simple to make. My inherently laziness has always resulted in my plumping for set cheesecakes rather than baked cheesecakes as a general rule (except that one time I went mad). Even though both are delicious, the set variety are undeniably easier.
2 tbsp caster sugar
250g ginger biscuits (or biscuits of your choice – digestives and oat biscuits also work well)
100g butter, melted
600g full-fat cream cheese
zest of 3 oranges – use the segments for the decoration
125g icing sugar
150ml double cream
- Heat your oven to 220C/ 200C fan/ gas 5. Trim your rhubarb, and cut it into roughly 3cm chunks. Toss the rhubarb in the 2 tbsp caster sugar. Roast for 10-15 minutes, or until the rhubarb is soft but not collapsing. I then ran over it with a blowtorch for extra char, but that’s obviously totally not necessary – I realise most people don’t have a kitchen blowtorch! Leave it to cool.
- Line a 23cm springform tin. Gently melt your butter, if you haven’t already. Blitz your biscuits to rubble in a food processor, or pop them in a bag and bash them for some stress-busting fun. Mix the biscuits and the melted butter together, then press them into your tin as evenly as possible. Chill while you make the filling.
- In a large bowl or stand mixer, blend the cream cheese, orange zest, and icing sugar until smooth. Add the cream and beat until the mixture has thickened a little. Gently fold in half your roasted rhubarb, saving the rest for decoration. Spread the filling evenly over the base and chill until set, six hours or overnight.
- Finish the cheesecake with segments of the zested oranges and the remaining rhubarb.