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Sour Cherry Cheesecake

Large jars of sour cherries can often be found on supermarket shelves, especially around holiday time. When prepared with a small amount of sugar, these sour cherries present a delicious vibrant tartness that is appreciated on a sweet cheesecake.

If you prefer the convenience of a crumb crust, try this Chocolate Crumb Crust recipe on our Cheesecake page.

Cherry Cheesecake
You may use granulated sugar in the crust, or grind it for a minute in the food processor for superfine sugar. Otherwise, castor sugar or even icing sugar will give a smooth texture to the crust. If you measure a quarter of a cup of powdered sugar, you can remove a tablespoon or two to reduce the sweetness, if you prefer.

Chocolate Shortbread Crust:

1 cup all-purpose flour

¼ cup castor sugar or other fine sugar, scant

½ cup cocoa OR

2 squares unsweetened or semi-sweet chocolate, grated

1/3 cup butter, cold and cubed

Filling:

12 oz cream cheese

½ cup sugar

1 tbls cornstarch

2 large eggs

¼ cup flour

1 cup coconut milk

1 tsp vanilla

1/8 tsp coconut extract (optional)

 

Glaze:

19 oz sour cherries and juice

½ cup sugar

3 tbls cornstarch

Preheat oven to 350° F with pans of water on bottom rack and second rack in the middle.

In a medium bowl, mix flour, cocoa (or grated chocolate) and sugar for crust.  Cut in cold butter with a pastry blender to resemble coarse meal, or use a food processor.  Press into the bottom of a 10” springform pan with bottom and sides lined with parchment.

Have filling ingredients at room temperature.  Cream the cheese at low speed and blend in the sugar and cornstarch; then, add eggs one at a time and vanilla plus optional coconut extract.  Blend in the coconut milk alternately with the flour, beginning with flour.  Scrape down sides and bottom of bowl and continue to beat gently until the filling makes a smooth batter.

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Pour batter into prepared springform pan and tap or shake gently to settle.  Place in preheated oven for thirty minutes without opening the oven door; then, turn heat off and continue to bake and then cool slowly for an hour.  Open oven door slightly and allow cake to cool for another half hour, then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.

In a small saucepan, mix sugar and cornstarch, then strain juice from cherries into pan.  Cook on medium heat stirring until glaze bubbles and thickens and then until the mixture clears, about 5 minutes.  Stir in cherries and set aside to cool.

When both the cake and the glaze are only slightly warm, pour the glaze over the cake and smooth the top almost to the edges.  Place in refrigerator until chilled, then cover with plastic film stretched over the top but not touching the glaze, or place in a cake container.  Covering before thoroughly chilled may result in a runny glaze as a result of condensation.  Allow cake to set over night or for roughly 6 hours.

Unmold the cake and carefully remove the parchment.  Crust should be sturdy enough to support the weight of the cake with a large spatula or pizza peel under it. Transfer gently to a cake plate or marble lazy Susan for serving and cover any leftovers with a cake cover before replacing in the refrigerator.

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