Baked Loganberry and White Chocolate Cheesecake
Sublime, delicious, tasty, extraordinary… these are words that customers use to describe my cheesecakes. I have a cheesecake for all seasons and this one is my peak summer favourite. I wish I had kept track of how many cheesecakes I have made and sold since I started making them. Let’s put it this way – I have used an awful lot of cream cheese indeed!
My mother loves cheesecake and she usually makes the chilled set type of cheesecake as it’s easy and she does not really like to use the oven – too expensive she says. My saying always used to be, “Mother, if you are going to eat cheesecake it has to be worthwhile, and in my opinion it has to be a baked cheesecake.” She likes to remind me of my words every so often, and I must say after all these years that my opinion still has not changed and I still agree with myself!
I make a baked crumble for the base, but if you really do not have time then use crushed digestive biscuits instead. I quadruple the crumble recipe and then use the leftovers for a delicious gooseberry crumble. Alternatively, the leftover crumble mix will keep in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 month (or it can be frozen), and it can then be used to make more delicious cheesecakes.
Loganberries are a hybrid of a raspberry and a blackberry. The large berries are deep purple red in colour and their sharp taste is similar to that of a raspberry. Their season coincides with the raspberry season and usually finishes before the blackberry season begins. We buy our loganberries from High House Farm, not far from us in Suffolk.
You could alternatively use blackberries, blueberries, raspberries, strawberries or rhubarb for this cheesecake.
For the crumble base
- 75g rolled oats
- 75g plain flour
- 50g soft dark brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon runny (clear) honey
- 50g unsalted butter, chilled
- 25g unsalted butter, melted
For the cheesecake filling
- 500g fresh loganberries
- 800g cream cheese (or full-fat soft cheese, such as Philadelphia)
- 75ml double cream
- 200g caster sugar
- 1 vanilla pod, split in half lengthways and seeds scraped out
- 2 whole eggs
- 2 egg yolks
- 120g white chocolate, melted
- 200ml chilled stock syrup (see Cook’s Note)
- white chocolate curls, for decorating
First prepare the crumble base. Preheat the oven to 200°C/180°C fan/Gas Mark 6. Line a baking tray with non-stick baking paper. Grease and line a 28 x 18cm loose-bottomed oblong cake frame or tin with non-stick baking paper and set aside.
Mix the oats, flour, sugar and honey together in a mixing bowl, then rub in the chilled butter until the mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs. Transfer the mixture to the prepared baking tray and spread it out evenly, then bake in the oven for 12–15 minutes or until golden brown, stirring once.
Remove from the oven and let the crumble mixture cool for 30 minutes. Transfer the crumble mixture to a blender or food processor and pulse blend twice, then add the melted butter and pulse blend twice again. Spread the crumble mixture evenly over the base of the prepared cake frame or tin and press firmly to create the cheesecake base. Scatter 250g of the loganberries (for the filling) over the cheesecake base and refrigerate while you prepare the filling.
If you have turned the oven off, preheat it again to 200°C/180°C fan/Gas Mark 6. For the cheesecake filling, put the cream cheese, cream, sugar, vanilla seeds, eggs, egg yolks and melted white chocolate in a clean blender or food processor and blend until smooth and mixed – do not blend for more than a minute, otherwise the mixture might split if it overheats. Pour the mixture over the loganberries in the cake frame or tin, then tap the frame a couple of times to remove any trapped air bubbles.
Bake the cheesecake in the oven for 22–25 minutes. Once cooked, the top will have coloured golden brown slightly and will have risen (souffléd) slightly, but it will sink back down once set. The cheesecake will also still have a slight wobble in the centre when it’s ready (once chilled, this will have set perfectly). Remove from the oven and leave the cheesecake to cool at room temperature for 30 minutes, then chill in the fridge for a minimum of 3 hours before cutting. The chilled baked cheesecake will keep in the fridge for up to 3 days.
While the cheesecake is chilling, mix the remaining loganberries with the chilled stock syrup. If you are slightly heavy-handed then that’s good, as a few crushed berries will release their juices and create a good colour for decorating.
To serve, cut the chilled cheesecake into 10 even slices. Decorate with the loganberries in syrup and white chocolate curls, and serve immediately.
To make a basic stock syrup (sugar syrup), place equal quantities of water and caster sugar in a pan (so for 200ml stock syrup you will need to use 110ml water and 110g caster sugar – this allows for about 5% evaporation) and heat gently, stirring until the sugar has dissolved. Add the juice of 1 lemon. Bring gently to the boil, then simmer gently for 1–2 minutes. Remove from the heat, then cool and chill before use. The stock syrup will keep in an airtight container in the fridge for 2–3 weeks.