November 9, 2009
Three months since posting! The time has flown, which I guess it has a habit of doing when you move to another city and start graduate school. At first I had no time to cook; now I have time to cook but no time to post; soon, I hope, everything's going to settle down and I'll have time for everything (also, I should point out, there's a lot more to do - and eat - in Austin than there was in small town New Hampshire).
So, to apologise for my absence, I'm giving you this delicious object: Tamasin Day-Lewis's raspberry and vanilla cheesecake tart. It isn't a cheescake, except that it is; it's a cheesetart, which is a grown-up kind of cheesecake: crumbless, slender, elegant, and very, very good to eat.
Raspberry & Vanilla Cheesecake Tart
adapted from Tamasin's Kitchen Classics, by Tamasin Day-Lewis
For the shortcrust pastry:
170g / 6oz plain white flour
pinch of sea salt
85g / 3oz unsalted butter, cold, chopped into small pieces
1-2 tbsp ice cold water
2 tbsp sugar
For the filling:
140g / 5oz cream cheese, room temperature
150ml / 5 fl oz double (heavy) cream
1 heaped tbsp unflavoured Greek yoghurt
3 small eggs and 2 egg yolks
1/2 vanilla pod, the seeds scooped out from the split pods with a teaspoon
340g / 12 oz raspberries
Sift the flour into a large bowl with the salt and sugar, add the chopped butter, and work as briskly as you can to rub the fat into the flour. Use the tips of your fingers only, or a pastry cutter. Add the water bit by bit until the mixture coheres into a ball - you may not need to use all the water, and remember that the more you use, the more the pastry will shrink when you bake it blind. Form the pastry into a disc, wrap it in plastic, and chill it in the fridge for about 30 minutes.
Flour your work surface, your hands and a rolling pin. Roll the pastry out to fit a 20cm / 8in tart tin. Grease the tart tin, then lift the pastry with the rolling pin and place it in the tin. Don't stretch it, or it will shrink back. Chill for at least 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 200°C / 400°F / gas 6. Tear off a piece of greaseproof paper a little larger than the tart tin and place it over the pastry. Cover the paper with a layer of dried beans or baking weights. Place in the oven for 15 minutes, then remove the paper and beans and prick the base of the pastry. Return the tart to the oven for 5-10 minutes to dry the pastry base.
Meanwhile, assemble and make the filling. Turn the oven down to 180°C / 350°F / gas 4. Scrape the cream cheese into a bowl and add the cream, yoghurt, eggs and yolks, and vanilla to the bowl. Whisk all together until smooth. Scatter the raspberries over the base of the pastry shell in a single layer, then scrape over the cheesecake mix. Bake for about 45 minutes until golden and set. Cool on a rack.