Cheesecake with the real Philly cream cheese

The creamy cheese and the tart berries are a combination worth cheating your diet for!

Strawberry cheesecake with a strawberry-balsamic glaze

There’s something about a cheesecake. I don’t know whether it’s the name – I mean, how can you say no to a dish that has ‘cheese’ and ‘cake’ in it? And now that the fiancé is crazy about cheesecakes, I know that this is one dessert that I’m going to make very often.
I’ve had quite a number of disasters with the baked cheesecake – its either too runny, doesn’t set well, too eggy or way too custard-y – so I’ve put that on the backburner for now. But the day I make the classic, New York style cheesecake to perfection, I’ll do a fox trot. Yes, I will.
Okay, now before I ramble on let’s just get back to business. A colleague of mine wanted me to make a strawberry cheesecake, it was for some potluck, it had to have fresh strawberries, Philly cream cheese and also, could I please do a strawberry jelly/glaze to top it off? Sure, I grinned. This was just the chance I was looking for and there was no way I was going to let it slip. Now those of you who know me are aware of the egg allergy and by now you must’ve figured out that I don’t like using too much of butter or cream in my cooking, call it a health kick or just being frugal; but I just attribute it to the fact that – 1. I don’t like milk or too many milk products, other than curd and 2. If the raw materials for the dish are expensive, I just won’t make it. That’s not my style, no burning-hole-in-the-pocket recipes for me! Anyway, so off I went to get all the ingredients for this uber-delish cheesecake.
Since the cheesecake itself is a little rich I wanted to contrast it with a slightly tart glaze, so I added a little bit of balsamic to offset the strawberries and this worked like magic. Yes, this recipe is a little elaborate but it works really well because other than the glaze/jelly there’s no actual cooking involved. And the best part is that you can make it ahead and save on a lot of time.
For the strawberry balsamic topping
2 cups of fresh strawberries, chopped
3-4 tbsp of powdered sugar
¾ tsp of balsamic vinegar
1 tsp of gelatine dissolved in ¼ cup of water
½  cup of water
Puree the strawberries and the sugar together, when it has blended well add the balsamic to this and stir it in. Pour this into a saucepan, add ½ cup of water and allow it to gently bubble until it starts to thicken. Turn off the flame and let the temperature reduce until it is just a little above room temperature. Now add the gelatine to this and mix well. Allow the mixture to completely cool down and let it set overnight in the fridge. 
If you have any leftovers from this glaze, you can use it as an ice cream topping too
For the base of the cheesecake
100gms of digestive biscuits
1 tbsp of melted butter
Powder the digestive biscuits in a mixie until it resembles the texture of coarse sand. Spread the biscuit crumbs evenly across the surface of a clear glass dish. Drizzle the melted butter over this and press it with your fingertips so that it sets well. Keep this in the fridge for at least an hour before adding the filling to this.
A few ingredients for a lot of taste
For the cheesecake filling
400gms of unsalted Philly cream cheese (I actually prefer the Britannia cream cheese and no, I’m not being frugal here. We’ll come to that later)
100 ml for fresh cream
¾ to 1 cup of powdered sugar
150 gms of strawberries, hulled, chopped and pureed
2 ¼ tsp of gelatine dissolved in ¾ cup of water
Cream the sugar, cream cheese and fresh cream together until combined well. Now add the strawberry puree to this and mix. Check the level of sugar and add more if necessary. Add the gelatine to this and miz well again. Now pour this cheese mixture on top of the biscuit base. Allow this to set for at least 6 hours or better still, let it remain overnight in the fridge. 
Cream the cheese, sugar and fresh cream well. This gives the cheesecake a good texture
To finish the cheesecake
  • Once the cheesecake has set, remove it from the fridge. Take the balsamic-strawberry glaze and spread a thin layer of this on the cheesecake.
  • Allow this to set for about 2-3 hours until done.
  • Garnish with chocolate curls or fresh strawberry slices and serve.
Its a badly taken picture, I’ll admit, but I wanted to show off the layers!
  • Vegetarians can replace the gelatine with agar-agar or China grass.
  • If strawberries are not in season, you can replace with any other fruit.
  • In case you are pressed for time, skip the glaze instead make a topping by warming some jam and a spoonful of water to create a thick sauce and use this to top the cheesecake. 

Note: The measurements are in grams because this was an order I was catering to , else I’m more comfortable with the tsp, tbsp and cup measurements.  

This is also going to Showcase desserts at Divya’s culinary journey

I’m sending this off to  Fab Friday at My Crowded Kitchen

No Comments

  • Square Meals April 21, 2012 at 1:55 am

    Nice..the cheesecake looks yummy 🙂


  • Tiffany/MyCrowdedKitchen April 21, 2012 at 9:08 am

    Thanks so much for linking your yumminess up on Fab Friday! So happy you came. I hope you can continue to come back and share with us each week. Have a great weekend!

  • Renuka April 22, 2012 at 2:56 am

    Try it Aparna! I bet u will like it..

  • Renuka April 22, 2012 at 2:57 am

    Tiffany, you've got a great idea there.. will definitely visit ur space every week for the event!

  • Divya Pramil April 23, 2012 at 3:13 am

    Nice recipe and I appreciate your effort trying to show the layers.. Keep up the good work!!

    Do visit mine if you have time to spare

  • Renuka April 24, 2012 at 4:27 pm

    Hi Divya, u have a lovely space.. liked some of ur recipes!

  • Satish November 7, 2012 at 5:37 am

    hi.. just wanted to check why is that you like Britannia cream cheese? and not philly.. awesome cheese cake.. looks yummy !

    I handle the cheese brand for britannia and was inquisitive…

    .. most importantly.. its good to be frugal sometimes..


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